Archive for the ‘Resource Alliance News’ Category

Join the Resource Alliance Advisory Panel

Posted on: December 15th, 2022 by Cat O Broin No Comments

Wanted: Radical thinkers, community advocates, & passionate changemakers

The Resource Alliance exists to support and inspire resource mobilisers to develop the knowledge, tools, and connections necessary to fuel their purpose.

We support a highly engaged community through access to the innovative thinking, best practices, and collaborative networks necessary to ensure they are constantly growing in their ability to resource the causes they serve.

The Advisory Panel is a small group of experienced, motivated volunteers who care deeply about our work and about the sector as a whole. The panel provides insight and advice and helps to ensure the services we provide, including FRO and our Global Community, exceed the expectations of our community. The panel also leads on curation for the International Fundraising Congress.

We are seeking a small number of volunteers to join the panel.

Panel members should have:

  • Experience working in the social impact sector
  • Expertise in particular subject areas (such as fundraising or comms)
  • A broad network of contacts in the sector globally
  • Experience of attending & contributing to Resource Alliance events

Volunteers must be able to commit to six four-hour virtual meetings annually, as well as time outside of these meetings for planning, strategy, & support.

If you are interested in joining the Advisory Panel, please email ruby@resource-alliance.org with your name, organisation, a description of your role, and a summary of your skills & experience. Tell us why you’re interested in being part of the panel, and what you think you will bring to the role.


“We have to keep going”: Fundraising in wartime Ukraine

Posted on: September 29th, 2022 by Cat O Broin No Comments

Luda Kryzhanovska is a Ukrainian fundraiser and one of the speakers at this year’s International Fundraising Congress: IFC 2022. She will be speak in a workshop on crisis fundraising and how to prepare for what you hope will never come. You can read more about the workshop here.

Luda spoke with Petra Hoogerwerf for Vakblad fondsenwerving and what follows is a translation of Petra’s article. You can find the original piece here.

Liudmyla “Luda” Kryzhanovska was the last speaker at the fundraising day, speaking about her work in Ukraine setting up an impact hub in an old factory. During her talk, the air alarm went off and the screen went black. People in the room held their breath: this is what it is like to live in wartime. After a few minutes, Luda came back on screen from her hiding place, with her four-year-old son at her feet. As if it were the most natural thing in the world, she continued her explanation of her organisation, Promprylad.Renovation organisation. At the end of August, the Trade Journal asked her how the situation is now in Ukraine.

“Around Independence Day (24 August), there was a lot of panic. There were about 170 bombings from Russia. The situation now seems ‘stable’ again. The good news is that our army has received better weapons to deploy in the occupied territories. We still ask the USA, Europe, UK, and Israel for efficient air protection systems. Cities in the east of the country are attacked so often, every day, that our protection system cannot cope. And even though we are located in the west of Ukraine, more than 1,000 kilometres from the front, there are days when the alarm sounds eight times and we have to go to the shelter. These rockets are fired from Belarus or the Black Sea. This week, civilian targets were also hit, such as a train station. If there were more security through good air defences, we would have more time for our work and the fight.

“We can no longer make long-term plans.”

The first weeks after the invasion we were in shock. I remember a meeting with partners from Europe and Africa and I expected an escalation in the east, but I did not see the scale of the invasion coming.

You ask what has changed since the invasion. It is so much, it is difficult to name. The most important thing is that we can no longer make long-term plans, while at the same time we see that our work is very important for the construction of our country. We were working on the biggest project in the field of industrial heritage, to use it for community building in our city Frankivsk. After this, we planned to set up similar projects in the east of the country because there are a lot of old industrial factories there. That is no longer possible.

The first three weeks, we stopped our activities to establish a local fund to support the military and territorial defence. We did this together with local communities, companies, and NGOs. We bought things that I would never want to buy, such as weapons. These activities have now been placed in a separate organisation.

Before the war, we had about 6,000 square metres that we used in the factory; at the end of the year it will be 17,000 square metres, for companies and NGOs. We decided to help them move from eastern Ukraine and Kiev to our premises. The companies in the east are losing their markets, including those in Russia. They need advice on exporting to and cooperating with other organisations in Europe. At one point, we had as many as 500 requests. The staff of US Aid, the big aid organisation, is also housed with us. We also support employees in finding housing, for example. We look for work for people who have lost their jobs and who may be able to do freelance work. There is a lot of IT expertise here, for example. We do stay true to what we can and cannot do. We are a platform and know many organisations that we connect. For example, the Office for the Promotion of Export of the Ministry of Economy is also based here and gives advice on exports.

“If we leave, we lose our country.”

In that first period, there were quite a lot of officials from organisations who wanted to convince us that all of Ukraine would be occupied in a few days and we should go abroad. We think we should stay in Ukraine to keep the economy going and to keep our knowledge. If we leave, we will lose our country. We want to stay here and we want to win the war. We have to keep going.

We found out that we have to keep doing the same thing but work faster. We wanted to bring together companies and organisations as an impact hub for issues in society and we were already working on the Ukraine that we dream about. About the new economy, new forms of urban development, and creating meeting places. In short, we want to help people in their development. The new economy is no longer about the mentality of factory workers, but about other skills such as learning English, learning to work in teams, and setting up other forms of education.

One of our activities is to promote book reading, especially among children. Now we organise discussion groups for refugees and people living here, which contributes to their integration. Some of them only speak Russian and therefore still have to learn our language. We help veterans returning from the front by getting better physically in our gym and we provide mental support through psychologists who work at the university.

Our fundraising approach has changed due to the situation. There are many international organisations in Ukraine that now give grants to NGOs for basic needs. But we are not an NGO. We are a platform and revitalise an industrial factory. We need ten million dollars for this. For the reconstruction and heating, for example, but also for our impact goals such as a makers space and food hub. Before the invasion, we appealed to corporations but we realised we couldn’t do that anymore because they want to support the military. We are working on a new case for support. We appealed to the European Union, but such a process takes two years. That’s why we don’t have the time for that. Our course now is to raise funds internationally from major international organisations and foundations. We discuss our plans with them and see if their policy is in line. We are also looking for partners for joint applications. We started with online fundraising, but we have little experience with that. And for material we are looking for sponsors in kind.

“Large NGOs should work with local organisations.”

People and NGOs from abroad can help us in different ways: we seek cooperation with similar or complementary organisations in Europe for applications. Keep talking about the war, don’t let it become ‘normal’. I call on humanitarian organisations to buy resources here because the money must stay here and people must continue to work here. Do not send water or food: we have no shortage of them. Large NGOs should work with local organisations. These better understand the needs of our people. People do not want (emergency) help, but rather support to be able to continue to take care of themselves.

We are optimistic about winning the war. Everyone is very willing to commit themselves to the military forces and people follow various training courses to prepare themselves, for example on the use of weapons or the provision of medical care. We fight for freedom and development of our country and are prepared to die for it.

Hear Luda speak and meet her in person at IFC 2022 this 18-21 October. Find out more and register here.

Hiring: Events Coordinator

Posted on: June 27th, 2022 by Cat O Broin No Comments

We’re hiring for an exciting events role!

Our new Events Coordinator will work with our Head of Global Engagement and Events to provide support for the International Fundraising Congress and Fundraising Online as well as our other online and in-person events.

You can download the full job description, along with details of how to apply, here.


Hiring: Director of Partnerships

Posted on: June 20th, 2022 by Cat O Broin No Comments

We’re hiring for an exciting new role!

Our new Director of Partnerships will work across the Resource Alliance to build successful long-term partnerships with a wide range of organisations from foundations to private sector partners, strengthening our mission and vision. The successful candidate will work closely with the CEO as we look to grow our engagement and income.

You can download the full job description, along with details of how to apply, here.


An urgent message from our friends in Ukraine

Posted on: March 28th, 2022 by Cat O Broin No Comments

Eugenia Mazurenko, CEO of Zaguriy Foundation in Ukraine, has issued an urgent appeal to the international NGO community.

Last week, prompted by the attrocities being perpetrated in Ukraine, we hosted humanitarian, global leader, and changemaker Amanda Seller for a session on fundraising for humanitarian crises.

During the session, Eugenia Mazurenko asked to speak. Eugenia is the CEO of the Zagoriy Foundation, a nonprofit in Ukraine that “acts as a role model for implementing sustainable charitable activities in Ukraine.”

Eugenia’s message was clear: Grassroots organisations in Ukraine are running out of money, and donations from international organisations have been too slow to come in.

These are her words.

“Before the war, Zagoriy Foundation aimed to develop a culture of giving. We conducted research on giving, developed institutional philanthropy and trust in foundations, and provided them with grants to improve efficiency. With the advent of war, the priorities of each of us changed, and most of our projects had to be cancelled. But we kept loyalty to our mission and decided to stick to it in the new conditions.

Every nonprofit organisation in Ukraine has now faced the new realities of war. Most will continue to work despite all the difficulties, help their wards, or solve current wartime problems. Therefore, we strive to support Ukrainian organisations, identify current needs, and promote coordination and partnership within the sector.

In the early days of the war, organisations could quickly cover rapidly growing needs in the wake of a general increase in requests and a desire to help. However, after a while, including due to frequent fraud cases, there was a request to check the transparency of foundations and initiatives. Thus, our team took part in the reporting check and verification of bona fide funds.

However, accountability is not all it takes to make the sector work effectively in times of war. Civil society should work in advance and strengthen their positions in fundraising and relationships with donors to build connections and keep the workflow stable.

Zagoriy Foundation has more than 498 grassroots organizations in the CRM system and 556 organisations on the map of good on Giving Tuesday’s website in Ukraine.

We would be thankful to international community help us to continue supporting civil society in Ukraine.

We believe this moment in time has the potential to be a tangible step forward in the move toward localisation of support, to advance the #ShiftThePower and decolonisation debates, and to change humanitarian support models for the better.

If your organisation can support Eugenia’s appeal please reach out to us and we will connect you, or contact Zagoriy Foundation directly.

The Resource Alliance announces leadership transition

Posted on: March 2nd, 2022 by Cat O Broin No Comments

A message from Bill Toliver, Chair of the Resource Alliance.

Community Members, Colleagues, and Partners,

I am writing to announce an important leadership transition at the Resource Alliance. Prior to taking on the leadership of the Resource Alliance, Brian Higgins was well known across Ireland as a thought leader in the field of mental health. Brian has been offered a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reconceive the delivery of mental health and disability services in Ireland, and has stepped down from his role as our CEO.

While we are sad to see him go, it is impossible to think of a circumstance in which we would try to talk him out of such an opportunity to make a profound difference in people’s lives. We not only support him in this important new role, we have agreed to waive the termination clause of his employment contract so he can begin his new work with the urgency it requires. His last “official” day with Resource Alliance will be 04 April 2022 — though he will continue working with us on a pro bono basis over the next few months and, of course, be with us at IFC 2022! Please join us in thanking Brian for his service to our community and wishing him the very best in this important new role.

Please also join us in welcoming Willeke van Rijn as she steps into Brian’s role, effective immediately! Willeke is a superbly talented leader, well known and respected by the global fundraising community. She has held senior positions with SOS Children’s Villages, Oxfam, and FUNDES — working across Europe, Latin America, Asia, and Africa. For those of you who do not know her, you will soon find Willeke to be a passionate advocate for RA, IFC, and the fundraising community at large. She also happens to be a truly genuine human being — who, believe it or not, grew up just a few kilometers from Noordwijk in the Netherlands (the home of IFC). She has been intimately involved in RA operations for some time and began the handover process with Brian in mid-February, so the transition is straightforward and already underway.

Finally, we are living through incredibly challenging times, and the social impact community is bearing much of the burden of helping humankind find a “better way”. It is a source of inspiration and hope that the people and organisations we serve continue to build solidarity and strengthen community while so many are creating factions and driving polarisation. It is a true gift that good people like Brian and Willeke are willing to step into the fray and lead during these unprecedented times.

With respect, gratitude, and a heartfelt prayer for peace in our fragile world,

Bill Toliver, Resource Alliance Chair

P.S. Please feel free to connect with Willeke (willeke@resource-alliance.org) or me (bill@resource-alliance.org) and you can continue to reach Brian through the Resource Alliance as well (brian@resource-alliance.org).

2020 Global Fundraising Awards

Posted on: April 15th, 2020 by Resource Alliance No Comments

2020 Resource Alliance Global Fundraising Awards – Nominations now open!

With the entire world starting to work differently, responding to changing demands and a range of different challenges, people are rising up, showing courage, commitment, innovation and becoming the agents of change that the world needs. 

This year we want to dedicate the 2020 Resource Alliance Global Fundraising Awards to the innovative fundraisers and changemakers who are navigating the sector through this crisis. 

This is an opportunity not only to be recognised for your dedication and passion, but also to let the world know how you use that dedication and passion to help create lasting, positive change in the world.

Your success is all of our success, since as a sector we can learn from one another, encourage one another and celebrate one another.

So please take some time to nominate someone who you feel meets the criteria in the four categories below. They could be your colleagues, your staff, your boss… or yourself.


  • Winners will be recognised formally by the Resource Alliance for their outstanding contribution

  • This is a unique opportunity to showcase their individual / organisation’s work on a global platform

  • Winners will receive a grant to support the work they are doing, as well as a variety of other benefits


2020 Global Fundraising Innovator of the Year

This award is not just about money. The Global Fundraising Innovator of the Year has transformed the way their organisation works in response to the crisis. They have seen the challenges and faced them down with determination to rethink, regroup, reorganise in order to move away from transactional fundraising and into a healthy, holistic and sustainable income stream. They have set their organisation on a new financial course that will withstand the day-to-day ups and downs of economies, donor trust and interest, and the myriad other factors that can disrupt even the best fundraising plans.

The Activator Award

This award goes to an individual, campaign or collaboration that motivates the masses and activates the unstoppable force that is the power of people standing united for large-scale impact. The Activator coalesces individual donations and voices into a social movement intent on rocking the world.

The Rule-Breaker Award

Is this how fundraising is supposed to look? The Rule-Breaker Award goes to an individual or campaign which breaks the rules and paradigms of traditional fundraising. They pull the ‘F’ out of “IFC” and turn it on its head with an entirely unexpected way to resource work, creating a fresh and more sustainable model of resource development.

The Change Accelerator Award

Forward thinking. Progressive. Bold. The Change Accelerator Award goes to an individual who is advanced in their thinking, daring in their approach – and tired of the status quo. Their ideas are bigger, their goals loftier and their timeline faster. Their giant strides overshadow the baby steps of hesitation and timidity. They inspire us to the fearless pursuit of accelerating change in a time when we must displace fearfulness with fearlessness and strive for big impact. The Change Accelerator dares to live life in the fast lane of change.


The awards are free to enter, and nominations are open to all collaborations, organisations and individuals in the social impact sector.

Applications are open from 16 April to 31 July 2020, and the winners will be announced in August.


For any enquiries, please contact Ruby at ruby@resource-alliance.org 


Global virtual summit launched to support the charity sector’s response to Covid-19

Posted on: March 25th, 2020 by Resource Alliance No Comments

Global virtual summit launched to support the charity sector’s response to Covid-19

  • The summit is supported by charity sector conference and training organisations around the world, made possible by Salesforce and hosted on Fundraising Everywhere
  • Conference live streamed on April 2nd between 12pm – 6pm BST / 7am – 1pm EST
  • Two virtual conference tracks on charity and fundraising response, plus additional resource library to support skills and well-being
  • Other charity conferences supporting the project by providing individual content
  • Free for everyone and available globally

The Resource Alliance is delighted to be part of a consortium, working together to respond to the situation faced by the charity sector as a result of COVID-19. 

With growing concerns from charities about how to respond in this time of crisis, the virtual conference has been curated to help connect charities and fundraisers, enabling shared learning to support a response with confidence and clarity.

Each session has been hand-selected and curated with COVID-19’s impact on the charity sector as its focus and will be presented online on April 2nd between 12pm – 6pm BST / 7am – 1pm EST.

Sessions are 45 minutes long including live Q&A with the speaker. Two tracks will run consecutively on Fundraising Everywhere’s website, fundraisingeverywhere.com, which attendees can interact and choose from throughout.

Attendance is free but attendees must register at fundraisingeverywhere.com/covid19.

Attendees can choose between the twelve live sessions on offer and will have access to all recorded content afterwards, plus a bonus video resource library, for as long as the pandemic impacts the sector.

Other charity sector partners including the Institute of Fundraising, Charity Comms, CharityDigital and Third Sector are supporting the project by using their speaker and charity connections to provide individual content.

The live stream will be subtitled in English for live viewers and available in other languages post-event.

Speakers and sessions

Planned sessions include:

  • Setting up a response task force
  • Working with your board during a crisis
  • Diversifying quickly
  • Creating digital campaigns
  • Mobilising volunteers during a lockdown
  • Becoming digital focussed
  • Campaigning in a crisis
  • Adapting strategic objectives during a crisis
  • Changing plans with funders
  • Engaging with HNWI during a crisis
  • How to survive and thrive through and beyond COVID-19
  • Turning cancelled events digital

Plus a bonus resource library on:

  • Community fundraising during COVID-19
  • Telephone fundraising
  • Legacy fundraising asks during a pandemic
  • Remote working
  • Time management
  • Well-being
  • Engaging with the media
  • Running virtual events on social media
  • Supporter experience during COVID-19
  • Making sure your COVID-19 response is inclusive

Confirmed speakers so far include:

  • Beth Kanter
  • Charity So White
  • Ian Mitlock (Charity Excellence Framework)
  • Kishshana Palmer
  • Ligia Pena (Greenpeace)
  • Rebecca Davies (Save The Children)
  • Sam Laprade
  • Tereza Litza (Lightful)
  • Wayne Murray (Audience)

There will also be live hosting from Fundraising Everywhere’s co-founders, Nikki Bell and Simon Scriver to engage with speakers and attendees. The virtual platform hosts a chat function where attendees can get involved with their own discussions and network with each other and speakers.

COVID19 Update

Posted on: March 16th, 2020 by Resource Alliance No Comments

As the COVID19 pandemic progresses the work of social impact organisations will become increasingly difficult over the coming months, especially for those on the frontline of this crisis. 

However, we know that by combining the talents, expertise and dedication of our global community of friends and experts we will be able to tackle the unprecedented levels of change ahead of us together. The Resource Alliance will continue to be a platform for connection, friendship, knowledge and advice. Our commitment to serve our global community will not be diminished. 

We are still planning confidently for IFC 2020, still over 200 days away, but after consultation with our partners in South Africa and Brazil together we have made the decision to postpone our South Africa and Brazil IFC Pop Ups until the situation stabilises. We will continue to carefully assess the situation over the coming weeks and, in the spirit of complete transparency we will share any updates with our community as they become available. Our commitment to serve our global community will not be diminished. 

Our team are on hand to listen to your questions, concerns and ideas. Contact us on social media or at contact@resource-alliance.org when you need us.  

In the meantime, do what you can to keep safe, stay informed and look after each other.  

Introducing four new Trustees

Posted on: March 11th, 2020 by Resource Alliance No Comments

The Resource Alliance is proud to introduce four new Trustees

We are delighted to announce the appointment of four new Trustees to the Resource Alliance Board.
Each of these incredible women bring a wealth of experience, talent and wisdom to our leadership, and we are greatly appreciative of the contribution they have already begun to make.

Here’s more on Nana, Naila, Ingrid and Willeke.

Resource Alliance New Trustees


Ghana 🇬🇭

Nana is Executive Director of the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI), with 19 years’ experience in the civil society sector. Nana is a passionate advocate for an effective, efficient, influential and sustainable civil society in West Africa.

A lawyer by profession, Nana has worked extensively on governance, human rights, philanthropy and capacity building with national, international, continental and regional organisations. Nana spearheaded the establishment of a legal division for the Women’s Initiative for Self-Empowerment (WISE) and volunteered as WISE legal counsel.

Read more about Nana here.


Egypt 🇪🇬

Naila has built an award-winning career across several continents. She is a Peabody Award recipient with experience in executive project management, media production and strategic development and communications. In 2014, she took on the role of CEO at the Arab Foundations Forum (AFF), a membership-based network of associations and foundations in the Arab region.

Prior to joining AFF, Naila spent 14 years at Sesame Workshop where she was responsible for managing overall strategic project management and development, production, content and creative aspects of Sesame Workshop’s multi-media Sesame Street projects in the MENA region, sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia.

Read more about Naila here.



India 🇮🇳

Ingrid is the founder Director of the Centre for Social Impact and Philanthropy (CSIP) at Ashoka University, the first academic centre in South Asia to focus on these themes.

As well as her roles as Executive Director of CHILDLINE India Foundation and CEO of Hivos India, Ingrid served as Secretary General for 4 years at CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation, an influential global network of non-profit organisations.

Ingrid has served on several advisory boards including: The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the World Economic Forum (WEF) and Fair Share of Women Leaders to mention just a few.

Read more about Ingrid here.



Austria 🇦🇹

Willeke is a highly experienced resource development manager currently heading up the Strategy and Analysis team at SOS Children’s Villages International, the world’s largest charity focused on providing a loving home for children around the world.

Prior to that Willeke spent 13 years at Oxfam as a global fundraising strategy advisor for affiliates all around the world providing strategic fundraising oversight, R&D of new fundraising markets and channels, and entry set up and market development of new fundraising departments and personnel.

Read more about Willeke here.

Carolina Nyberg-Steiser Bursary Programme

Posted on: February 27th, 2020 by Resource Alliance No Comments
Carolina Nyberg-Steiser Bursary Programme

Carolina Nyberg-Steiser Bursary Programme

In October 2017, Greenpeace campaign Carolina Nyberg-Steiser lost her life in the Brazilian Amazon in the course of her work. As Head of Partnerships, Artists & Influencers at Greenpeace, she raised millions in funding that enabled not just Greenpeace, but the wider environmental and human rights movements, to drive change for a better world. 

Greenpeace and the Resource Alliance, with the support of Carolina’s family, have developed a bursary programme in her name with an aim to empower other incredible young women who care as deeply for the wellbeing of our planet, and the people that inhabit this earth, as Carolina did.

Applications for IFC 2022 are now open

The Carolina Nyberg-Steiser Bursary is open to women up to 36 years of age, working in the Social Impact Sector. Make sure you apply before Monday 4th July 2022.


Recipients receive access to IFC 2022, with a masterclass and onsite accommodation included (from 18th – 21st October). The bursary programme will also cover to cost of your travel to and from the Netherlands, and provide you with a mentor to support your learning journey. 


“Receiving a Carolina Nyberg-Steiser Bursary program place was an incredible privilege. Attending IFC Asia gave me the opportunity to challenge my thinking, learn from thought leaders and network with people from all around the world with diverse perspectives and incredible stories. More than anything it left me with a profound sense of purpose and connection and invigorated my determination to come together with like-minded people to change the world.”

Karen McGrath, Global Marketing Manager at Act for Peace, Australia

Carolina’s Story

Carolina dedicated her working life to the protection of nature, bringing people together to save what is best in this world. She could reach deep into the heart of an issue, grip it, and then reach into your heart and leave it there.

Carolina’s conviction was always that if we are to win the greatest challenges of mankind, Greenpeace must forge new alliances and collaborations that create a greater and more permanent impact than what we could achieve alone. The partnerships Carolina created and the millions she raised enabled not just Greenpeace, but the wider environmental and human rights movements, to drive change for a better world. The influencers who accepted her invitations to join their voices with ours helped to engage millions of people to speak powerful words of truth.

Her skill in securing enthusiastic support from powerful people was inspiring. With her colleagues she freely shared these skills, as freely as she shared her deep and passionate affinity for the world she sought to protect. At home and across the globe Carolina always acted with courage and sought to empower and enable, lifting others up to reach new heights in their work and their leadership.

The impact report of previous years of the Carolina Nyberg-Steiser Bursary Programme can be found here.


“Carolina was an incredible young woman with a huge heart and astonishing determination and at just 29 years of age she had, with grace, intelligence and sheer force of will achieved so very much. In everything she did in support of Greenpeace’s mission, Carolina was courageous, inspiring and uplifting. She sought to empower others to reach new heights in their work and their leadership.”

Celeste Stewart, Fundraising Director at Greenpeace Nordic


Previous participants in the Carolina Nyberg-Steiser Bursary Programme



Programme Manager for Buffalo City Sports Academy, South Africa



Fundraising Events and Marketing Manager for The Chaeli Campaign, South Africa



Fundraising Assistant for the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation, South Africa



Story Lead at TSIBA, South Africa



Chief Financing Officer for Dream Factory Foundation, South Africa



Chief Operating Officer, Feenix, South Africa



Communications & Stakeholder Manager for Shine Literacy, South Africa



Development Coordinator for S-CAPE, South Africa 



Project Coordinator and Development Facilitator for Built Environment Support Group, South Africa



Alpha South Africa Equipping Team Leader, South Africa



ECD Programme Director for Zero2Five Trust, South Africa



Marketing and Communications Manager for Symphonia for South Africa



Program manager for Sizanani, South Africa



Communication and Partnership Associate for Restless Development Nepal



Digital Campaigner for Greenpeace Canada



Founder of Manos de Colores: Artesanías del Ecuador



Fundraising officer for Transparency International, Cambodia



Global Marketing Manager – Ration Challenge for Act for Peace, Australia



Co-Founder for VIGYANshaala, India & UK

The Carolina Nyberg-Steiser Bursary Programme is supported by Greenpeace and the Resource Alliance

Do you know a Change Accelerator?

Posted on: February 25th, 2020 by Resource Alliance No Comments

The world is full of change makers accelerators.

You no doubt know a few yourself – change accelerators are people who are:

  • forward thinking
  • progressive and bold
  • advanced in their thinking and daring in their approach
  • brave and not afraid to push forward 
  • leading the way and drive change in enterprising and fearless ways
  •  making an impact that is both faster and bigger

You already have someone in mind, don’t you?

We would love to shine a light on them and share their inspiring stories with The Resource Alliance family around the world in our monthly newsletter.

But first we have to meet them! And we’re counting on you to make the introduction.

Just email your suggestions of who you think we should interview as part of our regular Change Accelerator feature and why, and together we can celebrate those amazing individuals who dare to live life in the fast lane of change.

Suggest a Change Accelerator  


Change Accelerator #1: Joanna Sustento

To kick off this month’s feature we would like to introduce our first change accelerator Joanna Sustento – Joanna was one of our incredible IFC 2019 closing plenary speakers.

In 2013, Joanna lost her entire family to Super Typhoon Haiyan – one of the strongest storms in human history, which claimed more than 10,000 lives in just two hours.

Since then, she has been telling her story around the world to put a human face on the climate crisis and to highlight the devastating impact of climate change.

Watch Joanna’s amazing IFC 2019 closing plenary talk >>

Changing the world in a world of change

Posted on: September 3rd, 2018 by IFC Holland

While there are many causes striving to meet all kinds of needs, the Resource Alliance is dedicated to meeting the needs of social causes and the people who work with them. DTV’s Derek Humphries spoke to Resource Alliance CEO Kyla Shawyer about the changing world of social good.

DH: Just to set some context for readers who don’t know the Resource Alliance, how would you sum up the organisation?

KS: We’re here to support changemakers, fundraisers, people who want to make the world a better place. Fundamentally we do that by connecting people so that they can share their learning and create new ways to make an impact.

Historically we’ve done that through flagship events: IFC in the Netherlands, IFC Asia in Bangkok and gatherings in India, South Africa and elsewhere. Today and moving forward, it’s not just about events but about a 24/7 conversation via digital channels, events, and any media necessary! We’re powered by a massive array of worldwide volunteers, and by thought leaders and practitioners who generously share their skills and insight for the greater good.

DH: I know you must meet thousands of changemakers worldwide. Would you say they face common issues?

KS: Of course there are regional variations in terms of culture, political context, rate of economic development, humanitarian and environmental crises, and so on. But there seems to be a universal thirst for better, faster change. For new thinkers and social good entrepreneurs there is frustration that they are stifled by bureaucracy, often thwarted by a no-risk culture that fears change and cannot countenance the failure.

We are all working in the same profoundly disrupted world; in many places an increasingly polarised world where people are more and more keen to find a sense of purpose, an outlet for their values. That’s great news for good causes if they can truly align their organisational values with those of people who want to turn their own personal values into action.

DH: There’s been much doom and gloom in the world of fundraising, and talk of a model that is broken, so it’s good to hear your optimism!

KS: Isn’t it the Chinese character for the word crisis that is made up of the two characters for threat and opportunity? I prefer to see the opportunity.

I do recognise what you mean when you talk of a broken fundraising model. But fundraising also has many beacons of brilliance that we should not overlook. The broken part is fundraising that is transactional and shallow-touch. But there is plenty of truly values-driven, deep-engagement fundraising that is working for organisations.

While fundraising remains vital, today more than ever we must recognise that creating change is not merely about money. It’s about all forms of capital: human, financial, and intellectual. It’s about unlocking the potential of whatever it takes to create change. Giving money is just one way we measure that.

DH: What gives you real hope that we may be heading in the right direction?

KS: People! Without a doubt people. I’m lucky enough to meet extraordinary people who are doing amazing work, often unsung, unnoticed, all over the world. I was recently in Bangkok for our IFC Asia event. We had a dozen people from Nepal, bursary-funded attendees from Bhutan, Australia and elsewhere, tech industry leaders sharing their insights, and every one of them with important knowledge to share and with much more they want to learn. It’s such an enriching and generous community.

Then there’s new ideas. Take something like Jeremy Heimans’ thinking, articulated in his book New Power. There’s rich thinking there in terms of how we understand old power and new power models, and how we decide which to use or whether to blend them.

I’m also encouraged by what I’ve seen through initiatives such as our Leadership Forum,. Here we aim to create space not just to share great ideas, but to convene people who will generate new breakthrough thinking. That non-competitive, truly collaborative space is a rare thing and we need to create more of it.

I’d say my hope also comes from the huge generosity our community has in sharing its know-how. It’s an open source mindset. At the Resource Alliance it’s been part of our DNA for nearly 40 years, and today we can use technology to share know-how and engage people in debate like never before.

DH: When you look at something like IFC Asia, what learnings do you take from it for yourself?

KS: I took a great lesson from Katy Grennier who spoke in the closing keynote session. She vividly brought to life the need for radical collaboration. We can all speak the jargon of 360-degree stakeholder consultation, but Katy breathes real life into this. She talks about the broken system, or systems, that we all blame for the world’s ills. What we need to do is

acknowledge that we are the system. To change the system, we need to challenge ourselves to listen differently, to engage with different people and to take radical responsibility for our own actions.

We all want to see change, and that means that we ourselves must be willing to change. That’s not always easy, but it’s vital.

DH: Disruption, radical collaboration…what do these things mean for your own organisation?

KS: In terms of events, it means ensuring that we constantly bring in fresh viewpoints, and that also means being more diverse and inclusive. That’s not a mere good intention, it’s something we vigorously pursue through robust KPIs. For example, at IFC this year we will have 62% female speakers. Nevertheless, we’re far from perfect. For example, our board has reasonable diversity in terms of nationality, but still has a male gender bias which we are proactively tackling. None of these things change unless you change them.

As for disruption, as an organisation and across all forms of social good work, we can’t afford to just ‘keep up’, we need to lead. And in doing so, our approach to leadership, the models we use, and how we put those models into practice must go beyond ‘fundraising’.

DH: Where you look across the sector, where do you see the most exciting changes taking place?

§ I’d first of all challenge the idea of a sector. What we see instead today is more of an ever-changing ecosystem of individuals, organisations, and movements. It’s highly fluid and rapidly changing. That can be unsettling given the human need for certainty and security. But it’s thrilling in terms of our ability to mobilise and engage large groups of people swiftly.

I’m hugely impressed by the social entrepreneurial start-ups that we see springing up worldwide, although there seems a particular energy across Asia. And I love the way some big, established INGOs are challenging themselves around how they are structured and truly embracing strategies of engagement. Then there’s the huge activity around crowd-funding, from individual campaigns that start small and suddenly accelerate to $20million, to the numerous individual crowdfunders inspired by simple, unfiltered storytelling such as those of Humans of New York.

Meanwhile, pretty much everywhere there are devoted intrapreneurs, changing established organisations from within. These people rarely get the same recognition as high-profile entrepreneurs, but their work can be every bit as effective.

And of course, even as we speak, there will be new initiatives taking off that we know nothing about yet. In all parts of the world we see initially loose ecosystems of changemakers morphing and uniting rapidly to find unexpected power through common cause. It’s a dynamic and invigorating time to be a changemaker.

‘This is article is from an interview that first appeared in Fundraising & Philanthropy magazine.