Storytelling as a Capacity: Better Content Equals Better Outcomes

Capacity building — the process of developing an organization’s strength and resiliency. When you invest in capacity building it is not just about today, it is an investment in the effectiveness and future sustainability of a nonprofit. (Council of Nonprofits)

Put more simply, the practice of capacity building is essentially the embodiment of the timeless parable; “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.”

A focus area for nonprofit Capacity building that is starting to become more prevalent is the concept of “Storytelling as a Capacity”.

The Georgetown University Center for Social Impact Communications recently published A Guide to Strategic and Sustainable Nonprofit Storytelling” where they conducted story audits of more than 150 nonprofits’ current online storytelling capabilities, and interviewed more than a dozen organizations.

Here are the key takeaways:

  • 90% strongly agree that they expect the importance of nonprofit storytelling will increase
  • 61% of respondents acknowledge that the number one area in which your storytelling could be improved is through “Collecting Content”
  • When asked “What is the number one barrier to effectively telling stories?”,  the number one response was “Staff Resources”

There is A LOT to unpack from this study and if you are interested in learning more we highly recommend that you check it out, but the high level takeaway is that when it comes to demonstrating your impact, highlighting your DE&I efforts, and building trust with your community; better content always equals better outcomes.

Where do you start?

At MemoryFox, we are on a mission to sharpen these storytelling capacities for nonprofits of every shape and size. We are proudly partnering with grantmaking organizations throughout the country to deliver on our Capacity Building Program.


The Challenge: Limited Access to Funding

Storytelling is essential to social good organizations of every size, but limited access to funding creates a barrier for the smaller organizations who would benefit the most from a more streamlined storytelling process.

The Solution: Bridge the Funding Gap

Granting organizations all over the country are leading the way to help nonprofits in their community build critical organizational capacities. We partner with grantmakers to provide equitable access to our storytelling tools, so that nonprofits of every size can more effectively collect, organize, and share community-generated content. As part of the program, participating grantees receive an annual subscription to MemoryFox and a tailored storytelling workshop with one of our training partners or a facilitator of their choice.

Getting Started: Join the Program

Nonprofits who are interested in being connected with a funder can start that process right here.

Granting organizations who are interested in offering this program to your community can learn more right here.