Social Services

Home of the Innocents, Louisville, KY

The Home of the Innocents offers hope for children, youth and families in crisis by providing care, shelter and support.  Unfortunately, demand for their services has continued to grow.  At a time when the Home was landlocked and overcrowded at its main facility and three other facilities across Louisville.  In order to meet both the immediate and future challenges, the Home desperately needed a new location.

That’s when The Covenant Group got involved.  Thanks to a strong capital campaign, the vision for a new facility has been realized.  Gordon S. Brown, President & CEO, stated it this way, “We called on Dr. Moisan’s company to help us plan and manage a successful campaign, and we believe their involvement was critical to our success.  We have already raised over $23 million and we will definitely exceed our $25 million goal … The more than 1,000 kids we serve every year will have a new home.  It is an exciting new beginning.”Read more

Sisters of St. Benedict, Our Lady of Grace Monastery, Beech Grove, IN

The Sisters of St. Benedict had just completed an audit conducted by the National Religious Retirement Organization (NRRO).  The original premise was to determine the funding needs to care for the growing number of retiring sisters.  However, the report also revealed an immediate need to renovate and reconfigure the healthcare space in the monastery to make it more elder friendly for our sisters.

In addition to the NRRO report, we knew that St. Paul Hermitage, home to 105 senior adults, needed facility improvements to meet the ever-changing needs of a rapidly growing elder population. The sisters knew that raising that kind of funding would require some external assistance so they called The Covenant Group.

To that end, a feasibility study was conducted and the results indicated support for a campaign goal of $6.9 million.  The sisters set the basic needs goal at $3 million to establish a charitable trust to ensure care for our Senior Sisters. A visionary needs goal of $3.9 million was set to provide funding for the renovations at the both the Monastery and the Hermitage.  Sister Mary Luke Jones, Director of Mission Advancement stated, “The feasibility study gave the sisters the courage to move forward with a capital campaign. We felt it gave us solid grounds to launch this major effort.”

The Covenant Group partnered with the sisters by training their Board and Steering Committee members in making face-to-face solicitations.  This training became crucial as the real work of the campaign got underway.  The sisters did not expect the campaign to be easy.  “We conducted our last campaign in 2003”, recalled Sister Mary Luke.  “My theme for that campaign was Lower and Slower…meaning the gifts came in lower than anticipated and took longer to realize.”

When asked if the results of this campaign have been surprising, Sister stated, “One major donor in particular has been quite a blessing.” However, she is quick to point out that every gift no matter the size is appreciated. She adds, “A campaign is a great time for us to make new friends.  People are supporting us at varying levels and helping us continue to do what we do. Every gift from $1 to $1 million is appreciated.”

Just over two years into the campaign, the sisters have less than $1 million left to raise. “We are at $5.9 million today” Sister Mary Luke reported. “We have been able to fund the Charitable Trust.  Also, we are working with the architects now and preparing to begin the renovations as soon as the campaign is complete.” When comparing the consulting styles of the firms she has worked with, she notes The Covenant Group’s “kinder and gentler approach.” She adds, “Joe and Len make sure we get the job done. They keep us organized and on task, they spur us on so things don’t get missed.” However, she is grateful that unlike some consultants with a more aggressive style they are “charming, helpful and forgiving.” She continued, “The Covenant Group is positive, easy to work with, and they genuinely want to see their clients be successful.  Of course I would recommend them to other nonprofits seeking counsel…in fact, I already have.”

Farm Credit Services, Louisville, KY

The Covenant Group’s agreement to facilitate training for Farm Credit Services began in 2001.  When the company was just launching the Leadership College.  This program was designed to offer the company’s exemplary performers the opportunity to hone their personal leadership skills and to reinforce the organization’s core values. They wanted to help employees find ways to internalize and live out the values in their everyday roles.

Marsha Thompson, Director of Leadership Development, commented, “We don’t want our company values just to be posted on the wall.  We want them to be lived out daily through our employees.” She credits Dr. Moisan’s training on ethics and leadership and his facilitation skills as helping them do just that.  “During Len’s session he helps employees discover their own core values and find ways to align them with the company’s values.” She continued, “He gets them thinking at a much deeper level by using activities geared toward introspection and self-evaluation.”  Thompson remarked that Dr. Moisan’s passion for the subject matter is evident and it comes across through his presentation style.  “He helps employees gain a better understanding of the benefits of ethical decision-making.”

At the end of every session of the Leadership College, Thompson asks participants to fill out evaluation forms.  She suggested letting some of the attendees speak to the value of the sessions through their feedback:  “My favorite session”, “I liked the stories and examples”, “Valuable and interesting discussion”,  “A good session that everyone can learn from and apply to their everyday lives.”, “Len has a solid platform for his beliefs on leadership.”. These and others like them capture the essence of the value of the training as well as the passion and experience of the presenter.

When asked how the training has improved the organization, Thompson states that it is difficult to report the results numerically.  However, she is quick to point out that employees have a greater awareness of a consistent standard with which to align their behavior.  They also take more responsibility for ways their own ethical actions impact the bottom line.

Thompson characterizes Dr. Moisan as “always open to feedback”.  “He is flexible, and willing to adjust his presentation to best meet the changing needs of our organization.  It is not a canned presentation, but always evolving to remain fresh and relevant.” Thompson estimates that over the 13 years of the program’s existence, Dr. Moisan has trained well over 300 people. She would highly recommend him as a presenter to other organizations seeking leadership or ethics training.  “His style is to challenge employees to think about how their actions impact every aspect of their lives… work and beyond.  That makes for better informed and more engaged employees that strengthen the organization overall.”

Wellspring, Louisville, KY

Wellspring is Kentucky’s leading provider of housing coupled with services to individuals struggling with psychiatric illness. Nearly 45,500 adults in the Louisville area suffer from some type of severe mental illness. Since 1982, Wellspring has been providing supportive housing coupled with psychiatric rehabilitative services for people living with mental illness. In order to better serve adults experiencing psychiatric crisis, Wellspring developed a plan to build a new crisis stabilization unit, realizing that they would need to raise the funding to do so. With an eye towards the future, Wellspring leaders also determined that they needed to raise sufficient funding to renovate and refurbish existing structures and fund their ongoing maintenance, develop seed funding for new opportunities, and establish a centralized administrative center. To accomplish these ambitious goals they sought help from The Covenant Group.

Nancy Doctor, Director of Development recalls, “We needed a “reality check,” a true assessment of our potential to raise the needed funds. If we had tried to survey potential donors ourselves, we would not have gotten nearly as accurate of an estimate of our capacity.” She added that although she was not on staff when the decision was made to hire The Covenant Group, she immediately had a favorable first impression. Board members who had previously worked with The Covenant Group were extremely complimentary. They shared many positive stories about past campaigns where they had worked together with Len Moisan and his team. Kathy Dobbins, Wellspring’s Executive Director is pleased to say that The Covenant Group lived up to their strong reputation. “Everything The Covenant Group did to help us position the campaign in the initial stages was helpful. From the development of the case statement; to our campaign materials; to the training of our Board members in solicitation strategies; all these steps laid the foundation for eventual campaign success.” Doctor doubts the campaign would have achieved the same results without the counsel of The Covenant Group. “They brought such a high level of professionalism, a wealth of experience and a strong track record of integrity and campaign success… just being associated with The Covenant Group helped us raise more money. Their connections to key players in the community helped us open the right doors.”

Board members are pleased with the results of the campaign, the proceeds of which now top $2.1 million. As a result, the new crisis stabilization unit is now operational and has doubled the services available to the community. Dobbins lists additional benefits of the campaign, “Not only can more clients be served, but our program sites are safer, more comfortable and more energy efficient. And with the agency’s new administrative center, the total workplace environment is improved. Due to the increased space, we now have in-house training facilities and we can host on-site Board and committee meetings, which we could not do before.”

Doctor concluded by saying that she would recommend The Covenant Group to other organizations seeking fundraising counsel; in fact she “does it at every opportunity.” Dobbins added, “They really meshed with us and were a great fit for our organization. They motivated our Board members to keep the campaign moving…they were vigilant and tenacious, yet respectful. Personally, more than just having received good counsel, I feel like we’ve made good friends.”

Louisville Deaf Oral School, Louisville, KY

The Louisville Deaf Oral School was at a crossroads. After 50 years of operating as a leading educational facility for deaf and hard of hearing children, they had begun the process of determining what they were going to be for the next 50 years. The Covenant Group stepped in to help them realize a new vision.

Louisville Deaf Oral School had decided it was time to expand their mission. They embarked on a capital campaign to raise funds for the new Edith & Henry Heuser Hearing Institute. This unique institute would continue to provide child education to the deaf and hard of hearing, but would also house an on site medical clinic, an assistive device center, a hearing research facility, and numerous other facilities for the deaf community.

“Originally, we hired another firm to help us with a feasibility study,” commented Mona McCubbin, Louisville Deaf Oral School’s Director. “They said we might be able to raise between $1.5 and $2.0 million for an educational institute. We decided to call on The Covenant Group to help us plan and execute our campaign.”

“One of the biggest things that Dr. Moisan brought to our project was a steadfast belief in our vision and a lot of enthusiasm. Dr. Moisan’s enthusiasm was contagious! He helped us in numerous ways, from consulting and helping us to determine which strategic actions we should take to conducting training for our board members. The Covenant Group performed additional feasibility reviews, found key donors in the community and set us off in a new direction.”

“As a result, after less than one year we have raised over $4.5 million, and we believe that we will finish the campaign later this year with nearly $6.0 million in donations. If we had not contacted The Covenant Group, we would have short-changed our cause.”

Thanks to The Covenant Group’s input and direction, Louisville Deaf Oral School will occupy their new building debt-free and set a national standard for a facility of this type.

Brooklawn Child & Family Services, Louisville, KY

Brooklawn Child and Family Services faced a challenge.  The organization, which provides residential treatment programs that help severely emotionally and behaviorally troubled boys, experienced an 80% increase in referrals from state agencies between the years 2004 and 2006.  Also, over the previous four years, the number of children served daily in residential care programs increased from 65 to 107.  Brooklawn was out of space and something had to be done.

The Board and staff knew they needed new facilities, but they were a bit uncertain as to how to proceed.  That’s when they turned to The Covenant Group for help.  The first step was to conduct a feasibility study and they combined it with a development audit.  Mike Schultz, Vice President of Development, recounted the key role this approach played in the overall success of the campaign.  “These processes were very helpful.  The outcomes gave us a good idea of who we were as an organization and what we would be capable of achieving in a campaign.”Read more