This guest blog post is written by George Hitz from the Idaho Soil and Water Conservation Commission. He works with local soil and water conservation districts, landowners, and partners to implement voluntary conservation on private land.
In 2020, I met with Sitka to discuss strategies on how to increase awareness of conservation projects and non-traditional partnerships. Our ideas overlapped and we began to collaborate to develop the Matchmaker and Project Finder.
Sitka’s open-source ProjectFirma online platform is utilized to track the progress and status of natural resource projects. With reporting and analysis functions that simplify cross-agency communications, ProjectFirma keeps getting better with frequent updates originating from ideas the community of platform users would like to see through.
One such requested feature was to incorporate a matchmaking service that would allow the organizations using the platform to share project ideas and potentially partner up with each other to achieve a common goal. The hope is that by fostering collaboration across platform users and pooling resources, environmental conservation programs can become stronger and more resilient in the face of future challenges.
A screenshot showing the Project Finder for the Friends of the Teton River.
Separated into two functions, the Matchmaker service is composed of a “Project Finder” for organizations looking to collaborate and a “Partner Finder” for proposed projects. In the same vein as a dating site or application, organizations are required to make a Matchmaker Profile. From there, the service will automatically “match” organizations with projects or other orgs based on the information given.
As the community of ProjectFirma users grows, there will be more opportunities to join forces with other organizations whose environmental conservation mission aligns with yours. Consider how the Matchmaker service could accelerate project timelines at a lower out-of-pocket cost.
To learn more about the ProjectFirma Matchmaker service and how organizations get paired with potential projects and collaborators, download this service sheet.