Capacity building can be defined as an investment in the effectiveness and future sustainability of a non-profit organization. Non-profit organizations are founded on purposes other than making a profit usually driven by their mission and vision statement. Mission statements usually presents the purpose of an organization stating What it does, Who it does it for, and How it will do so. Vision statements state what an organization is focused on achieving in five, ten, or more years.
A non-profit’s success is measured based upon the effectiveness of its mission statement over time. All non-profit’s should have a positive impact on people and communities over time. Some well-known non-profit organizations are the NFL, Red Cross, Smithsonian Institute, and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. Non-profit’s are known for things such as sheltering, feeding, healing, and educating people through community outreach and development.
Capacity building helps people, governments, and organizations fulfill their mission statement while improving aspects that allow them to attain their desired results. Non-profit organizations use various strategies and activities to achieve their mission and become sustainable overtime. Advancement of communication strategies, technology, and collaborative planning are a few of many ways to build capacity within an organization.
Non-profits should conduct an organizational self-assessment to learn which key capacity areas require improvement. Capacity building is needed for the effectiveness, advancement, and organizational maturity of a non-profit organization.