Community Engagement

Title: Civic Engagement Feasibility Study Project

Start Date: July 10, 2023

Organization: MFS Social Purpose Works

Location: Hybrid

Social Purpose Works (SPW) is an innovative social enterprise program of Metropolitan Family Service (MFS), a Portland, Oregon social service agency since 1950. SPW recruits pro bono (volunteer) professionals for nonprofit project-based opportunities in Oregon and SW Washington. SPW is recruiting candidates for a Civic Engagement Feasibility Study project for the United Way of the Columbia-Willamette. Their mission is to improve lives, strengthen communities and advance equity by mobilizing the caring power of people across our region.

Project Description: United Way of the Columbia-Willamette wants to create a resource that makes civic involvement inviting and accessible, promotes diverse, intergenerational engagement, and helps inform and navigate our complex civic landscape. They seek skilled pro bono professionals to collaborate and investigate the feasibility of developing a comprehensive online, user-friendly PDX Civic Engagement Center (CEC) that inspires and supports people of all ages in Portland to contribute their time, talents and/or treasure to help Portland thrive. Your expertise can help United Way understand the market for, operational recommendations, technical requirements and fiscal viability of the PDX CEC before they commit resources to it.

They are looking for 2-3 professionals to work collaboratively on this endeavor.

Have you managed a project, effectively establishing a timeline and tracking project details?

Have you developed a business or conducted a feasibility, strategic, or marketing plan?

Would you enjoy learning about organizations that are making a difference in the Portland metropolitan area?

If any of these are true for you and pique your interest, consider playing an important role in this project. This is a great opportunity to:

  • revitalize metropolitan Portland by helping people more easily contribute their knowledge, time, skills or treasure
  • help people of all ages better understand the central concerns facing our community, what people are doing locally to address these concerns and what has worked in other communities
  • explore ways to invigorate a sense of shared responsibility and hope
  • leave a valuable and sustainable legacy

Key Deliverables:

  • Draft a detailed feasibility plan outline.
  • Identify local organizations that foster civic engagement and/or volunteerism for outreach to learn about their populations served, plans and capacity to establish/maintain citizen participation, current tech and platforms used, marketing approaches, etc.
  • Host a technology focus group to gather information about technologies needed to facilitate cross-organizational communication and associated costs.
  • Conduct market research with community members to discern the best way to present, update and market civic opportunities.
  • Draft a 5-year budget for establishing, operating and sustaining the CEC, including risks.
  • Publish a Feasibility Study that summarizes the findings and recommended action steps.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Business Development
  • Market Research/Sizing
  • Project Management
  • Finance or Risk Management
  • Operations
  • Meeting Facilitation and content tracking
  • Cultural humility
  • Strong writing and communication

Time Commitment: Large project, estimated 210 hours – approximately 35 hours/month for 6 months.

Estimated project duration July 2023 – January 2024. They will develop a work schedule that accommodates the personal needs of the chosen candidate(s).

Resources: Staff from the School Improvement Project and United Way of the Columbia-Willamette will partner to provide leadership and support for this project.

Work Environment / Location: Work can be done from home and/or at the United Way Office in downtown Portland. United Way can provide a computer, phone, printer and internet if working on site.

The chosen candidate(s) must have their own tech and internet. This is a pro bono opportunity. To view this opportunity on our site, visit or contact Monica Wirtz at