Organizers for Multicultural Community Use CiviCRM to Track Supporters and as a Tool for Neighbor-led Projects
IMPACT Silver Spring
IMPACT Silver Spring is a network committed to fostering a cohesive multicultural community in Silver Spring, Maryland, on the northern border of Washington, DC. They enlisted AGH Strategies to install and customize CiviCRM to not only track supporters and donors, but also to serve as a tool for neighbor-led projects and teams. IMPACT's community organizers can now track the many varied ways that neighbors interact with each other and the organization.
In addition to the standard CiviCRM online contributions, profile forms, and contact and activity tracking, a key element of this project was tracking activities back to a project, which can have many contacts as project members. In addition, staff wanted to use CiviGrant to track grant applications.
The client had been using a combination of an Access database and a raft of spreadsheets to track interactions with constituents. The primary interest was setting up a system that could be accessible by the entire staff--both in terms of literally being able to interact with it and for being a tool they could understand.
Among IMPACT's many projects are knocking on doors of thousands of Montgomery County residents each year. These interactions had been tracked through the old database, and they needed to be imported into CiviCRM. Moreover, one or more people live at each house, and each visit involved the door-knocking volunteers and one or more residents answering the door. Therefore, the import and ongoing tracking of these involves creating not only an activity record but also household and individual records, plus relationships all around.
For IMPACT, their Development Director, Lianna Levine Reisner, led the effort, joined by Alix Nunan, their Engagement Coordinator who started work at IMPACT soon after the project began. Planning, installation, customization, and training was led by Andrew Hunt, Principal at AGH Strategies. A technology evaluation in advance of the project was led by IMPACT's Operations Director Linda Kahn and Lisa Rau from Confluence Corporation.
Why did this project use CiviCRM?
Salesforce was also evaluated--the client looked at the two options because of their flexibility. Ultimately, CiviCRM's nonprofit focus, open-source background, and ability to handle dozens of users without additional fees made the difference.