Q & A with Connector Program Coordinators

Connector Program Benefits for Staff

The National Connector Program staff assists the coordinators of the Connector Programs across the country in professional development, training, and resource development so they can run the program at the highest level. This means that the hosting organization also benefits from their staff members receiving extra training and opportunities for growth. Coordinators are also able to engage with each other, learning from challenges and successes, and building new ideas and activities into their programming. This allows for engaging and bigger activities without as much work because the groundwork has already been laid by previous coordinators.

Still hesitating about starting your own Connector Program? Let’s hear from some staff across the country about their thoughts on the program and it’s benefits to them!

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Alida Campbell

Interview by Alida Campbell.

Alida manages the National Connector Program and continues to be inspired by the stories of connection and growth that participants share across the country.
Alida

Alida:

What have you gained professionally from being a part of the National Connector Program?

Amal

Amal:

It also allows me to connect with other organizations nationwide and learn from their experiences and success stories so that I can embed them in my practices to better help my clients.

Erica

Erica:

We have access to resources and ideas from other communities which helps with our workload since we don’t have to continually create everything from scratch.

Matthew

Matthew:

Our events and activities are better organized and run because we can always find out exactly what worked and didn’t work in other communities before planning one ourselves. You can also get ideas from other communities to replicate in your own. There is so much collaboration in helping one another, so it gives us an opportunity to have a greater reach with our programming.

Elmira

Elmira:

Everyone is so skilled! Each time we get together I learn so much and broaden my horizons. It’s a great opportunity for me to understand other communities and there have been so many helpful workshops that have been beneficial to my learning and growth in the position.

Mazeena

Mazeena:

I learn so much from everyone. I learn everyone’s different ways of doing things, their challenges, difficulties and successes and how they run programs and events.

Dan

Dan:

It allows for good problem solving and innovative approaches because of the various voices at the table. Everything is so well thought out because everyone brings their own knowledge and experience to the table. All of this knowledge brings an incredible amount to ACCES because we can build these perspectives into our programs.

Alida

Alida:

How would you describe the sense of community with your other Connector coordinator colleagues?

Dave

Dave:

It's a valuable forum where we can exchange information and share best practices. That cooperation, collaboration, and camaraderie strengthens our work and allows us to serve our clients and communities more effectively.

Miranda

Miranda:

Everyone is incredibly welcoming and really want to help each other whenever they can. It’s like an extended support network outside of your organization to help you be as successful as you can be. I’ve seen collaboration before in similar instances, but the National Connector Program really is just that – a community!

Myrna

Myrna:

It’s not having to recreate the wheel, hearing positive stories and getting inspired. It’s motivational.

Nathan

Nathan:

It’s rewarding because you get to work with people of similar passions, but different skillsets and strengths. You can draw on everyone’s enthusiasm and learn so much from others.

Fahim

Fahim:

What I most like from the community is that the group is so enriched with diversity and inclusion and the meetings are always so welcoming and friendly.

Katie

Katie:

As a new coordinator the community is pivotal to my success in supporting Connectees and Connectors. The community gives me support and helps me learn about the program and position quickly and from a variety of different perspectives.

Kyle

Kyle:

We are all aligned. It’s so nice to be part of a community who share the same ideals and same goals.

Alida

Alida:

Thank you all for sharing your stories of what the National Connector Program means to you. You are all doing such important work and it’s vital that you gain something from the program too!
If you are #ReadyToStart engaging your community and supporting your staff, contact the National Connector Program to get started today!