Practicing Gratitude

Culture: People First
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Dec 9, 2014 | Blog

Some years ago I was going through a tough time personally and discovered the practice of gratitude. This involved intentionally writing in a journal what I was grateful for every day, and re-reading it every morning. I listed many things, from the mundane – “it was sunny today” to the emotional – “I am grateful for the love of my family.” I found that this deliberate focus on the positive improved my outlook and I felt happier. <--break->

I know that many of us in the not-for-profit sector can struggle with the enormity of the challenges facing us and the issues we are trying to solve. At times, our work can seem lonely and hard. And I also know that we are doing a tremendous job. We deserve to take some time to reflect on what we are grateful for. 

Here is my list:

Our Talent Team

I am grateful to the team at Vantage Point, which includes our knowledge philanthropists. Their commitment to each other and to our customers inspires me.  Value is not created by one person working alone, and success is not achieved without working together. Our growth this past year is due to the many people who give their time and talent (paid with money and paid in other ways) to our cause.

Our Funders

We are blessed to have funders that believe in and support our work. The City of Vancouver in particular has been an amazing partner – creative, open to new ideas, and committed to building the capacity of the organizations it funds in a real and meaningful way. Other funders include the Divisions of Family Practice, United Way of the Lower Mainland, BC Gaming, and SAP. As well, we very much appreciate the individual donors that have contributed funds to transform not-for-profit leadership. 

Our Clients

We learn so much from the participants in our programs and from the people who call us with questions about board governance, leadership, or planning. Participants are eager to share their expertise through peer-to-peer learning, and we are grateful to them for making our sessions more interactive and relevant. 

Our Board

I am grateful for the members of our board, and in particular Nancy More, our board chair. Each Vantage Point board member is deeply committed to the organization and our mission. They are proud of the impact we are making and give a lot of their time and talent to support our work. Shared leadership can be tricky, and when it works well it is a gift.


What are you grateful for this year?

Denise Baker headshot


Denise Baker

Denise Baker was the Executive Director of Vantage Point and is passionate about change management and growth, cultivating collaborative environments and developing leadership in others. She has held leadership positions in many industries, including Director of Worldwide Education at Business Objects and Assistant Dean at the Sauder School of Business. Denise has an Honours English Degree and a Master of Library and Information Science from UBC.

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