Catalyst Learning Resource

As part of the MK Catalyst project a detailed audit was undertaken with each participating organisation, which helped to identify development needs. These were woven into a CPD programme that ran over the course of Catalyst (2013 to 2015). So that the learning can be shared across Milton Keynes and beyond, we have compiled the following overview of the training that was delivered. All the slides and supporting information/factsheets can also be accessed by clicking on the relevant links in ‘Resources to Download’.

If you would like to learn more about the MK Catalyst programme, the journey that has been undertaken and the organisations took part, you can read the MK Catalyst Evaluation Report.

Please note – copyright for all power point, fact sheets and handouts in this resource belongs with the creator (the trainer) and no elements can be reproduced without their permission.

Catalyst training sessions Useful links and resources to download
Session: ‘Being Heard’

Date: 19/11/13

Trainer: Diana Hatton and Abigail Branagan (Catalyst Project Managers) with guest speaker graphic designer Fraser Muggeridge –

Details: day-long session that looked at how to pitch and present your organisation effectively. It also covered understanding your organisational values and looking at how well these are communicated across all promotional activities (such as marketing materials).

Being Heard Resources:

Being Heard – How to Communicate Clearly PPT

Session: Introduction to Fundraising – with focus on Trust and Foundation Funding

Date: 27/1//13

Trainer: Debbie Read (Read Consultants) –

Details: General introduction to what funding sources are out there for the arts, how make your case for funding and the importance of monitoring and evaluation. The afternoon focussed on Trusts and Foundations funding.

Trusts and Foundations Resources:

Fundraising from Trusts and Foundations PPT

Trusts and Foundations Top 10 Tips

Session: Sponsorship part 1 and part 2

Date: 11 and 18/12/13

Trainer: Wendy Smithers – Arts & Heritage Fundraising Consultant, email:

Details: Introduction to sponsorship – looking at who to approach and how. The session was also used to identify a sponsor and start putting together a case for support, ready to present at the second session.

Sponsorship Resources:

Introduction to Sponsorship PPT

Sponsorship Handout

Session: Making the most of your website and using social media

Date: 11/12/13

Trainer: Sinead Mac Manus, CEO and Co-founder Fluency,, email:

Details: Exploring the effectiveness of the Catalyst organisations’ websites in terms of connecting with audiences. Session provided practical tips for maximising the site’s potential and also general social media training.

Social Media Resources:

Practical Social Media for Busy Organisations PPT

Improve your webpage SEO with this video.

Learn about Facebook apps with this video.

Plan you social media content with this content calendar.

Session: Running Friends, Patrons and Membership Schemes

Date: 15/1/14

Trainer: Heather Maitland,

Details: Day-long introduction to setting up (and looking at the benefits of) Friends, Patrons and Membership scheme including a short section on legacy giving and on-line giving.

Membership Schemes Resources:

Introduction to Audience Loyalty Schemes PPT

Friends and Membership Schemes Handout

Useful article on Friends and Membership schemes here.

Session: Crowdfunding for beginners

Date: 29/1/14

Trainers: Tarkan Ahmet, Zequs (no longer operational) and Marc Wilson, Photographer,

Details: An overview of crowdfunding – looking at how it works and what makes a successful campaign.

Crowd Funding Resources:

Crowd Funding for Beginners PPT


Session: Training for Board Members

Date: 7/5/14

Trainer: Debbie Read (Read Consultants) –

Details: Specific training for board members looking at their roles and responsibilities and what they can do to support their organisation.

Board and Governance Resources:

Better Board Presentation PPT 

Session: Creating an Effective Marketing Strategy

Date: 21/1/15

Trainer: Trainer: Emma Wilcox, Arts and Cultural Strategy, Planning and Project Management, email and

Details: This focused on how to carefully align a marketing strategy with wider organisational goals. It covered all aspects of how to put a marketing strategy together (including understanding audiences and the mechanisms to reach them, planning, allocating resources and telling your organisation’s ‘story’).

Marketing Resources:

Creating an Effective Marketing Strategy PPT 

Session: “Dealing with growth – the challenges of success”

Date: 24/3/15

Trainer: Emma Wilcox, Arts and Cultural Strategy, Planning and Project Management, email and

Details: This session provided strategies to help organisations embrace growth and to thrive – focussing on key areas such as what we mean by growth, knowledge needed, management strategies, change management and evaluation.

Dealing with Growth Resources:

Dealing with Growth PPT 

Session: How to Create a Strong Brand – Individual 121s with organisations

Date: 4/15

Trainer: Amy Morgan, Brand & Marketing Specialist, The Brand Architect, email

Details: Amy undertook 121s with each of the Catalyst organisations and created this fact sheet on How to Create a Strong Brand for this resource.

Brand Development Resources: 

Creating a Strong Brand