There are conferences and conventions available for nearly any interest or profession, and grantmaking is no exception. Across the United States, there exist a number of events designed especially for grantmakers and others working for nonprofit organizations.
These events allow grantmakers to network, learn about new technologies and best practices, and offer other opportunities for professional development.
What to Expect
Most conferences will involve several different opportunities for the attendees. Usually, conferences will offer keynote speakers to address broad-interest topics for the field. Additionally, there will be various panels and other smaller sessions to focus on different topics that may not have as broad an interest.
There will likely be some time to network and socialize, which helps to build new connections between organizations. Moreover, there will also be some sort of merchant’s room or presenter’s hall, where different businesses will be present with products to assist the attendees’ organizations.
PEAK is an annual conference in Denver, Colorado. Held on March 11-13, 2019, PEAK offers multiple breakout sessions where they invite attendees to discuss a variety of topics that could be pertinent to running a nonprofit organization.
Sessions from 2018 looked at data-sharing tools, payment trends, accessibility, data security, and other topics that might affect your organization on a daily basis. These topics, along with others to be addressed in 2019, make PEAK an excellent choice for a general-purpose organization.
Also held in March (20-22) in Tucson, Arizona, Funding Forward is a grantmaking conference specifically focused on LGBTQ issues. Focusing more on connecting grantmakers dedicated to LGBTQ causes, Funding Forward offers the opportunity for its attendees to connect and learn from one another, to coordinate their efforts, and to determine how to make the most impact in their communities. They also have breakout sessions and panels planned to help grow the missions of every attendee.
Taking place May 14-16 in Chicago, Illinois, Collective Impact claims to bring together funders, partners, and community members for dialogue and peer learning. They offer opportunities for individuals from all areas of the grant process to get together and discuss ways to improve the process and their communities as well.
Some of the sessions from 2018 addressed implementing your organization’s vision, building a local collaborative group, and building youth leadership, among other topics.
The Learning Conference 2019
On May 29 and 30 in Seattle, Washington, The Learning Conference will be offering attendees different sessions and speakers, as well as opportunities to network with others in the grantmaking field. Rather than the broad scope of other conferences, The Learning Conference focuses more on two of the vital aspects of grantmaking: evaluation and teaching.
Nonprofit Technology Conference
The Nonprofit Technology Conference will take place March 13-19 in Portland, Oregon. Their goal is to connect your nonprofit organization with various businesses that can make technology work for you. In past years, they have covered topics such as how to build a website or an app, how best to utilize social media, how to prevent scams and malware from infecting your nonprofit’s network, and other useful topics in today’s technologically saturated business climate.
Regardless of the goals of your organization, there’s bound to be a conference that fits your needs. Whether you’re looking to network with others with similar goals, learn more about ways to improve your organization’s functionality, or find new paths to help your community and further your goals, one of these conferences will undoubtedly help your organization and influence growth.