In 2010, it was laid on my heart to start a nonprofit organization for young women named Love Outreach to Value and Empower Our Young Women (L.O.V.E Our Young Women). I started out by focusing on building the perfect business plan.
Then two years went by and very little in the plan was completed…leading me to feel defeated. During this time I was completing my Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Management so I had the tools and resources I needed to start the organization. But again, I was focused on getting everything on paper and creating the perfect business plan before launching any programs.
One day, I asked someone who I had been watching for a while, because of how passionate she was about changing the lives of youth through her own nonprofit, if I could just speak with her. I went by her office and shared with her my heart and the words she said would propel the launch of L.O.V.E Our Young Women. She said to me, “Just get started, let your youth create your mission and ‘business plan’ for you.”
The next Sunday I went to my church and hung up the poster below. The rest is history…
At my first meeting I had one mentee in attendance and from there it evolved into a platform for other mentors to donate their time and resources to help uplift the youth. For the mentee, it became a catalyst to recruit other friends and family to join and benefit from the valuable experiences offered by these mentors. At each meeting, I watched the membership grow and what started as L.O.V.E Our Young Women transformed into L.O.V.E Our Youth as our mission continued to expand.
As these meetings progressed, the following needs became apparent:
Our youth are in need of caring adults from various walks of life.
Many adults have the heart to give but may not have the time to plan experiences with our youth.
Our nonprofit and/or community organizations do not need another organization to compete with, but a partner to collaborate with.
This led to the launch of the three program focus areas:
- L.O.V.E Our Youth
- L.O.V.E Our Community
- L.O.V.E Others
I share all this to say, just get started! Everyone’s starting point may look a little different but the most important part is that you start. Think about what has been delaying you from growing your nonprofit, develop your action, and just get started!
Need help moving your organization to the next level don’t wait, schedule a strategy session today here: https://calendly.com/lasheenawilliams/getting-started