A core part of our mission at the LeadersTrust is to invest in the leadership and organizational capacity of changemakers. The Flexible Leadership Awards (FLA) is one of our time-tested models that provides long-term tailored support to leaders and organizations, funded by our collaborating foundations.
That includes organizations such as Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity (IM4HI), a multi-racial, multi-faith organization working for the dignity and full inclusion of immigrants and people impacted by incarceration. IM4HI fights for justice at the racialized intersection of mass incarcerations and immigrant rights and detention through trainings, education, regular prayer vigils at immigration detention centers, and support and connection of families who are or have experienced incarceration.
IM4HI staff and board worked closely with their FLA consultant, Saúl Sarabia, to develop a framework for unifying their immigration rights and anti-incarceration work. In addition, IMF4I worked alongside capacity coach, Mari Ryono, and independent consultant and FLA capacity coach, Inca Mohamed, to support IM4HI’s leadership and ultimately align its resources with its intended impact.
The turnaround for IM4HI on the matter of sustainability cannot be overstated. Each of their FLA plans included a focus on strengthening some dimension of the staff and board’s fundraising planning, strategy, skills and culture. And in tandem with the sharper strategic focus, the board-staff team led by Rev. Deborah dramatically improved the organization’s financial picture to the point of health. This is hard, hard work for nonprofits — particularly those of IM4HI’s size and mission. The leadership’s focus, persistence, and network-cultivation, over time, made all the difference- and epitomizes the kind of transformative impact we hope that our FLA investments will have.
Hearing from staff at the organization about their experience confirms the success of the FLA:
“Saúl is just a brilliant organizer and strategist. He helped me, and helped us, to understand the importance of racial equity and how to practice and advocate for racial equity. Also, he was very helpful in terms of outlining our social theory…really looking at how systemic racism is so embedded in our culture…not allowing us to compromise our values…that we should really advocate from the standpoint of our values.” –Reverend Dr. Larry Foy, Regional Director, Los Angeles, IM4HI
We are tremendously grateful to have had the opportunity to work alongside IM4HI to fortify and strengthen their organization. Their work is important to us, and we are thankful they exist.
To learn more about our FLA model and other organizations who have benefitted from this approach, read our FLA Reflections Report.
For more information on IM4HI’s growth journey, read IM4HI’s Journey in Faith: A Decade of Growth, A Decade of Impact.