The theme of Florida Philanthropic Network’s 2015 Statewide Summit on Philanthropy, which is being held on January 29-30, is “The Next Big Conversations in Florida Philanthropy.” In the spirit of the Summit’s theme, this post is part of a series where we’ve asked some of our member leaders to share their thoughts on the next big conversations that should be taking place in Florida’s philanthropic sector. For more information on the Summit, visit www.fpnetwork.org/summit.
Thank you to Eric Kelly, President of the Quantum Foundation for sharing his thoughts on the next big conversation in Florida philanthropy.
People often think of Florida as an aging state and, as a health foundation, we’re well aware of the challenges presented by a large older population but for us, the next big conversation in Florida philanthropy has to be about younger people—the millennials—and how to reach, communicate and interact with them. And that means learning to speak “Technology.”
The millennials are a generation that’s been raised on technology and philanthropy is going to have to embrace this group’s entrepreneurial, tech-savvy spirit. We are going to have to use technology to change how health care is delivered, how the population stays informed about health issues, and how a young, dynamic healthcare workforce is going to get the job done.
At Quantum Foundation, we’ve decided to embrace this challenge. Increasingly we look to the best in business to see how they’re working it out. Philanthropy needs to learn and stay as up-to-date as leading businesses in order to tap into the human capital, the mindset, the motivators, and the channels of communication that are an integral part of life for younger people.
It’s a steep learning curve because it challenges traditional thought and strategies, but we can’t afford to be left behind in this race. So how can philanthropy, which can be entrenched in established patterns, best learn from the fast-paced world of technology? I believe we have to work with new partners who think differently.
Early next year, Quantum Foundation is partnering with Modernizing Medicine, a medical technology company based in Boca Raton. Under the leadership of CEO and Co-Founder Daniel Cane, the company recently secured $15 million in financing to develop new products that increase efficiency for doctors, improve patient outcomes, and transform healthcare. Quantum Foundation and Modernizing Medicine will host a tech weekend where the best and brightest will get together to solve pressing health issues in the community using technology. It’s these partnerships between nonprofit organizations and cutting-edge businesses that will keep philanthropy pertinent and sustainable.
Technology and how it enhances, not hinders, the progress of health management and delivery is going to have to be a part of the next big conversation. We’re going to have to learn to speak that language fluently if we want to stay relevant and be heard.
– Eric M. Kelly, President, Quantum Foundation