Calabash funnels resources to emerging and existing communities through fiscal sponsorship, technical assistance, and partnerships. To date, Calabash has funneled over $125,000 to mission-aligned groups for projects ranging from: land purchase, farm infrastructure support, etc. Through Calabash, OurSpace also offers fiscal sponsorship, consulting services and administrative technical assistance to mission-aligned organizations and individuals in the areas of cooperative education & formation and farm enterprise marketing & strategic planning. Calabash also develops regional partnerships to attract funding to develop new initiatives that further OurSpace’s mission.
Who is Calabash for?
Calabash is for you if you are strictly in need of an established entity under which to do a project with a predetermined timeline, scope and end date. The project must be aligned with our organizational mission to help systematically disadvantaged farmers, builders, healers, and educators attain sovereignty and sustainability. This is great for those folx who are coalescing around a specific project but are not yet ready to form a cooperative or other self-sustaining entity. Fiscal sponsorship can later grow into co-op development or co-op formation (see The Ujima Initiative), or terminate with the end of the project. In this contractual arrangement, the following apply:
Project responsibilities and reporting requirements fall on the individual(s) who have set out to do the work on the project. OurSpace tracks all reporting deadlines to ensure agreements are kept with donors and grantors.
OurSpace can offer resources such as payroll, bookkeeping, administrative infrastructure (e.g., channel in Slack workspace, microsite).
Individuals remain largely autonomous in completing the project (i.e., OurSpace does not “take over” the project in any way).
In order to maintain the systems and infrastructure necessary to support projects, we typically charge a sustainability fee of 8% of the awarded amount. This fee is slightly higher (10-12%) for government grants depending on the scope and reporting requirements.
OurSpace also offers fiscal sponsorship services to some established cooperatives or social businesses. In these cases, the co-op is often in need of an established 501c3 nonprofit entity to facilitate grant disbursement. The long-term sustainability plan and organization goals are key factors in determining whether established co-ops are a fit for fiscal sponsorship. Most of the conditions of the contractual agreement still apply.