Working together to achieve more

17 Oct 2017



In 2014 Nation Builder brought together a Panel of top social investment experts that jointly developed the Good Giving Benchmarking Tool and Toolkits. This was a hugely valuable initiative that offered neutral space for peer-to-peer learning and relationship building amongst all participants.


This year, Nation Builder launched a 2nd phase of these expert Advisory Panel Co-labs but, this time, expanded it to 3 provinces for broader thought leadership and knowledge sharing. Since January, Nation Builder has hosted 15 co-lab Panels in 3 provinces involving more than 80 people, representing over 70 businesses, consultancies and NPOs, with more than 30hours of time spent sharing knowledge, brain storming, learning and networking.


Participants have included some of the top South African corporates, philanthropic Trusts, CSI consultancies, smaller businesses as well as a select group of expert advisors from the NPO sector. 


The focus of these Co-labs has been to bring different pockets of knowledge together - businesses and NPOs of all sizes and focus areas - in order to learn from each other, and then to take that outwardly to develop resources and knowledge-sharing for other businesses in SA, in the form of an online peer-to-peer learning platform in order to encourage and equip them to have a greater social impact. 


One of the main themes emerging from these 15 Co-labs is how to best engage in effective partnerships.  In a fun, homegrown twist, and in order to help us to categorise all the thought leadership and expert content, we distilled the information from all the 15 sessions into the a very local analogy or story of a traditional Zulu wedding/marriage process to capture the various phases of partnership. Take a look at the Zulu wedding analogy below to give you a sneak peek into how effective partnership will be unpacked on this peer-learning platform. 


This online platform is intended to offer shared learnings, best practice tips, case studies, animated videos and resources put together by CSI experts, practitioners, NPOs and consultancies so as to get a rounder perspective of best practice.


Unlike other knowledge sharing platforms, the Nation Builder peer-learning platform will also include an online community to ensure further learning and opportunities for dialogue and collaboration. Most importantly, however, this content is developed and written for South African businesses by South African businesses – homegrown content and collaboration at its best.


This online knowledge sharing platform will be launched at the end of October and will be freely accessible to any business committed to building our nation, and  keen to learn more about effective partners for greater social good . To be first in line to access this community, complete the 10min Social Investment Health Check Assessment here.


Henning is the public affairs director at Nation Builder. Visit


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