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September 2022

Working with nonprofit leaders, we continue to be impressed by their creativity in innovating to make their organizations more sustainable. Two great examples among our Capacity Partners clients are highlighted in this issue: A Farm Less Ordinary (AFLO) and Montgomery Coalition for Adult English Literacy (MCAEL). These organizations have created smaller fundraising events, not because they don't need more money. Rather, they recognize more intimate events can build sustainability in the longer term by giving donors meaningful experiences that provide insights into their missions in a more compelling way. Read more about how they accomplish this below.

Have you created or attended a different and interesting fundraiser? Tell us about it - let's stay connected.

Mary RobinsonCapacity Partners President & Founder
Michael Feinstein, Capacity Partners Vice President 

Crafting Intimate, Mission-Driven Events

Some organizations are consciously moving away from the classic big gala fundraising event, embracing smaller events to expand supporters’ understanding of their core mission. While organizations still raise funds, these events have a more important goal: building a deeper connection with current donors through experiences that are interactive, intimate, enlightening, and fun. The events also can introduce new donors to the organizations, expanding the circle of support. 

Capacity Partners’ client Montgomery Coalition for Adult English Literacy (MCAEL) in Rockville, MD, provides learning opportunities for multilingual adults for whom English is not their first language. MCAEL’s annual Adult Spelling Bee is a perfect vehicle to generate better understanding of the organization’s mission.  

A Farm Less Ordinary (AFLO) provides employment, training, and a welcoming community to people ages 15-62 with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD). AFLO’s Feast in the Field is a multi-course, farm-to-table dinner at one of AFLO’s locations. It provides a chance for supporters to meet the Growers (those employed by AFLO) and see the experience they are getting up close. 

Capacity Partners Consultant Laura Cohen Apelbaum says, “There is a feeling of community and family. It is personal and hands-on.” 

Read More

Six Lessons:

Moving from Galas to Intimate, Mission-Driven Events


Congratulations to Capacity Partners Consultant Siobhan Davenport. She has been selected for a SOAR Fellowship, the Aspen Institute Forum on Women and Girls’ signature leadership initiative. Those selected are "visionary leaders with bold ideas to address pressing issues affecting women and girls today." You can learn more about the fellowship here.


Capacity Partners is working with our clients
on these projects:



A Farm Less Ordinary:
Strategic Planning Facilitation


Adventure Theatre MTC:
Board Retreat, Strategic Planning 


Georgetown Business Improvement District: Series of Board Retreats 

JCC Association of North America:
Management Support

North Chevy Chase Connections:
Board Governance

King Farm Neighbors Village:
Strategic Planning

Bethesda Metro Area Village: 
Strategic Planning


JCC MetroWest NJ
Management Support

North Bethesda Village
Board Governance

Greater Stonegate Village
Board Governance

The National Theatre
Grant Writing

Little Falls Village 
Board Governance

Friendship Heights Neighbors Network
Board Governance

Washington Metro Oasis
Marketing and Fundraising Plans



Follow us to keep up with what we are up to:


Capacity Partners offers a full range of strategic and development services via consulting, interim staffing, facilitation, coaching, and on-site project management.

Strategic Plans
Implementation Plans
Business Plans
Organizational Assessments
Meeting Facilitation


Capital Campaigns
Feasibility Studies
Major Gifts and Wealth Screening
Grant Writing and Prospect Research
Comprehensive Development Planning

Board Training 
Governance Structure
Board Engagement Strategies
Board Assessments
Counsel for Board Chairs


Leadership Coaching
Operational Analysis
Executive Search 
Market Studies
Marketing/Communications Strategy
Nonprofit Management Assistance



Capacity Partners is a consulting firm based in Bethesda, MD, dedicated to strengthening the impact of nonprofits. We blend best practices and original thinking to guide nonprofits to achieve transformative results.

Mary Robinson
President & Founder
Michael Feinstein
Vice President

Laura Apelbaum
Jeanine Cogan

Louise Stoner Crawford
Siobhan Davenport
Kristen Engebretsen
Charlotte Garvey
Debra Liverpool

Steve Longley
Margo Reid
Joan Schaffer
Amy Selco
Daniel Wacker
Sara Watkins
Barbara Wille

Our commitment to DEI is inseparable from who we are and what we do. To that end, we incorporate DEI principles into our approach to strategic planning, fundraising, and board development to best meet the needs of our clients. We are committed to promoting racial equity and justice, and proactively advancing diversity and inclusion in our sector, with our clients, and within our firm.
Copyright © 2022 Capacity Partners, Inc., All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Capacity Partners, Inc.
4701 Sangamore Road, Suite S150
Bethesda, MD 20816

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