Success Story: The Villages of Indiana

An image of The Villages' logo. It says "The Villages: Foster Care, Adoption, Family Reunification," in blue letters, and beside the text there is an orange silhouette of three children holding hands.

“The Villages champions families for children through foster care, adoption, and family services,” said CEO Sharon Pierce.

But Sharon wanted to do more to ensure that the organization continued to thrive for years to come.

“The work we do is vital,” she said. “But it’s full of risk.”

Sharon wanted to manage risk, and ensure that The Villages were following nonprofit best practices so the organization could pursue their mission for years to come. To help with these concerns, Sharon brought in Zac Kester, managing attorney of Charitable Allies.

“I look for kindred spirits. I look for partners who believe in our mission as we do,” she said. “I got to know Zac. He shares the commitment to our mission that our staff has.”

Zac provides ongoing support for The Villages by strategizing with leadership about their various challenges or areas of improvement, as well as providing educational seminars to staff to ensure everyone in the organization is on the same page about best practices. And Sharon has noticed a difference in her staff since beginning to work with Charitable Allies.

“Our social workers are our front line heroes. They’re focussed on what this child, and this family needs,” she said. “And now they’re understanding how we blend that with best practices and risk management.”

Like any great leader, Sharon knows that fostering continued improvement and growth is key to ensuring that The Villages remains a beacon of hope in the community.

“For us, our relationship with Charitable Allies is in no way a one and done. It’s an ongoing partnership,” she said. “They want to help us sustain the mission the best possible way. The fact that we seek them out as a partner on an ongoing basis, really speaks to the positive experience we’ve had.”