At Social Finance we talk about change more than anything else. How, we ask ourselves, can we help change the way our society works to better serve people experiencing difficult challenges in their lives and communities?
Working to address social challenges is often overwhelming. It can be tempting to seek out simplicity. Instinctively, society looks for a single leader or organisation as the route to change and creates a linear relationship between issue and solution. In Social Finance’s experience, there is rarely an easy fix. Addressing social problems is not straight-forward and imagining that there is a silver bullet in the form of an individual, organisation or intervention creates fault lines in how society tackles social problems. If an issue has existed for decades, it is rarely within the province of one organisation to fix it and often the answer lies beyond any one sector.
Social Finance has no claims to having all the answers. We respect and admire expert social workers, counsellors and managers. They have experience which we cannot do without. But if you are working long hours running essential services it can be very difficult to find the time, resource and mental energy to analyse new data, dig into the roots of a problem and imagine an alternative set of solutions. Change happens when people come together to examine hard facts and ask appreciative questions: What works? And what doesn’t? Why and how do projects succeed or fail? How can we create meaningful relationships and genuine partnerships to achieve lasting social change?
Explore our thinking in our recent report, Making Change Happen