Global Grassroots

Global Grassroots is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our mission is to catalyze women and girls as leaders of conscious social change in their communities. Global Grassroots' work is guided by four core values that form our theory of change: 1. Deepening personal consciousness and contributing towards the common good are both essential to social change. 2. One of the most effective levers of social change is a woman with the capability, resources, power, courage and inner commitment to initiate positive change for herself and others. 3. Sustaining and accelerating conscious social change requires investment in supporting, civil society architecture. 4. Mind-body trauma healing plus t...

Global Grassroots
1950 Lafayette Road
Suite 200, Box 1
Portsmouth, NH 03801
United States
603-643-0400
http://www.globalgrassroots.org

President & Founder

Gretchen Wallace

Management Team

Gretchen Steidle Wallace, Gyslaine Uwitonze, Heidi Luquer

Board of Directors

Jane Shahmanesh, Trish Jackson, Katie Doyle-Myers, Todd Kilburn, Alexis Hyder, Katy Lunardelli, Gretchen S Wallace, Gretchen Steidle Wallace

Project Leaders

Gretchen Wallace

Mission

Global Grassroots is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our mission is to catalyze women and girls as leaders of conscious social change in their communities. Global Grassroots' work is guided by four core values that form our theory of change: 1. Deepening personal consciousness and contributing towards the common good are both essential to social change. 2. One of the most effective levers of social change is a woman with the capability, resources, power, courage and inner commitment to initiate positive change for herself and others. 3. Sustaining and accelerating conscious social change requires investment in supporting, civil society architecture. 4. Mind-body trauma healing plus the opportunity for women to form groups and create community-based organizations to advance social change represents the most effective and holistic approach towards individual and community healing during post-conflict reconstruction. Our long-term vision is that vulnerable women will have the capacity and resources to lead conscious social change, sustained by their own communities.

Programs

Our core program is our Academy for Conscious Change, a social venture incubator that catalyzes vulnerable women change agents who wish to launch their own grassroots organizations. Our approach embraces a participatory development paradigm and integrates a holistic balance of personal and social transformation. The Academy lasts an average of 18 months, the pace of which is driven by the teams, and offers the following high-engagement support services in four phases: 1. Intensive, interactive 40-hour training program, incorporating:(a) conscious leadership and personal growth practices, (b) mind-body trauma healing, and (c) social entrepreneurship and non-profit management skills 2. 3- 6 months of hands-on non-profit venture development facilitation 3. Seed grants and implementation support 4. 12-months non-profit apprenticeship with ongoing, high-engagement advisory support Our participants include widows, young single mothers, genocide survivors, women living with HIV/AIDS, women with only a primary school education, and women subsistence farmers. We also welcome into our program men who are eager to combat the underlying issues affecting women and girls, and on average, approximately 10 percent of our participants are men. Our simple application requires that change agents form a team, identify their social issue priority and propose a solution to address that issue collectively. We target groups at the earliest stage of their idea development, and invite at least five representatives of each selected team into our program. PHASE 1: Intensive Training The first phase of the Academy is a 40-hour intensive, interactive training course that accelerates the process of personal and societal transformation with three primary content areas: Personal Growth and Leadership: Our curriculum begins by investing in a personal growth and social-emotional learning process for each change agent. Our objective is to help these future change leaders expand their sense of self-awareness, develop tools for transforming oppression and suffering, cultivate compassion and initiate change responsibly. We believe it essential for future social change leaders to invest as much in inner transformation as they do in outer solutions, so that they may avoid the pitfalls of burn-out, abuse of power or pursuits that detract from constructive social change. We share practices in meditation and breathing, and promote self-care to alleviate stress. Finally, by helping women map out their capabilities that can be leveraged for social change, we deepen their sense of agency, as they identify ways to make their own unique contribution. Trauma Healing: We believe that endeavors that give a voice to the disempowered and allow for the survivor to identify her value to community - and, even further, realize her capacity to change the aspects of community that failed her - provides a deeply powerful path for both individual and community healing. Global Grassroots' Academy for Conscious Change explicitly incorporates an avenue for personal as well as social repair. First, Global Grassroots program provides training in a range of mind-body techniques that have a scientifically-demonstrated impact in holistically addressing the broad range of symptoms of post-traumatic stress. Second, Global Grassroots provides opportunities for girls and women to form teams, which can also serve as support networks of survivors with similar experiences. Third, in its trainings on issue diagnosis and creative problem solving, Global Grassroots incorporates a process by which women and girls discover their inner power and identify assets and gifts that can be leveraged to create social change. In so doing, a girl or woman can reclaim her sense of personal value to society. Finally, Global Grassroots provides a pathway for designing a civil society organization that will advance social change from a place of deeper consciousness. This process provides a self-led opportunity to combat the failures of society, advocate for change within and by existing institutions, and create new programs to serve others. We believe this multi-pronged approach, integrating personal and social transformation, offers an optimal and holistic approach to trauma healing and post-conflict reconstruction. Social Entrepreneurship & Non-Profit Management Training: Finally, our training provides all of the skills needed to create a viable community-based organization or "micro-NGO" that will address a core issue facing women and girls, such as domestic violence, limited property rights or sexual exploitation. We begin by mapping social issue priorities and diagnosing core causes. Project teams then enter an intensive venture-design process to construct a mission and vision, theory of change, operational plan, organizational design, budget, creative resourcing strategies, evaluation metrics, strategic partnerships, a code of conduct and communications strategy. PHASE 2: Non-Profit Venture Development Following the academic portion of the program, teams move into a three to six month phase of hands-on organizational development support to prepare for launch. Our local staff works with each team to ensure that the new NGO is designed to be self-sufficient, has measurable goals and objectives, has conducted a baseline assessment of its chosen social issue, has a feasible operating and financial structure, has a strong organizational structure, and will work at the root level to create systemic change. PHASE 3: Seed Funding Ventures which meet our criteria for social impact and sustainability receive seed funding between $4000 - $6000 for their start-up costs in the form of a grant to cover 100% of the venture's start-up costs. Prior to funding, we require that each organization design and incorporate creative resourcing strategies that ensure the venture can meet its operating needs from stakeholders in its local community, ideally so that it does not need to depend upon further funding from foreign donors. Funding is disbursed across several tranches to allow us to work in close partnership with teams to protect for cost-overruns and facilitate bookkeeping. PHASE 4: Non-Profit Management Apprenticeship After launch, teams receive a further 12 months of high-engagement support during what is akin to a non-profit management apprenticeship. Our custom-designed advisory support includes re-teaching skills as applied to specific projects, reviewing bookkeeping, working with local government officials, supporting teams in their monitoring and evaluation process, arranging for expert volunteers to provide additional expertise, networking at the national level, providing mentoring, marketing and communications support, and consulting on financial sustainability. Global Grassroots' staff conducts site visits and regular program-specific consultations to help each venture reach self-sufficiency ideally within one year. Once operational, teams submit quarterly reports over 12 months, and conduct a detailed program assessment after one year in order to evaluate their impact.

Statistics on Global Grassroots

Financial Statistics

  • Annual Budget for 2014: $481,000
  • Annual Budget for 2008: $417,000
  • Maximum Annual Budget: $500,000
  • Other funding sources: NoVo Foundation, Segal Family Foundation, Imago Dei Fund, PECO Foundation, Rapidan Foundation, CarEth Foundation, Stone Family Foundation, Omidyar Global Fund of the Hawaii Community Foundation, Christ Church Board of World Fellowship, Sewell Family Foundation, St. James Trust, Pesky Family Foundation, individuals
  • Religious Affiliation: none
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