Who We Work With
We work with nonprofits and the organizations in Southeast Michigan that support them. Our services and programs are designed with nonprofit leaders to fill existing service gaps and complement what already exists. Through our networks and the activation of our space, we foster a resilient, connected nonprofit community.
If you are a LEADER looking for thought-partners to solve a problem or generate an idea, Co.act is your space.
If you are a RESEARCHER, EVALUATOR or DATA GURU and have learned something that has application across the nonprofit sector, come share! Co.act is your space.
If you are an ORGANIZATION looking to scale, interested in telling your story more effectively or hoping to beef up your fundraising prowess, Co.act is your space.
If you are a NETWORK of organizations or a group of CROSS-SECTOR PARTNERS WORKING COLLABORATIVELY to tackle an issue or align efforts, Co.act is your space.
“Co.act is a place nonprofits can come together, work together and learn together. Nonprofits will be able to receive the services that meet them where they are.”
—Allandra Bulger, Executive Director, Co.act Detroit
Our Capacity Areas
In early 2019, our partners at Michigan Nonprofit Association, Michigan Community Resources, Nonprofit Enterprise at Work, and the School of Social Work at University of Michigan reimagined the essential concept of nonprofit capacity building. Our partners studied our region’s sector, collaborated with nonprofit and community leaders, and reported their findings and recommendations in the 2019 Building a Network report.
What emerged is a new definition for capacity building in nonprofits — one that emphasizes the importance of strengthening connectivity between the many distinct actors within the nonprofit sector. Core to this redefinition is also a clear recognition of the racial, social and economic barriers nonprofits face in achieving their missions. We believe building the capacity of nonprofits to meet their mission means investing in the following seven capacity areas:
Build the capacity of nonprofits to recruit, retain, and invest in the knowledge, skills, and leadership of diverse, capable, empathetic staff at all levels.
Build the capacity of nonprofits to manage operational functions such as budgeting and accounting, data and technology, organizational policies and procedures, communications, and human resources.
Funding & Resources
Build the capacity of nonprofits to secure 1. Income through fundraising, philanthropic giving, and earned income streams 2. Nonmonetary resources (pro bono services, volunteers, in kind donations).
Build the capacity of nonprofits to critically examine and challenge the attitudes, practices, and values which shape how they operate internally, and how they engage with their constituents and actors within the nonprofit ecosystem.
Strategy & Planning
Build the capacity of nonprofits to develop plans to achieve their organizational goals and to put those plans into action.
Program Development, Management, & Evaluation
Build the capacity of nonprofits to develop and manage programs and services which are responsive to community needs and voice, and to evaluate the effectiveness of those programs and services.
Leadership & Governance
Build the capacity of nonprofits to develop diverse, empathetic boards and executive leadership that demonstrate vision and competence Some tactics to put this strategy into action across all 7 capacity areas: Funding, Assessments, Targeted Convenings, Coaching and Consulting, Mentorship, Fiscal Sponsorship, and Low Cost or No Cost Professional Services.
Since our launch experience in Summer 2019, much has changed in our world. Co.act opened its doors to in-person programming and collaboration in June 2019. In March 2020, we paused and shut our building, out of caution and safety because of COVID-19. As we step into a new year and a new phase of work, we’re looking back on the impact we’ve had in the nonprofit ecosystem we’re proud to call home.