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I started a nonprofit to provide transitional housing and life skill education for the single mothers in the redline neighborhoods. I am working on my first project to host a money management workshop. The location I am interested in is a low housing community with 100% single mothers residence and about 25% are working outside of the home. I want to know what would be the best way to start a money management workshop and would asking my bank to sponsor the event be a great idea? The main question is how should I propose using the community center as the place to hold the event?

          Thank you for writing to us at the Community Tool Box. And congratulations on starting a nonprofit! We hope it turns out to be a great asset to your community, and a great experience for you personally.
          You ask a number of good questions, and we’ll comment on each one briefly:
        *   We don’t think there is one single best way to start a workshop. It depends on who your audience is, and what they want to hear. But it’s good to design your workshop around your audience’s needs, both in terms of format (e.g., lecture vs. discussion) and content. 
           Some other points to consider:   You’d want to think carefully about who should be teaching the workshop. You’d want to be clear on the workshop schedule – that is, the order of events.  And you’d also want to pay close attention to publicizing the workshop, so that the people who you want to be there will in fact show up.       
       *  Would asking your bank to sponsor the workshop be a good idea?  Maybe: It depends on what you would want the sponsor to do -- for example, donate money to the housing community, or donate services, or something else.  You probably want a sponsor to do something besides lending their name. If your bank can potentially provide what you need through their sponsorship, then most likely their sponsorship would in fact be a good idea.  
        *  How do you propose the community center as the location?   First, is that the location you want, as vs. others?  If so, then you would want to  check out the existing policies the center has for its use.  These will of course  vary from place to place.   If your event fits with those policies, excellent.    In any case, it’s likely to help to meet or talk with the community center staff, to go over workshop details and to begin developing a good relationship with them, if you don’t have one already.
           A few more questions:  Will there be some kind of follow-up to this workshop, so that you can learn the extent to which what was taught was put into practice? Do you plan on holding several other money management classes, or other life skills sessions?   And what other workshops might you want to hold in the future?   
          All of these are natural questions, which frequently arise for new programs such as yours.  They are definitely solvable questions, but in answering them you will definitely benefit from some thoughtful planning in advance, to help you make the best decisions for your situation.  In addition, it’s good to talk to others to get their opinion, and, even better, to seek out people in other community settings who have done similar programs themselves, so that you can learn from their experience.
          We hope some of these thoughts may be helpful to you.  Congratulations once again: We send all best wishes for success.  

Question Date: Wed, 01/11/2023