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POV: Unleashing the Power of Giving—Why Attend the UNA Annual Conference and Utah Film Center’s Screening of Uncharitable

By Jill Bennett

unleashing the power of givingI think we might have missed the boat on naming this year’s UNA Annual Conference: Better Together. As I look at everything the conference offers, I can’t help but wonder if Better than Ever would more closely capture the essence of this in-person event. Here’s why…

This year, you can prime your conference experience by joining UNA and Utah Film Center for a FREE screening and panel discussion of the unique and inspiring documentary, Uncharitable, the most important film ever about the systemic challenges confronting nonprofits. Invite your staff and bring your board to the screening to be part of a revolution that will change how people think about nonprofits. The screening is free—regardless of whether you are attending the conference—and features a panel discussion led by this year’s Conference Keynote and Uncharitable Executive Producer, Lindsay Hadley, as well as one of the film’s generous sponsors, Keri Hale.

As our team, led by Alison Anderson, crafted each component of the conference, one idea emerged and gave shape to our conference content—including what I now consider to be a less-than-truly-descriptive title. (JK about that, I love the conference name. Besides, “Better than Ever” comes too close to bragging, something that we, a team of women, are loath to do. Alas, we need to be better about self-promotion. Hang tight—you’ll see it in this post.)

So back to the foundational idea that shaped the conference: that broad systemic change must happen for nonprofits to create a better world, and that we must work together to explore new ways of building nonprofit capacity. Lindsay’s conference keynote address, A Rising Tide Lifts all Boats: Unleashing Nonprofit Potential through the Convener Model, provides exciting proof that “Better Together” is more than just wishful thinking. This keynote, in one fell swoop, launches our best conference yet.

A wide-ranging selection of breakout sessions—chosen by a dedicated committee of nonprofit professionals with diverse experience—will give you new ways to think about everything from collecting and measuring data to really involving everyone in fundraising. With its focus on innovative ideas and practical solutions, this year’s Conference Planning Committee has really outdone itself. (Really!)

We see nonprofit collaboration as a source of unlimited potential. This year, we have crafted sessions that allow you to start brainstorming and solution-planning with nonprofit professionals outside of your typical circle. (We call this friends-helping-friends.) Bringing people together who serve different—or similar—causes sparks creative ideas and opportunities to work together. Collaboration creates beautiful, practical, synergistic magical solutions. (I really mean this. If you want to hear more about why I know this is true, find me at the conference.)

This year’s sponsors and exhibitors bring expertise and dedication to helping you advance your mission. Maximize the impact of the conference by engaging with these partners who share your vision of a better world.

And best of all, we are in person this year! We can’t over-emphasize the power of being together. The serendipitous conversations as we wait for sessions to begin, stories traded over shared meals, and the friendly games of who-knows-who-from-way-back-when all contribute to this year’s Annual Conference theme: Better Together/Better than Ever. Don’t miss the boat! Join us!