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Reimagine your Community Reimagine your Sacred Place

Partners for Sacred Places has developed a unique set of tools and resources that are reflective of our view of sacred places as vital community assets. Our consulting services can bring these tools, expertise, and resources to your congregation and your community. Click on any of the links below to find out more. 

 

Capital Campaigns and Feasibility Studies

Community Engagement and Asset Mapping

Discovery Studies

Economic Valuation Studies 

Shared-Space Planning

Adaptive Reuse

Capital Campaigns and Feasibility Studies

Every congregation is the center of a unique network of parishioners, neighbors, and friends. Partners for Sacred Places is uniquely positioned to help faith and lay leaders leverage these networks for success with customized, comprehensive, community-oriented capital campaigns and feasibility studies.

Feasibility Studies 

The foundation of a successful campaign, the feasibility study is an opportunity for the congregation to gauge the receptiveness of parishioners and the community to its campaign, to identify and recruit volunteers, campaign leadership and major donors, and to identify realistic fundraising goals and timelines. 

Development of Fundraising Case Statements 

Partners helps congregations develop a broad case for community support that emphasizes their economic and social impact, cultural importance, and vision for the future. 

Capital Campaigns

Partners provides comprehensive consulting services that address both the internal and external components of a campaign. Beginning with prospect research and continuing campaign evaluation, Partners provides congregations the advice and support they need to ensure their campaign’s success, including:

  • CASE STUDY ASSISTANCE
  • BUILDING A PYRAMID OF GIFTS
  • DONOR IDENTIFICATION
  • MATERIALS DESIGN
  • MEDIA STRATEGY
  • VOLUNTEER TRAINING
  • DONOR STRATEGIC APPROACH
  • CAMPAIGN EVALUATION

Community Engagement & Asset Mapping

Partners helps congregations identify new stakeholders and develop strategies to connect their assets with the gifts and talents of their members and neighbors—physical, individual, associational, institutional—and find new ways to connect with each other.

Discovery Studies

Discovery studies provide vitally important information to the congregation’s leadership about the perception of the church in the community. Though often overlooked, discovery processes serve as a vital foundation for creating a successful road map to the future. A discovery study typically includes interviews with 15-20 prospective key players in the community and congregation. Each confidential interview is conducted one-on-one with the consultant and last between 45 and 60 minutes. 

The current state of the congregation and its presence in the life of the community is analyzed, providing valuable feedback about how the community feels about the congregation and its building(s) and answers to the following questions: 

  • What is the role of this congregation and its historic building within the fabric of the town?
  • What strategic approaches can the congregation take to maximize its presence?

Economic Valuation Studies

In 2010, Partners for Sacred Places and the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy and Practice concluded a pilot study of the economic impact of houses of worship. We found that 12 Philadelphia congregations contribute $52 million in annual economic value to the city of Philadelphia, for an average of $4.3 million per congregation. By assessing over 50 different factors, we have pioneered a new quantitative approach to understanding how congregations impact local economies. Congregations must now be understood as critical economic catalysts, suggesting an important shift in community investment policy and practice. Our Economic Valuation Study services offer congregations individualized research, comprehensive interview reports, and numerical data gleaned from analyzing the large array of factors that contribute to your local economic impact, provided in a professionally designed document for your future use.

Shared-Space Planning 

Because of Partners’ strong relationship with the faith community and our expertise in community development and the arts, Partners has extensive experience and connections to networks of arts groups and social service organizations interested in sharing space. In facilitating shared-space agreements, our services include: 

  • Identification of potential tenants 
  • Guidance on best practices for sharing space 
  • Business and strategic planning 
  • Lease development and negotiation

Adaptive Reuse

Partners has strong expertise on how to reuse inactive religious properties, with extensive experience in developing and leading charrettes and seminars on how to redevelop such spaces. In situations of complete adaptive re-use, our services include:        

  • design charrette development and management: a kick-starter initiative that brings together community leaders, residents, and architects to think creatively about the site through the lens of civic engagement
  • community and political engagement
  • business and funding plan development

For more information about capital campaigns and feasibility study services, please contact Gianfranco Grande at ggrande@sacredplaces.org.

For all other consulting service inquiries, please contact Tuomi Forrest at tforrest@sacredplaces.org.