David B. Crowley's blog

Merry Christmas! Or Happy Holidays? A Social Capitalist Take

You are parting ways after a business meeting around this time of year, and note your colleague is pausing for a moment. Theymay well be thinking, “Merry Christmas! Or Happy Holidays?”, trying to summon an appropriate greeting for the season.

I know many friends are a bit frustrated that when they are excited about Christmas coming up, they need to filter their instinct to wish people “Merry Christmas!”. Saying “Happy Holidays” instead may feel like a watering down of an important celebration in the Christian tradition.Read more

Developing Young Leaders on #GivingTuesday

We've had a day to give thanks and two days to get shopping deals. Now, you can join SCI in making today #GivingTuesday! Today we are focusing on our goal to raise $1,700 to train young leaders, which is one of our year-end campaign objectives.

#GivingTuesday emphasizes teaching the importance of giving, a central element of the SCI youth leadership programming that trains over 250 Eastern Massachusetts teens in Boston, Fall River, Gloucester, Lynn and Woburn. Read more

Local Social Capitalists Help Milwaukee Youth Succeed

Role models in our communities are vital to youth success

During my drive to the office this morning, I learned about an interesting Milwaukee neighborhood initiative that is taking a "social capitalist" approach to helping young black males. OK, the NPR story didn't use the term, but I think it definitely applies! When one youth got arrested for some vandalism in the neighborhood, a man named Andre Ellis took initiative to turn the situation around. He said he'd pay the eleven year old $20 to spend a Saturday morning cleaning up the neighborhood around the area he had gotten into trouble. When the boy responded by coming for the clean-up with five friends, a new mentoring initiative called "We Got This" was underway.Read more

Connect for Healthy Communities Goal Reached!

Update: We did it! We set out on June 30 to raise the final $804 needed to meet our fiscal year-end fundriaising goal. Thanks the quick and generous response of our supporters, we raised $825 in the final day of our fiscal year and met our goal! With the final day donations added in, we raised over $20,000 in the home stretch of our fiscal year, which puts us in strong position as we start the new year. Below we've kept the original "final day" message as it provides a sense of our progress and current priorities.

We are getting very close to our Connect for Healthy Communities campaign goal. Last week we sent an email to our supporter list seeking to raise $1,438 that will be matched by SCI board members and in order to get us to our goal. Now we are down to $804 to raise before our fiscal year ends at midnight tonight (June 30). I hope you will consider helping us reach our goal by making a donation today!Read more

15 Ways Parents Can Encourage Active Citizenship

As the Dad of an 8 year-old, I certainly appreciate that there's a lot parents need to teach. We know parents play a key role in supporting our children's educational success, emotional development and much more. As we approach Mother's Day and Father's Day, we are celebrating the vital role parents play in developing the next generation of citizens. For instance, studies have shown that taking children to the polls increases the chance they will become voters as adults, and engaging in discussions of current affairs at the dinner table increases the likelihood that children will become politically active.

In our current spring campaign, we are providing donors a chance to recognize the important role a parent has played in teaching active citizenship. In addition, we'd like to share some ideas as to how parents can encourage active citizenship with their children. Thanks to my colleague, Karen Rice, for many of these ideas below.

15 family activities to encourage active citizenshipRead more

Millennials Finding Their Own Ways to Engage

I read data about the Millennial generation with great interest. Sure, size has something to do with it. Now the largest and most diverse generation of Americans, Millennials are positioned to have a big influence on our society. The majority of our AmeriCorps members fall into the Millennial category, so learning about this group is pretty relevant for this Gen Xer. In addition, this generation is very interesting when it comes to social capital related data.Read more

Closing the Civic Achievement and Social Capital Gaps

We are all too aware of the academic achievement gap, which has rightfully stirred much effort to close the gap and create equal educational opportunity for students of all backgrounds. New research indicates there is also a disconcerting gap on civic achievement and social capital that is of particular concern to us here at SCI. Read more

5 Ways You Can Build Social Capital in 2014

Networking at the Social Capitalist Luncheon
We thoughtWe thought we'd need to send one final message today to reach our year-end fundraising goal. Thanks to generous supporters like you, we are happy to report that we reached our target last week! If you didn't get a chance to donate yet, we can certainly still put your contribution to good use--click here to donate by midnight on December 31 to make a 2013 tax-deductible donation or mail a check to the address below with a 12/31/13 postmark. We thought we'd focus our final message of the year on 5 ways that you can build social capital in 2014, and to share a recap of what we accomplished with your help in 2013. 
We thought we'd need to post one final message today to reach our year-end fundraising goal. Thanks to generous supporters like you, we are happy to report that we reached our target last week!
Read more

Top 9 Social Capital Blog Posts of 2013

The approaching new year is a nice time to pause and reflect about the past year. We try to use our blog to highlight important developments related to the broader concept of social capital and to share best practices that emerge from our work in local communities. With that in mind, we offer some of the best and hopefully most helpful blog posts we shared over the course of 2013. Stay tuned for a post on some of our programmatic highlights of the year. Though "top 10 lists" are popular, we thought we'd keep our list to nine, and ask: "What would you add for a 10th post that you saw this year having to do with a social capital?"

Building Social Capital for Youth Success and Healthy Communities Provides background on the strategic plan focus we adopted earlier in 2013. In addition to targeting our social capital building to address two key issues, the plan has an ambitious growth target to serve 30 New England communities.Read more

Building Social Capital for Youth Success and Healthy Communities

Healthy Chelsea teens enjoying a nutritious lunch

Earlier this year, the SCI Board adopted a new strategic plan for the organization, certainly one of our most important developments in 2013. The new plan has been referenced in several places here on the site, including the updated summary of our programs and services. But I realized we hadn't blogged about some of our thinking behind the direction of our new plan, so wanted to do so here. Before getting into that, let me say a big word of thanks for Eric Curtis, who did a great job facilitating our strategic plan development!Read more

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