Today is always the most complicated moment, because it is what we have to manage. But just by looking at this today, we can identify large blocks of work that entities should put on the table to improve and have a future.
To talk about the future is to talk about uncertainty and if one thing is certain in these times, it is that uncertainty is precisely what we will have in the future.
How can we know what the future of the entities will be? Hard to say, but we can look at the past and the present and try to see and predict what the future will be like.
Looking back we can say that the associative movement has been part of society for a long time (years and centuries, even!) and there are many fields in which it works: sport, neighbors, culture, environment, groups such as women, children, the elderly... And just as organizations have been dissolved, they have also been created. It is, therefore, a living movement that has adapted to the times. The very essence of associationism makes it easy for people (sensitive, maverick, restless, fighting, utopian) to come together and work for a common cause.
Taking a look at the organizations today, we are sure to find common elements between various areas, towns and cities, and organizations of all sizes. Difficulty in reaching new audiences , lack of internal participation , few resources and a lot of work to do, complexity of management and management issues, bureaucratization of the relationship with public administrations, as well as ignorance of the multiple obligations that associations have in legislative matter Almost nothing...
We tend to think that the moment we live in is the most difficult of all, but I'm sure that in the future we will continue to think the same. Today is always the most complicated moment, because it is what we have to manage . But just by looking at this today, we can identify large blocks of work that entities should put on the table to improve and have a future.
Visibility . What would happen to cities and towns without the associative movement? What about so many needs that are being covered by the third sector? Therefore, working for the external visibility of the entities should be as essential as the activity itself. We cannot change the environment or work for the missions that are specific to each entity if these do not have a presence in society. Associations are a benchmark and must have the recognition they deserve. But he will not come alone. It must be valued, also, from the entities themselves.
people _ Participation is not learned by osmosis. It is necessary to accompany the people within the entities to be part of the day-to-day activities of the associations. Not only as recipients of services or users of the activities, but also as an active part of it. But what we all want, it doesn't happen alone. Functions, actions must be defined and, above all, accompany it. Participation is possible, but it is necessary to find the fit for each person. Also put people back in the center. Associations are groups of people with a joint mission, not an individual goal or a space to be seen.
Sustainability . In a broad sense. Entities need to be financially sustainable. Even if they are few, the bills don't pay themselves. Therefore, thinking and working for future income will be a necessary issue. A balance must be found between own resources (generated by the entity itself) and external resources (from other collaborators or from public administrations). Environmental sustainability will also have to be part of the associations' day-to-day: what is being consumed? What is the environmental impact? How can it be minimized? Being non-profit does not mean being responsible in all fields. But it is necessary to have an open mind to improve in all possible areas, not only those related to the mission.
In general, when we hear the word challenge we are scared of the concept. We are not comfortable in uncertainty. But the challenges are just that: aspects that we have to know, face and work on. He who has a why, will find all the hows. We do not understand present and future challenges as obstacles to overcome , but as opportunities to continue building and working to make a better world . For everyone, and from all areas.
To conclude, if I had to summarize the main challenge for the future of the entities, I would say that it is not only necessary to have a good cause. It is more than good to move our hearts. But it is necessary to put direction and management. You have to worry about those things that no one wants to do: provide strategy, lead the action plan, keep accounts, feed networks, take care of relationships... so that visibility , people and sustainability are part of the entities. Let the heart guide the organizations, but let the head give it direction and order.