Monday, February 18, 2013

Across Kansas, CCSR Responds | By Scott Wituk, PhD

WSU Center for Community Support and Research released its annual report at the end of last week. Here is a letter from Executive Director Scott Wituk which opens the report. View the whole report on our website (PDF).
Scott Wituk, PhD, Executive Director

Across Kansas, CCSR Responds.

In 2012, the Center for Community Support & Research assisted over 100 Kansas-based nonprofits, community coalitions and government agencies to better fulfill their missions. Our ongoing partnerships with these groups are guided by several important factors.

Experience. For nearly 30 years, CCSR has helped organizations of every shape and size handle virtually every situation imaginable. We tap into our collective experience whether we’re assisting a small group of committed Kansans looking to improve the health of their community or a large city government hoping to cultivate their leadership to better meet the needs of those it serves.

Excellence. We help organizations, individuals and groups become more effective and efficient. Our researchers have developed useful tracking mechanisms to help groups determine their progress on selected goals. For planning, we frequently use individual- and group-based assessments to identify strengths and challenges. Through this process, groups are able to strategically respond to an increasingly complex environment. 

Integrity. In order to help individuals, groups and organizations better fulfill their missions, it is critical that we understand them. CCSR staff approach each project with care and sensitivity. Our “design team” system helps us clearly define expectations and how our assistance can best meet their needs. Commitments made to, and by, the design team allow for the appropriate follow-up to determine the extent to which progress is being made.

Capacity Development. Over the years, we’ve made a lot of good friends in Kansas. One of the things that excites me most is seeing individuals, group and organizations grow stronger and better prepared to meet the needs of Kansas because of capacities we have helped them develop.

Partnering. Often Kansas communities and organizations face tough challenges that cannot be solved solely by one individual or organization. More often than not, it takes multiple organizations across community sectors to make progress. CCSR recognizes the need to develop strong partnerships that can help contribute to a collective impact.

I’m sure there are other factors that have contributed to CCSR’s responsiveness. I would be remiss to not mention a highly committed staff, volunteers, students and advisers who truly want to see Kansas become the best possible place to live. It is my pleasure to work with them and I look forward to working together in the future.

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