Broncos President and CEO Joe Ellis visited with the Broncos' 2018 community partner organizations and their host representatives, who watched the Broncos' Monday OTA practice.
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. —** As a new season approaches, the football team isn't the only part of the organization that is making changes.
At the franchise's 2018 community partner summit Monday, the community development department announced Monday that it has reshaped its methods when it comes to partnering with community organizations.
"Previously, for about the last decade, we have operated with a flagship partner model," Executive Director of Community Development Allie Pisching said. "We've had anywhere from six to 12 flagship partners that we've worked with. When we did our strategic planning, which we do every offseason, the department and I sat down and we realized that we were working with far more than 10 organizations. So we wanted to really elevate all of our partnerships up to the level where we could do more in an impactful way.
"We have a great pool of assets to use — opportunities with tickets and game-day experiences, player appearances, events, monetary donations, capital improvement projections — and by spreading that across more organizations, we can do so much more in the community, and it really opens up the doors for new organizations for us to learn about and really grow our impact across the city."
Instead of flagship partners, the Broncos now have five community focuses: youth development, quality of life, health and wellness, youth football and civic engagement.
This will allow for more inclusivity in the organization's community outreach in regard to the other charitable nonprofits with which the Broncos will partner and it will allow for greater sharing of resources.
One of the organizations that should receive a boost from this change is Volunteers of America, a nonprofit with the mission of helping the most-vulnerable populations.
"Before we were kind of, we would reach out to them for items donated for auctions and some other stuff, but now it seems like they're more kind of integrated into what our mission is, which is to help the most vulnerable populations," said Bradley Gulley, director of volunteer services for the organization. "So, really looking at some of our youth programs, they're becoming a key partner with them. We do the 'Stuff for Students' campaign, which is partnered with 9News, King Soopers and, now, the Broncos. We're out at training camp, which helps us get our name out there but also collected a ton of money and supplies for kids in need. And then this year, they're also partnering with our 'Camp Postcard' program, which will send inner-city kids up to camp during a week in summer, and it's a partnership with the Denver Police Department."
For the Broncos, it's all about maximizing their impact on the community.
"We have a tremendous responsibility, being a professional sports franchise," Pisching said. "In our community, those organizations, those fans, those kids are looking up to us to do the right thing. By having a great group of organizations that we've vetted, that we've worked with — some for more than two decades — we can tie our players into causes that are important to them. We can make sure that players who want to give back have the opportunity to give back, not only with their monetary donations or any financial responsibility, but with their time, just something as simple as going to the children's hospital once a week or serving lunch at Denver Rescue Mission's homeless shelter. Those are little things that the players and our staff can do to make Denver a better place."