We would love to hear all about your NPP journey and the incredible tips and tricks you’ve learned along the way! We also want to know about any obstacles you faced and how you overcame them. Sharing your experiences can help inspire and motivate others in their own journeys. So please, don’t hesitate to share!
Hey Implementers! We’re so happy you’re here! Along with the documents to guide you through the NPP process in our resource library, there are so many “soft skills” that help the program and relationships with pantries run smoothly. Here are a few of my favorites that have helped me when implementing:
1. Get organized!
Reviewing the process, the documents for each step of the process, and knowing what is coming next helps things run much more smoothly. When I am organized, I feel confident in guiding the pantry through the program and am poised to more readily answer questions about the process. Being organized ensures I get the information I need at the right times in the most efficient way possible; when I’m looking forward a few steps I can gather info now that I will need down the line instead of coming back to the pantry multiple times with multiple requests.
2. Be Honest With the Pantry
Being open and upfront about what you can and cannot do for the pantry makes for a smoother process and relationship! It is important to be transparent in the beginning about who will be taking on what work and how much time the pantry should expect to / can put into the program. Remember that this is a collaborative relationship! You bring experience, resources and potential connections while the pantry brings their person power, existing partnerships, and any funding they have for pantry changes.
3. Make It Fun!
Celebrate the pantry! Building positive relationships is the foundation of a trauma informed approach and this is also true for your relationship with the pantry. Try to bring a sense of excitement and creativity to the process, which will help the pantry leadership feel those things too. When they get excited, amazing things can happen! Also remember to stay flexible and know that not every pantry has to go for gold. Certifying at a bronze or silver level with a feeling of achievement is better in the long run than certifying gold and feeling exhausted and drained by the program (for both you and the pantry!).
These tips are great! Thank you for sharing
An obstacle that I faced as an implementor was communicating effectively with my sites. My initial assumption was that all my sites would respond well via email. One thing that helped me overcome this challenge was taking the time to develop sincere relationships with each site individually. By doing this, I think this allowed me to strengthen our relationships and positively affect our collaboration. Through that, I was able to find what mode of communication worked the best and found that some sites preferred connecting in person, through text, and phone call!
Friendly tip: take time to build relationships with your sites and their ambassadors! Individualized implementation styles were what worked best for me!