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It sounds like a worthy endeavor, and I know that at least four active members of this community currently sit on Boards of Directors for non-profits -- so you can probably get some guidance here.
Can you provide more details? What specific steps have you taken so far, and what obstacles did you encounter with each? I doubt your community has a billboard at the city limits with the motto "We're afraid of change" or "The town where all girls have high self-esteem" -- so what have you tried so far, and what community actions or responses have led you to those conclusions?
I'm sure someone here has encountered whatever you're dealing with, but will need to know what that is exactly in order to offer suggestions.
Look forward to reading the responses. Best wishes.
Steps I've taken so far are
1) Advertising local paper, flyers, joining other organizations to network, collaboration efforts and a youth focus groups.
2) Obstacles I encountered with each were "not interested", had some funding but not alot because I don't have a tax exempt status, other organizations are more interested in working alone than collaborating and the focus group backfired when everyone decided to go their own way and not work together.
I need board of directors who are genuinely interested in my organizations efforts, advice on how to recruit sponsors for Young Women Leaders Program ywlp.virginia.edu. and how to go about getting tax exempt status for the program.
I agree that not having tax exempt status is a huge obstacle (given your mission). That's what I'd address first. Here is the link to a very clear, step-by-step guide on what you have to do to attain non-profit status:
Hope that helps. Let me also mention that leading a local group of volunteers is not necessarily any less challenging than leading a large scale multi-cultural, multi-national, multi-industry project team. It takes a well-developed set of leadership skills to produce the desired result in either case. A question I have to ask myself, when people just don't seem to be rallying behind a great purpose or mission is, "What am I'm doing (or not doing), as the leader, that's causing people to be so apathetic (or even hostile) about this?" I don't always like the answer, but if I'm honest with myself, there's usually something important I need to learn and do better.
Again, best wishes.
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I reside in a community that's fearful of change, it's hard trying to promote my all girl mentoring program when the community thinks or feels our girls in this city don't suffer with poor self esteem or are troubled individuals. I'm left with no where to turn for support to apply for 501c3 status or just resources to make this into a thriving career. Any advice on how to get people involved and on board?