Today was an exciting, inspiring and impactful day as we were finally able to have Vu Le join us in person for a Catapult Institute Plenary session at The Vogel - the beautiful new theater at Count Basie Center for the Arts.

Vu is the writer for the Nonprofit AF Blog, as well as a speaker, vegan, Pisces, and the former Executive Director of RVC, a nonprofit in Seattle that promotes social justice by developing leaders of color, strengthening organizations led by communities of color, and fostering collaboration between diverse communities.

Vu talked to our nonprofit community about A Time for Boldness: Reimagining Nonprofits and Philanthropy. In these turbulent times, nonprofits continue to play a critical role protecting and strengthening our community. But like air, our sector is often invisible and under-appreciated. Our community needs us to own our power, unlock our full potential, and forge a bolder path into the future. This includes re-examining many philosophies and practices that we believe are unchangeable. The way we do fundraising, capacity building, and evaluation. The relationships between funders and nonprofits. Our ingrained sense of scarcity and martyrdom. The hunger games. As the challenges facing our community become more entrenched, we can no longer afford to doubt ourselves or do the same things we’ve always done.

We talked about the state of the sector and Vu challenged us to think about what it looks like to be BOLD. He also talked about barriers and immunity to change as well as the effects of childhood and trauma. Small groups had a chance to discuss these topics and report out to the full group. At the end of the session, everyone went away with:

  • New ways of thinking about the value, power, and practices of our nonprofits
  • How to unlock the full potential of our nonprofits and those who work within them
  • New ways of thinking about the nonprofit/funder partnership
  • How to collaborate to build a bolder vision for our sector and our society.
Vu has a "no-BS approach" and is not afraid to call out nonprofits, funders or anyone to empower us all to do better. You can stay up-to-date with Vu and his thoughts on the sector by reading Nonprofit AF.