Rapid assess[1]. of uiatf the way forward (part 2)

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THE WAY FORWARD:
A FRAMEWORK FOR FUTURE ACTION

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Rapid assess[1]. of uiatf the way forward (part 2)

  1. 1. THE WAY FORWARD: A FRAMEWORK FOR FUTURE ACTION PREPARED BY: Michael Bopp, PHD AND Phil Lane, Jr., MPA, MED WWW.FWII.NET July 18 – August 26, 2005
  2. 2. Adopted Unanimously by The United Indians of All Tribes Foundation Board of Directors October 31, 2005
  3. 3. The Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center The Spiritual Foundation Then I was standing on a highest mountain of them all, and round about beneath me was the whole hoop of the world. And while I stood there I saw more than I can tell and I understood more than I saw; for I was seeing in a sacred manner the shapes of all things in the spirit, and the shape of all shapes as they must live together like one being. And I saw that the sacred hoop that made one circle, wide as daylight and as starlight, and in the center grew one mighty flowering tree to shelter all the children of one mother and one father. And I saw that it was holy.Then as I stood there, two men were coming from the east, head first like arrows flying, and between them rose the Daybreak Star. They came and gave an herb to me and said: “With this on earth you shall undertake anything and do it.” It was the Daybreak Star herb, the herb of understanding, and they told me to drop it on the earth. I saw it falling far, and when it struck the earth it rooted and grew and flowered, four blossoms on one stem, a black, a white, a red, and a yellow; and the rays from these streamed upward to the heavens so that all creatures saw it and in no place was there darkness. Black Elk
  4. 4. June 29, 2005 Staff Members United Indians of All Tribes Foundation Box 99100 Seattle, WA 98139 Dear Staff Member, On behalf of the United Indians of All Tribes Foundation (UIATF) Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce that Phil Lane, Jr. and Four Directions International have been contracted to serve as UIATF’s Transformation Coordinator from July 11th, 2005 – Feb 28, 2006. The Board’s Executive Committee, after careful and thoughtful consideration of its current needs, dreams and expectation, felt that Mr. Lane could address each of these important areas during the transition and the search for a permanent Chief Executive Officer. During this transition and transformation process, Judy Guthrie will serve as Phil’s Executive Assistant. Background information on Phil’s perspectives and past work are attached. Phil’s lifelong, dedicated work in service to Indigenous peoples and the Human family speaks for itself. This includes Phil’s work as Planning Director, Education Division Director and Assistant Director of United Indians from 1973 – 1980. 1. Phil and Four Directions International will provide services and technical assistance focused on: a. Developing a vision and plan for the ongoing development of UIATF. b. Assessing the current state of the organization and its capacity to carry out the new vision and plan. c. Planning, designing and implementing interventions focused on building UIATF’s overall capacity to achieve its goals and objectives toward an organization with a unified community, board and staff, a strong enduring infrastructure and smoothly operating financial systems. 2. During this transition and transformation process, Phil will utilize the Four World’s Model for Human and Community Development as an integrative scheme of thought - a holistic framework for participatory development. This model includes Principles for Consultation and Talking Circles, Guiding Principles for Building a Sustainable and Harmonious World and Developing Service and Wisdom in the Workplace. 3. In his role as Transformation Coordinator, Phil is empowered and authorized by the UIATF Board to: a. Call, convene and conduct mandatory meetings of all UIATF staff and agents to develop, recommend and implement the approved transformation work plan. b. Conduct community forums and trainings to help build understanding of and broad community support for the transformation work plan. c. Recommend restructuring or realignment of program, staff, volunteer and committee duties and responsibilities to enable support for and commitment to the transformation planning process. d. Recommend allocation of financial and capital resources through the UIATF budgeting process so as to ensure that appropriate Foundation resources are focused on successful implementation of the transformation work plan.
  5. 5. 4. Phil’s work will be carried out under the direct supervision and authority of the UIATF Board of Directors via the UIATF Executive Committee. The Chair of the Board or his designate will serve as the official liaison of the Board to Four Directions. Beginning immediately, the UIATF Board of Directors looks forward to the full and unreserved support and cooperation of the UIATF staff in supporting Phil and Four Direction’s mandate. This includes providing any human resource, program, financial and other related information requested for undertaking a comprehensive and detailed review of all UIATF operations. Your respectful and full assistance, participation, cooperation, patience and understanding during this stage of transition and transformation at UIATF are greatly appreciated. Sincerely, Ed Claplanhoo, Chair United Indians of All Tribes Foundation Board of Directors
  6. 6. The Way Forward: A Framework For Action What follows are recommendations for what can be done (beginning with the next six months) to transform United Indians of All Tribes Foundation from the present crisis circumstances to one in which the organization is well on the road to full recovery, and real growth and development is underway. Please note that each of the lines of action briefly described below represents a significant investment in time, energy and creativity. Every one of them is transformative in nature, and will bring change, both within and around the Foundation. Each line of action will require its own work plan and its own champions. While all of these lines of action are important, it is the synergy between them that will contribute the most in propelling the Foundation towards its true potential. 1. Community Consultation and Revisioning Consultations will be held with the Native American communities of Seattle and surrounding area. These consultations will utilize different formats and approaches depending on the needs of the group that is being consulted, and will include a consultation with elders, a broad based community situation analysis (the community story framework) and focus group discussions with sub-groups within the Native American community such as parents of Head Start children, youth, groups interested in promoting Indigenous arts and culture, and entrepreneurs (to cite a few examples). It is important to understand that consultations will be broad based, will address a wide variety of interest groups, and will aim to involve as many parts of the Native American community as can be engaged in all parts of the city of Seattle and surrounding area as well as with communities that are within an easy driving range of Seattle. Essentially, the Foundation needs to reach out to the Native American community, and to listen to them very carefully. The purpose of these consultations is to re-establish a living connection between the Foundation and the community it was created to serve. The outcome of this consultation process will be:
  7. 7. a. A much deepened understanding of the nature and the roots of the current relationship between the community and the Foundation; b. A community-generated analysis of current Native American community needs and aspirations; and c. A renewed vision and mission for the Foundation that is rooted in the community it was established to serve. 2. Development of a Ten-Year Program Plan Based on continuing community consultations, a ten-year framework for action will be developed suitable for guiding the Foundation’s program development work. This plan, (which will need to be finalized and approved by the Board of Directors) will provide a guiding framework for program and facilities development that is truly connected to the needs and aspirations of the Native American community (and the other communities that it serves), and will as well describe a development path for the Foundation’s institutional stability and sustainability. From our perspective, this means revitalizing current programs, facilities and land to their full potential before pursuing the People’s Lodge buildings. As quite a number of people commented, “If we can’t maintain what we have, how can we be expected to manage the planning, development and maintenance of the People’s Lodge complex?” 3. Internal programs and Staffing Review A comprehensive review of all the Foundation’s programming and personnel will be conducted, leading to more cost effective and collaborative work teams and the generation of new program opportunities for the Foundation. This will involve individual staff performance reviews, the evaluation of the effectiveness and relevancy of programs and services in light of current community realities and needs and best known professional practices, and (where appropriate) a re-organization of work teams to generate maximum collaboration and synergy between individual staff assignments and program initiatives, as well as to encourage important linkages to be made between types of programs (such as youth and elders, personal growth and
  8. 8. healing and community economic development, etc.). From this work, a long-term staff development plan will be produced. 4. Staff Development All staff will be engaged in a formal, mandatory program of personal growth, healing, reconciliation and learning for improved performance related to the core vision, mission and program development requirements of the Foundation. This will include four inter-related four day training modules related to: (1) personal growth and healing; (2) building healthy relationships and organizations; (3) community development; (4) and developing relevant and effective programs. These four modules will be linked to new program development, teamwork plans and individual staff assignments, thus strategically bringing together staff development and the development of the whole Foundation. These courses will be academically accredited for those staff members who are pursuing Higher Education. 5. Personnel Policy Review and Selected New Policy Development A review of the Foundation’s personnel policies will be conducted, with particular attention to the development of an employee code of ethics and to the current hiring and firing procedures. Discussion and written input in this area has already been initiated with staff who are members of the newly formed Leadership Team. The policy area being focused on is backbiting and gossiping. 6. Financial Recovery The development of a financial recovery plan will be completed (in collaboration with the Executive Council of the Board of Directors), and a thorough review of the Foundation’s management system will be conducted to ensure complete transparency and accountability, as well as practical utility for day-to-day management and decision-making both at the program and Foundation level. This will mean, for example, that program managers will now have access to their own program budgets and will also have responsibility for managing those budgets as well as financial and program reports to funders. Administration will be there for technical support where needed, but the ultimate goal in this area is staff and program self-sufficiency. It will
  9. 9. also mean that the Board of Directors will be able to receive monthly reports on the financial status of each program and of the entire Foundation, check-run reports and any other specific financial information that is required in order to maintain complete transparency and accountability. Financial Considerations a. The Yale Building, Option 1 The Yale Building is (by itself) now worth at least $2 million, and United Indians was recently offered somewhere in the neighborhood of $4 million for the building and related land. This related land is owned free and clear by the Foundation. It is situated in a district that is undergoing rapid urban renewal and so its value is considerably greater than a comparable building in another area of the city. One possibility is to sell the Yale Building and move programs now housed there to a less expensive neighborhood. We estimate that this could free up between 800,000 and 1 million dollars. b. The Yale Building, Option 2 Another consideration is to borrow against the related property next to the Yale Building that is owned free and clear by United Indians with the reasonable anticipation that property values are likely to go up considerably (some say double) in that neighborhood in the next five years. c. The Yale Building, Option 3 Another option that was recently suggested to the Foundation was the possibility of an investor who would work with United Indians to replace the Yale Building with a four story office building and underground parking that would provide enough space for all of the Foundation’s programming on one floor and three other floors which would provide rental revenue to the Foundation (and of course to the investor). Of course, there are also other financial approaches to this possibility that would allow United Indians to initiate this development without needing an outside investor.
  10. 10. We are not recommending that any of these steps be taken just yet, only that they be considered and further investigated as we implement other measures. If such steps are taken, careful consideration will be needed regarding honoring the Foundation’s program obligations. 7. Preparation of a Development Plan A short and medium term development plan will be prepared for the Foundation (in collaboration with the Executive Council of the Board of Directors) and implementation will begin immediately. This plan will describe a strategy for a major fund raising campaign and a comprehensive plan for the Foundation’s growth and development for at least ten years into the future. 8. Renewing the Foundation’s Support Network A systematic mapping of and reconnection with the extensive support network for the Foundation that existed in the past will be undertaken. As well, an extensive effort will be made to make new friends and allies through personal connections and a systematic public relations campaign. 9. Re-indiginization A thoughtful and respectful (to all people) process of re-indiginizing the programs of United Indians will be initiated, beginning with the Head Start and Youth programs. This will involve intensive staff development to prepare existing and new Native American staff for professional advancement with an aim to significantly increase the number of Native American managers and directors throughout the Foundation within the next two to three years. It will also involve systematic investigation of all the Foundation’s programs in order to build into them a solid foundation of Indigenous cultural values, knowledge and wisdom. This, we believe, is certainly important for the Spanish-speaking children in Head Start programs (most of whom have some Indigenous background). Therefore, some exposure to all the Indigenous cultures of the Americas is very important for our children. 10. Board Development
  11. 11. Support will be provided to the Board of Directors to conduct a thorough self- assessment and to develop a Board development strategy that needs to include financial resources for the Board to do its work (probably coming out of the Foundation’s administrative costs budget). Final Remarks We are confident that the analysis of the challenges facing the United Indians of All Tribes Foundation presented in this document paints an accurate picture of the current situation. At the same time, what we did was a Rapid Participatory Assessment. Although we have a high level of confidence in the general shape of the analysis, we are also certain that more detail will come out as we engage staff and the Native American community in the recovery and development process to follow and we will, of course, adjust our strategy for renewal accordingly. (This is already occurring with the Transformation Coordinator spending six intense weeks at United Indians). We are also confident that measures we are recommending, if implemented consistently over time, will contribute to a major improvement in the Foundation’s circumstances and prospects for the future. The focus of this proposed intervention is the development of a solid infrastructure, impeccable financial systems and a united vision. It is now clear to us however, that the remedial work undertaken by Phil Lane, Jr., and Four Worlds will not be completed by March 1, 2006. We estimate that an intensive process of development lasting approximately 24 months will be required. Nevertheless, we are confident that by March 1, 2006, a new and much more hopeful and positive pattern of growth will be underway. SUMMARY OF KEY ISSUES AND CHALLENGES The diagram below summarizes the issues and challenges we believe need to be addressed in order to transform United Indians from a culture of crisis and survival to one of transformation, growth and success.
  12. 12. Reversing the cycle of deficit spending, cutbacks, layoffs and reduced capacity and disintegrating assets Loss of Vision The Leadership Vacuum Re-connection to the Toxic and Dysfunctional Human Relations Native American Community United Indians Key Issues and Challenges for Transformation and Growth Re-invigorating the Reconnection to Key Board of Directors Support Networks Establishing Internal Regaining the Collaboration and a Confidence of Wholistic Systems funders Approach Re-indiginizing United Indians
  13. 13. SUMMARY: LINES OF ACTION FOR ORGANIZATIONAL TRANSFORMATION This diagram summarizes the (proposed) steps to be taken in order to transform United Indians from the present crisis, to one in which the organization is well on the road to full recovery, and real growth and development is underway. Community Consultation and Revisioning Internal Program and Staffing Board Development Review Re-indiginization Staff Development Initiative Transformational Actions to be Renewing the Taken Personnel Policy Review Foundation’s and New Policy Support Network Development Financial Recovery Plan Preparation of a including Foundation Development Plan community economic Development of a Ten Development year Plan (i.e. Framework for Action)

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