Exploring New Ideas Together
Learning Cohorts are a Nonprofit Network initiative to help Linn County nonprofits explore and implement best practices and build connections. Occasionally, Learning Cohorts take place alongside or in lieu of Peer Groups, providing opportunities for local nonprofit professionals to learn from experts and one another.
Current Learning Cohorts
Thrive Cohort (2023)
Thrive offers relationship building, networking, and learning for Black, Brown, and Biracial nonprofit professionals to foster career development within the sector. This initiative is part of the Community Foundation’s efforts to advance racial equity by helping nonprofit organizations close the racial leadership gap and diversify nonprofit staff and managerial teams. This opportunity is provided through support from the Alliant Energy Foundation. Learn more here.
LAP-AID Inclusion Team & Cohort (2023)
The LAP-AID Inclusion Team & Cohort aims to convene community organizers from traditionally excluded communities through a cohort model to create an environment of collective learning and connection to community and resources. Project support is being provided by the Philanthropic Preparedness, Resiliency, and Emergency Partnership (PPREP), a project of The Funders Network. Learn more here.
Learning Cohort: Engaging in the DEI Journey (Fall 2023 & Spring 2024)
The Nonprofit Network continues to invest in DEI learning through a partnership with Top RANK, a Cedar Rapids-based diversity facilitation, consulting, and talent acquisition firm. The three-part series is designed to offer nonprofit leaders tools and concepts to help guide implementation of equitable practices and policies in Linn County nonprofits, with a focus on racial equity. This Learning Cohort will be held in lieu of Managers Peer Group on the second Wednesday of the month for the Fall and Spring sessions over the next year. All meetings will be held at the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation, 324 3rd Street SE, Cedar Rapids, in the first floor meeting room. Registration is required to participate and space is limited (up to two representatives per organization, please). The Community Foundation is covering the cost of the training and lunch. Learn more here.
Past Learning Cohorts
Learning Cohort: Engaging in the DEI Journey
In 2022, the Nonprofit Network brought this DEI learning opportunity to nonprofit Executive Directors and CEO’s through a partnership with Top RANK, a Cedar Rapids-based diversity facilitation, consulting, and talent acquisition firm. The three-part series was designed to offer nonprofit leaders tools and concepts to help guide implementation of equitable practices and policies in Linn County nonprofits, with a focus on racial equity. This Learning Opportunity was provided through support from the Iowa Council of Foundations.
Thrive Cohort (2021-22)
In 2020 as our community dealt with the pandemic, social unrest, and the derecho, a number of grassroots groups were working to meet needs and provide opportunities. The Community Foundation had been actively discussing new ways to support emerging nonprofit organizations. In January 2021 a partnership with emerging Black and Brown leaders began through a new cohort called Thrive. The Cohort sought to develop relationships, create and expand nonprofit connections, and provide learning, as part of advancing the Community Foundation’s work in racial equity in our community.
Five Thrive cohort members, along with Foundation staff, participated in group learning activities over two years to strengthen nonprofit leadership skills and explore organizational best practices. In addition to monthly meetings and individual conversations, each organization also received a $2,500 grant quarterly. Learn more here.