Applications now being accepted for StoryGrowing WNY!


Applications are now being accepted for the second cohort of StoryGrowing WNY! StoryGrowing WNY is a free, six-month training program designed to enhance and expand the ability of nonprofits to share their story effectively and to nurture their organization’s growth through effective communications. It is hosted by The Health Foundation for Western and Central New York and The John R. Oishei Foundation.

Eight teams will be chosen based on written applications that are due on January 28, 2018. StoryGrowing offers teaching, coaching and mentoring to help organizations build their internal capacity in identifying and applying various story types and using stories in advocacy, development and community outreach. Teams will also develop skills in branding, communications, and in using tools such as video, digital media, and public relations to tell their stories.

Using a curriculum designed in part by Andy Goodman of The Goodman Center, the eight teams will go through a series of workshops taught by local marketing and communications experts starting in February. The teams will be encouraged to integrate storytelling into their communications efforts and will have access to professional assistance and feedback at no cost to them.

In addition, each team will be mentored by a “Sherpa” who will guide the team in their learning and implementation efforts, and they will have access to a number of coaches who have expertise in specific areas of marketing, communications, branding, design and visual arts.

For more information on the program and to download an application, visit

StoryGrowing WNY was modeled on a similar program held by the Health Foundation in Central New York in 2016. The first local program was held in late 2017 through early 2018 with eight nonprofits participating. StoryGrowing WNY is a collaborative capacity building effort between the two sponsoring foundations. It was created to help build the internal communications expertise of their grantees and other community organizations serving Western New York.