Key Questions to Consider

  • How will we institutionalize what works?
  • How will we assure that resources will be available long enough to achieve the objectives?

Core Activities

  • Institutionalize effective programs and other interventions.
  • Obtain needed financial resources to sustain the efforts.

Reflection Prompt: What is important to sustain and maintain over time? As an individual and as a group, think creatively not only about what has worked already, but what could work in the future.

Social Justice Prompt: How are you incorporating the values of social justice and cultural competency into your organization or group as you plan for the future? What can be done to ensure continued (or increased) participation of marginalized people in your efforts? How can you ensure that social justice is institutionalized into your work and efforts?


Engagement Example

Social innovation/enterprise: Corporations and other large, powerful organizations can play an important role in sustaining change. In one case, Unilever has aligned their business practices with three of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals:  Good Health and Well-being, Clean Water and Sanitation, and Partnerships for the Goals (Goals 3, 6, and 17 respectively). The company’s approach to addressing social challenges by offering quality and affordable products has helped 1 billion people improve health and well-being. According to Unilever, addressing crises of health and hygiene is not only the ethical thing to do, but it is good for business as well.

Fundraising, giving and philanthropy: Community members often financially support projects whose missions they endorse. This can be a huge factor in sustaining the work; most of National Public Radio‘s revenue comes from dues and feed of their Member stations, corporate sponsors, grants, and individual contributions paid by users of their Satellite System.

Community and economic development: Community development can take shape when the members of a community are able to share their experiences and work together to solve problems, serving as messengers to outside parties.  The Dream Corps, an initiative for promoting the values of diversity in America, established a Climate Storytellers Academy to train a diverse cohort of individuals to become effective messengers on climate change. In training those of diverse backgrounds, the Dream Corps helped people to channel fears and worries about the climate crisis into concrete personal stories, preparing those participants to shift the climate narrative in their communities and even on a national scale.


Resources to Help You Sustain the Effort

From KU’s Community Tool Box


Troubleshooting Guide for Solving Common Problems


Additional Resources



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