The Tindall Foundation is approached separately by people and organisations with similar interests and visions. Often they do not know of each other, or have not met to discuss ways they might work together or learn from each other.
As well, The Tindall Foundation Trustees may wish to advance a particular interest of their own, and reach out to those active in the relevant fields to look at ways of working on it together. In these and many other situations, The Tindall Foundation has a unique and over-arching role and opportunity to network with and between groups, to link like-with-like, and to convene people who may not have met, to share perspectives around a given issue, to brainstorm new collaborative ways of attacking it.
As a result of the ‘helicopter view’ the Foundation obtains from its funder perspective, it often becomes the hub of activity around particular issues or initiatives, especially in the early stages. Networking with other funders, key stakeholders, government and applicants is ‘business as usual’ for The Tindall Foundation, both for its own needs and to add value in non-monetary ways. The initiating and networking role Trustees and staff played to get the Reconnecting Northland and Youth Connections programmes off the ground are examples of this.
Similarly, linking one organisation to another doing the same sort of work is a daily occurrence. This can be as simple as a mention in an email, through to an offer of funding if a joint application was presented, and sometimes some funding to merge those that may have been independently submitted. Support for Regional Councils and the Cawthron Institute to develop a Land and Water website is one recent example of the sum being greater than the originally-presented parts.
Examples of convening include the ‘Stephen Tindall Dinners’, whereby Stephen has invited a dozen or so selected representatives from diverse interests to open-ended dinner discussions on topics like Social Investment, Freshwater Concerns and Health Workforce Issues.
The Tindall Foundation greatly values its role as a networker, linker and convener – a connector where value other than money can be added.