Our journey to create an esy-to-use online tool for citizen initiatives to report their performance and impact started almost a year ago! A team of dedicated volunteers worked with small organisations and did extensive research into what funders want to understand what such a tool would do.
Then our first dedicated Impact Platform volunteer, Valentina, worked with a developer to make it a reality!
When Francesca joined the team a few months ago, the main goal became to create a process to introduce potential user organisations to the tool and train our whole team alongside. This includes meticulous documentation that also allowed anyone joining the Impact Platform team afterwards to be able to continue the work.
Onboarding the first 2 organisations
We are currently working with two organisations to test the platform. They are both citizen initiatives working with the asylum-seeking, migrant and refugee population in Athens and are addressing important challenges that come with living as an asylum-seeker, refugee or migrant in a European city. They are going beyond the initial emergency aid into the issues that affect integration and inclusion.
Hestia Hellas provides mental health services in Athens, especially to families. They have a diverse range of services, from 1-on-1 counselling services to employability trainings and a child-friendly space. Their goal is to heal the trauma that comes from displacement and the limbo state cause by asylum procedures.
Hestia Hellas was the first organisation to start using the platform. We assisted them with the process of gathering all information about their work and impact so far and coached them on how the platform works.
Find out more about Hestia Hellas here: www.hestiahellas.org
An rganisation supporting specifically young single men living in precarious conditions and homelessness in Athens from 16 to 21. They are one of the most vulnerable population as very few services are designed with them in mind and they can easily fall pray to criminalisation and prostitution.
The team is currently is working with our Impact Platform team to gather and organise all their data from the past 2-3 years of operations and start using their dashboard.
Find out more about their work here: velosyouth.org
Where are we now?
Lessons learned so far
- It takes the right partners: The platform is the most useful to citizen organisations who have been considering building a reporting process but do not have the expertise or capacity within the team. Organisations that have not began keeping track of any metrics or that already have an elaborate system are less likely to have the capacity to use it or will find it too time-consuming to make the switch.
- It takes skill: For the onboarding process, we need a specific profile for our team members. People with previous consulting experience or an IT background are ideal. It takes time to find them but when we do, they are just as excited about the Platform as we are!
- It takes time: To reflect on 2-3 years of operations for a small organisation and gather data spread across different systems and people take time, and we need to be ready whenever they complete that to immediately take them on the next step.
Our team is evolving
To simplify the work for our team, we've split the Impact Platform role into two parts:
- Outreach & Training: Meeting with organisations, presenting the platform and assisting them in the process of collecting all their data. This role is currently filled by our new team member Eunice, who ensure the organisation is properly introduce to how the platform works and ready to use it autonomously.
- User Support: Once an organisation is using the platform, it's important to make sure they continue submiting their monthly updates and that all is working well for them. Florence, our Field Volunteer, maintains that relationship with them.
Looking at the next organisation
Our next goal is to identify the next organisation that would like to receive the training and start using the platform. We hope to start publishing reports on the aggregated impact citizen organisations are having based on the numbers and data they are collecting on the platform!