New local project helps nonprofits "listen" to those they serve

Patient Experience Week (PX) took place April 25 through 29 this year. The annual event was initiated by the Beryl Institute in the Dallas-Fort Worth Texas area, and now has a national following, including participation in Memphis.

“This was the third year for the PX event which was designed to celebrate healthcare staff impacting patient experience everyday,” said Jason Wolf, President of Beryl Institute.

In a collaborative effort among several fundraisers, the Listen for Good project launched locally during Patient Experience Week. The project is dedicated to building the practice of listening to the people that nonprofit organizations and foundations seek to help. National funding is through Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors and includes the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Ford Foundation, David and Lucile Packard Foundation, and the W.L. Kellogg Foundation.

In Memphis, the Plough Foundation is among the funders supporting this first round of Listen for Good grantees, working with local nonprofit organizations A Step Ahead Foundation and SRVS.

“We are delighted to partner with and learn alongside the Fund for Shared Insight and other Listen for Good co-funders about how to do a better job of systematically hearing from the people we and our grantees seek to help,” said Rick Masson, Executive Director of the Plough Foundation. “Plough works to meet the needs of communities in Tennessee’s Memphis and Shelby County in an impactful and sustainable way.” 

“A Step Ahead Foundation (ASAF) and the Plough Foundation are working with Listen for Good to ensure A Step Ahead Foundation clients receive the best possible patient experience at select ASAF partner clinics,” explained Amy Mulroy, ASAF COO. “Patient Experience Week provided a focused time for us to celebrate our accomplishments. The Listen for Good Project was launched to ensure that the excellent work of A Step Ahead Foundation’s partner clinics is heard and celebrated on an on-going basis through feedback loops.”

“We are thrilled to be collecting feedback from the women that we seek to serve,” added Claudia Haltom, CEO and founder of A Step Ahead Foundation. “It is critical for nonprofits to listen to our clients to determine what we are doing well and how we can improve. A Step Ahead Foundation is extremely grateful to the Plough Foundation for bringing the opportunity to Memphis and for being a co-funder for this endeavor.”

Kiosks where ASAF clients can fill out a short survey about their experience are available at several clinic partner locations. 

SRVS is using its grant funds to cover training, technology and other costs associated with developing and administering a biannual survey, including a pilot survey of 60-75 people participating in the agency’s community based services day program. It is a city-wide program designed to provide meaningful person-centered activities for people supported by SRVS at settings in the community.

"Participating in Listen for Good means we are empowering the people we support to express what matters most to them,” said Tyler Hampton, SRVS Executive Director. “It has been far too commonplace to leave the voices of individuals with disabilities out of decision-making processes that affect their lives. SRVS is thrilled to be partnering with the Plough Foundation and Listen for Good to be at the forefront of reversing this trend."

Ultimately, Listen for Good is working to capture and share lessons learned with grantees, co-funders, and the field to improve the feedback movement and inform future efforts. 

Read more articles by Emily Adams Keplinger.

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