Tulane VISTA Blog

Fighting Poverty with Passion

Field Report: Getting 2014 Started at the Louisiana Center for Children’s Rights


Me, Sarah Edwards

The longer I work, the more I find how important organization is to planning for and meeting deadlines. It seems like common sense, but when I’m busy with projects, it’s easy to shelve “time for getting organized” – after all, it’s not a priority when juggling grant applications, the newsletter, etc.

But I’m learning it probably should be!

Every month, I draw up a new calendar on my dry erase board that hangs next to my desk. It’s huge, about 18 x 24, and I use it to track development and communication due dates—grant reports and applications, newsletter drafts, foundation prospect research, and so on. It’s a useful tool, and because of its size and proximity to my desk, it’s nearly impossible to forget a deadline!

What I’ve found, however, is that by focusing on one month alone, I lose a sense of what’s approaching. Are there projects due February 1? February 7? If they’re not on my giant dry-erase radar, I may not be prepared. So far, I haven’t missed any major deadlines. But to ensure that it doesn’t happen, my director and I drafted a development calendar for 2014. It’s overwhelming to look at, but at the same time comforting to know I can start to organize my time weeks in advance.


My great big calendar, to the right (as if you’d miss it)

Aside of planning dates, we are also hashing out a new strategy for donor cultivation. It’s exciting to be in the talks about how to improve and build upon our relationships with past donors – I get to use all the knowledge gained from VISTA orientation, my VISTA campus course on resource development, and our professional development at Tulane. Transforming notes on paper into action is extremely gratifying, and I look forward to being apart of the process as it unfolds in the next few months.



This entry was posted on January 29, 2014 by in Louisiana Center for Children's Rights.


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