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135 posts categorized "Disaster Relief"

Read of the Week: 'US Giving for Japan Disaster Exceeds $710 Million'

March 23, 2013

Jcie_earthquakeOn March 11, 2011, a massive earthquake off the coast of Japan triggered a tsunami that devastated more than four hundred miles of Japanese coastline, swamped (and permanently disabled) the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power complex, and left more than eighteen thousand people dead and half a million displaced from their homes. According to a new report from the Japan Center for International Exchange, Americans have donated a total of $712.6 million for relief and recovery efforts in Japan in the two years since the disaster -- the most ever given by Americans in response to a disaster in a developed nation and the fifth-largest giving total ever for a disaster.

The report, US Giving for Japan Disaster Exceeds $710 Million (5 pages, HTML), notes that initial disaster relief tallies underestimated the giving of tens of thousands of Americans who, instead of donating to the usual suspects, organized their own fundraisers, as well as off-the-radar groups with connections to Japan that launched fundraising campaigns of their own. Indeed, the report argues that whereas the outpouring of charitable donations following the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and the 2010 earthquake in Haiti was magnified by the well-documented poverty of the most of the victims and survivors, the American response to the disaster in much wealthier Japan seems to have been motivated in many cases by personal and/or corporate ties -- despite the fact that more than a few disaster-relief experts and media outlets suggested that Americans' donations would be more usefully applied to "everyday disasters" in poorer developing countries than in infrastructure-rich Japan.

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Weekend Link Roundup (March 9-10, 2013)

March 10, 2013

Daylight_savings_2013Our weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Communications/Marketing

In a two-part series on her Non-Profit Marketing blog (here and here), Katya Andresen shares highlights of a discussion she had with Allyson Kapin and Amy Sample Ward about the key themes in their recently published book Social Change Anytime Everywhere, including how nonprofits can use online tools to advance their work.

On the Communications Network blog, Courtney Williamson, the network's community manager, shares slides and video from Avoiding the Blind Spot: Telling Your Story With Pictures, a recent network webinar featuring Resource Media's Liz Banse and Scott Miller. Among other things, Banse and Miller outline three principles of good communication: 1) people are visual first, verbal second; 2) people's decisions and actions are based on emotional reaction more than rational thought; and 3) visuals are the most effective communications vehicles for evoking emotion and getting people to take action.

Disaster Relief

On the techPresident blog, Julia Wetherell looks at findings from a new Internews report on the effectiveness of crisis mapping following the 2011 Tohoku earthquake in Japan. Among other things, the report found that the crisis map created on the Ushahidi platform was "not as critical to [the humanitarian] response" as previously thought, in part because many victims of the disaster weren't aware of it. "The accessibility of crisis mapping was also dependent on the availability of Internet service," says Wetherell. To address that shortcoming, the report recommends strengthening IT infrastructure, particularly in less connected rural areas, before the next disaster hits.

NPR has a good interview with reporter Jonathan Katz, author of The Big Truck That Went By: How the World Came to Save Haiti and Left Behind a Disaster.

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Weekend Link Roundup (January 13-14, 2013)

January 13, 2013

Haiti-earthquake-anniversaryOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Disaster Relief/Recovery

It's been three years since Haiti, the poorest country in the Western hemisphere, was devastated by a magnitude 7.0 earthquake. In the weeks and months following the disaster, individuals and the international donor community stepped up with more than $5 billion in cash and commitments for relief and recovery efforts. So where do things stand today? Mark Leon Goldberg, managing editor of UN Dispatch, provides some basic facts and figures.

Nonprofits

Marie Deatherage, director of communications and learning at the Meyer Memorial Trust, curates a nice list of 2013 predictions for nonprofits, social entrepreneurs, and the social economy. Her list includes Lucy Bernholz's Philanthropy and the New Social Economy: Blueprint 2013, which is available as a free download from the Foundation Center's GrantCraft site; Pantheon president Mark Tobias ((@PanthTech) on "Ten Technology Trends to Watch in 2013"; and Nonprofit Revolution Now's "missing" predictions.

Philanthropy

Writing in Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, Nick Penniman and Ian Simmons take philanthropy to task for its "chronic" underinvestment in political reform at a time when the "special interests that finance and influence the political process have amassed unprecedented power." What would be an appropriate amount? ask Penniman and Simmons. Their answer? One percent, or as they write:

Some $300 billion is donated annually to charitable causes. So, $3 billion for reform. Yes, $3 billion sounds like a lot of money. But 1 percent of philanthropy is not excessive -- especially not for a purpose as important as maintaining a government of, by, and for the people. We spend magnitudes more than that funding the arts and humanities, fighting infectious diseases, providing the poor and needy with the services they need, and trying to improve our educational institutions. Committing a sliver of philanthropy to making sure Washington and the state capitals are free of corruption -- both legal and illegal -- seems like a smart investment. Doing so should not be seen as merely advancing an abstract concept of “good government,” but as a concrete and necessary step in advancing solutions to the great challenges of our time -- solutions that the philanthropic sector often invests in but never sees actualized....

Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, CEO and president of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation's largest healthcare philanthropy, is named one of New Jersey's most fascinating people and is profiled in depth by the New Jersey Star-Ledger.

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Nonprofits and Disaster Response: 5 Questions for Gary Bagley, Executive Director, New York Cares

November 26, 2012

(Laura Cronin is a regular contributor to PhilanTopic. Recently, she asked Gary Bagley, executive director of New York Cares, the city's largest volunteer organization, about the organization's work with local nonprofit partners in response to Superstorm Sandy.)

Gary_bagley-headshotLaura Cronin: City workers -- first responders, firefighters, transit workers, sanitation workers -- labored around the clock to restore critical systems in New York City that were overwhelmed by the storm surge created by Sandy. Alongside them were thousands of residents who provided volunteer support to victims of the storm and chipped in to clean up affected areas. Creative responses such as Occupy Sandy's  online registry and local groups like the Red Hook Initiative were part of a rapid, largely decentralized nonprofit response to the storm. Your organization has a long history of rallying volunteers and partnering with the leading nonprofits in the city, in ordinary times as well as in times of crisis. What did your Sandy response look like?

Gary Bagley: New York Cares has a Memorandum of Understanding with the New York City Office of Emergency Management through which we are responsible for mobilizing volunteers in response to disasters. So beyond the eight thousand volunteers who signed up to help, we had three full-time staff members stationed at the OEM as well as other staff fielding calls and e-mails from organizations and individuals that needed assistance. But because many nonprofits, schools, and faith-based organizations were as hard hit as residents of low-lying areas, we had to go beyond our traditional collaborative program delivery model. In the hardest-hit locations in Staten Island and Queens, we had teams of New York Cares staffers assessing -- on foot and by car -- local needs. At the same time, our volunteers canvassed neighborhoods, distributed food, and started on the debris cleanup. Now, a few weeks into the recovery, we see that much of the work will be about providing social services, from reading programs at libraries to adult education programs, in the most heavily impacted areas. Helping neighborhoods thrive again will be about much more than cleanup efforts.

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Weekend Link Roundup (November 17-18, 2012)

November 18, 2012

Pumpkin-thanksgiving-wreathOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Communications/Marketing

With the critical holiday fundraising season right around the corner, new reports from Charity Dynamics/NTEN and Blackbaud remind us that "Establishing emotional connections with donors remains paramount," writes Katya Andresen on her Non-Profit Marketing blog.

In a guest post on Beth Kanter's blog, Big Duck's Meghan Teich has some advice for nonprofit communications pros in the aftermath of a crisis or major natural disaster:

  • Make sure your staff is kept up to date on your communications plan and that they have a clear understanding of your messaging.
  • Strike while the iron's hot, but not so soon that it looks like you're capitalizing on the crisis.
  • Don't use the crisis as an opportunity to do general fundraising for your organization (unless you have a particularly relevant mission). Instead, create a specific fund or give donors a tangible item or event to which they can donate.
  • Reach out to other nonprofits, even those you view as "competitors," to explore how you might work together.
  • Keep your supporters and donors updated on the progress you're making in real time via e-mail and social media.

"I urge you to take the steps necessary to make sure you are engaging the right people in the right ways to reach your marketing goals," writes Nancy Schwartz on her Getting Attention blog. "And to start today." Sounds like good advice to us.

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Weekend Link Roundup (November 10-11, 2012)

November 11, 2012

VeteransMemorialDayOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Communications

In a guest post on the Communications Network blog, Philanthropy New York's Michael Hamill Remaley shares five lessons he learned from Superstorm Sandy about communications during and after a disaster:

  1. A little bit of forethought and planning can make a big difference to your organization's ability to keep communicating during a disaster, and once your team has been through a disaster like Sandy, it'll have a much better idea of what to expect next time.
  2. After disaster hits, be prepared to improvise. After the power grid for lower Manhattan went down, Remaley just started walking north from his apartment on the Lower East Side and kept walking until he was able to get a cell phone signal thirty-five blocks later.
  3. Make sure you have personal e-mail addresses for all staff and that they are cloud-based like Gmail addresses.
  4. To be an effective communicator during a crisis, you have to already have a loyal audience that follows you on a number of channels -- blogs, Web sites, Twitter, Facebook, etc.
  5. When you have a great team of people who are determined to stay connected, you can find mechanisms to make it work. There are so many channels for communicating now that, unless there is absolutely no cell service at all, you can find ways of establishing two-way communication with your key audiences even amidst significant system disruptions.

Disaster Relief

On Blackbaud's new NPEngage blog, Steve MacLaughlin looks at how fundraising in support of Superstorm Sandy relief efforts compares to that of other recent natural disasters, from the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004, to Hurricane Katrina in 2005, to the Japanese earthquake and tsunami in 2011. MacLaughlin says there are at least two aspects of Sandy giving to watch, including a rise in multi-screen fundraising and the long tail. "Giving to this and other disasters is going to continue for some time," writes MacLaughlin. "And very soon it will be important for organizations to start showing the impact these donations have had on those hit hardest by the storm."

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The Stars Come Out for Sandy Relief and Recovery

November 09, 2012

Sandy_coasterSuperstorm Sandy's devastating impact on the East Coast resulted in the loss of more than a hundred lives, thousands being displaced from their homes, power outages that affected millions, and crippling disruptions of the region’s mass transit systems. The estimated financial cost of the storm may exceed $50 billion, making it one of the costliest natural disasters in U.S. history.

In the aftermath of a disaster like Sandy, it's not unusual to see celebrities donating their time and money to relief and recovery efforts, and this disaster is no different. According to the most recent edition of the Foundation Center's Celebrity Foundation Directory, total giving by celebrity foundations exceeds $15 billion. As the center continues to track the response to Sandy, we're again seeing celebrities step up to donate their money and talents to help those affected by the storm. Here are a few examples:

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Weekend Link Roundup (November 3-4, 2012)

November 04, 2012

Sandy_recoveryOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Civil Society

On the NCRP's Keeping a Close Eye blog, Niki Jagpal discusses a recent article from the Poverty & Race Research Action Council about the "unsettling statistics on the status of voting rights in our country." According to PRRAC, voter identification laws, early voting restrictions, purging of "legitimate registered voters because of baseless suspicion of their citizenship status," and felon disenfranchisement continue to marginalize low-income individuals, communities of color, younger voters, and the elderly.

Disaster Relief

In the days following the devastating landfall of Superstorm Sandy near Cape May, New Jersey, nonprofit bloggers were busy sharing resources for those interested in contributing to relief and recovery efforts. On her Have Fun, Do Good blog, Britt Bravo has compiled a list of articles and Web sites that suggest ways to donate and volunteer; Idealist's Allison Jones has a few additional suggestions for New Yorkers looking to get involved in relief and recovery efforts; and longtime New Jersey resident Nancy Schwartz suggests three organizations on the ground in that state -- the NYC Rescue Mission, the Elizabeth Coalition to House the Homeless, and the Community FoodBank of New Jersey -- that are "providing services right now and need your help to keep it up."

Looking at the response to the storm through a tech/data lens, Philanthropy 2173 blogger Lucy Bernholz tracks, in a series of posts, the many ways in which organizations and individuals used information communication technologies during and after the storm, while the Weakonomist looks at how Sandy might affect the economy.

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Most Popular PhilanTopic Posts (October 2012)

November 01, 2012

Here in Manhattan, things post-Sandy are slooowly getting back to normal. For tens of thousands of people in Queens, Staten Island, and New Jersey, "normal" will never be the same. Our thoughts and prayers are with all who lost loved ones. For everyone else, these were the most popular posts on PhilanTopic in October:

What have you read/watched/listened to lately that you liked?

Corporations Pledge Support for Sandy Relief and Recovery Efforts

October 31, 2012

Sandy-AftermathAs officials from North Carolina to New Hampshire continue to assess the damage left by Superstorm Sandy, a number of financial institutions have announced million-dollar grants to the American Red Cross and other organizations for relief and recovery efforts.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the Citi Foundation had announced a donation of $1 million to the American Red Cross for relief efforts, while TD Bank Group and the TD Charitable Foundation had pledged a total of $500,000. HSBC USA also announced a $1 million commitment for disaster recovery efforts, including $500,000 to the American Red Cross in Greater New York, and said it would match dollar-for-dollar all employee donations to relief efforts through its employee giving program and would work with community partners to provide emergency housing and financial assistance in affected communities. And the Bank of America Charitable Foundation announced its own donation of $1 million, including $500,000 to the American Red Cross Hurricanes 2012 fund. The remaining $500,000 will be directed to national, regional, and local nonprofits to support long-term recovery needs in affected communities.

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Hurricane Sandy Resource Page

October 30, 2012

Hurricane-sandy-surgeSandy, the largest storm ever observed in the Atlantic, has moved inland, and local, state, and federal officials are scrambling to assess the damage. The Jersey shore was devastated, as was a neighborhood in the beachfront Queens community of Breezy Point, where more than a hundred and ten homes were destroyed by fire Monday night.

Manhattan (where mass transit and a quarter of the power grid are down) got lucky; if the storm had continued to meander in a northwesterly direction, instead of speeding up and veering sharply to the west, the city would've taken an almost direct hit at high tide under a full moon -- a nightmare scenario.

Still, the damage in the storm's wake is enormous. Countless numbers of trees have been uprooted and millions of people are without power. In some neighborhoods, power won't be restored for weeks, and communities up and down the coast, especially in New Jersey, will be cleaning up for months. Bloomberg estimates that the economic toll from the storm could surpass $20 billion.

We've put together a list of resources for those affected by the storm and/or who are interested in contributing to clean up and recovery efforts. If you know of other resources that should be added, please e-mail us at mfn@foundationcenter.org.

Good luck and speedy recovery to all.

Updated: 10:30 p.m. EST, Friday, November 15

Shelter

To find a Red Cross shelter, download the Red Cross Hurricane app, visit the Red Cross Web site, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767), text "**REDCROSS" (**73327677), or check their local media outlets.

From the USA.gov blog: To find a shelter near you, text “Shelter” and a zip code to 43362 (example: Shelter 01234). You can also download the FEMA mobile app, which includes a maps/shelter tab.

Donate

AARP Foundation Relief Fund
http://www.aarp.org/aarp-foundation/

American Red Cross
http://www.redcross.org/charitable-donations

Community Foundation for the National Capital Region - Neighbors in Need: Sandy Relief Fund
http://www.thecommunityfoundation.org/

Craigconnects
Using the Crowdrise platform, CraigsList founder Craig Newmark is matching the first $25,000 in donations to Sandy relief efforts. Update: Newmark's $25,000 was matched in a matter of days.

Daily News Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund
New York's "hometown newspaper" has started a Sandy relief fund and pledges that all funds raised will go directly to those in need. Make checks out to Daily News Charities, specify in the memo field or in a note that the donation is for the Hurricane Sandy Relief fund, and mail to:

New York Daily News
4 New York Plaza
New York, NY 10004

Feeding America
http://feedingamerica.org/

Global Giving - Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund
http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/hurricane-sandy-relief-fund/

Great Nonprofits
http://greatnonprofits.org/disaster-response/storm-sandy/

Hurricane Sandy Long Island Disaster Relief Fund
-- Donate online (http://www.newsday.com/sandyrelief), or make a check payable to:

Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief Newsday Charities Processing Center
25257 Network Place
Chicago, IL 60673-1252

Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City
https://www.nyc.gov/html/fund/html/donate/donate.shtml

New Jersey Recovery Fund
http://cfnj.org/new-jersey-recovery/

Network for Good
http://www1.networkforgood.org/hurricanesandy

North Star Fund's Grassroots Hurricane Relief Fund
http://northstarfund.org/grassroots-hurricane-relief-fund.php

Salvation Army
https://donate.salvationarmyusa.org/disaster

Save the Children - Hurricane Sandy Children in Emergency Fund
http://savethechildren.org/

United Way Hurricane Sandy Recovery Fund
http://unitedwaynyc.org/

Virginia Disaster Relief Fund
https://payments.vi.virginia.gov/donatenow

Foodbanks

City Harvest
http://www.cityharvest.org/donate-funds/

Community Foodbank of New Jersey
http://www.njfoodbank.org/

Met Council
http://www.metcouncil.org

Food Bank for NYC
http://www.foodbanknyc.org/

Island Harvest
http://www.islandharvest.org/

Long Island Cares
http://www.licares.org/

Sustainable Long Island
http://sustainableli.org/

Funders

Center for Disaster Philanthropy
http://disasterphilanthropy.org/

Council on Foundations' Disaster Grantmaking page
http://www.cof.org/events/Disasters.cfm

Conrad N. Hilton Foundation - Philanthropic Grantmaking for Disasters
http://www.hiltonfoundation.org/images/stories/Impact/InPracticeRpts/In_Practice_Philanthropic_Grantmaking_for_Disaster_2011.pdf

Haiti Relief

Hurricane Sandy Emergency Outreach - Haiti
http://www.americares.org/

Mobile Donations

Text HUMANE to 80888 to donate $10 on behalf of the American Humane Association

Text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 on behalf of the American Red Cross

Text SANDY to 80088 to donate $10 on behalf of Global Giving

Text STORM to 80888 to donate $10 on behalf of the Salvation Army

Text SUSTAIN to 20222 and reply YES to donate $10 on behalf of the Met Council

Text RECOVERY to 52000 to donate $10 on behalf of United Way Hurricane Sandy Recovery Fund

Text GIVEUSA to 777444 to donate $10 on behalf of World Vision

Volunteer Opportunities

NYC Service
https://www.facebook.com/nycservice

Other Resources, Disaster Assistance

Federal Emergency Management Agency
http://www.fema.gov/disasters

Brooklynites who sustained property damage in Hurricane Sandy can apply for funds from FEMA. To request federal aid, register at disasterassistance.gov, or call (800) 621–3362. The agency asks that applicants have their address, insurance information, and social security number ready. (Source: The Brooklyn Paper)

New Jersey Office of Emergency Management
http://www.state.nj.us/njoem/

New York City Mayor's Office
http://www.nyc.gov/

New York City Office of Emergency Management
http://www.nyc.gov/html/oem/

New York City Transit Tracker
http://transportationnation.org/2012/10/28/hurricane-sandy-what-you-need-to-know-for-transit-and-travel-in-nyc-area/

New York State Office of Emergency Management
http://www.dhses.ny.gov/oem/

Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management
http://oem.readyphiladelphia.org/RelId/606683/ISvars/default/Home.htm

Twitter's Hurricane Sandy Resource List
http://blog.twitter.com/2012/10/hurricane-sandy-resources-on-twitter.html

Weekend Link Roundup (October 13-14, 2012)

October 14, 2012

Our weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Communications/Marketing

In a guest post on the Communication Network blog, Hattaway Communication's Doug Hattaway shares a couple of insights based on psychology and neuroscience into how people make decisions:

Insight 1: Two mental systems work together to drive decision-making and behavior. Effective communications influence both intuition and cognition -- encouraging instant intuitive judgments and enabling fluent cognitive reasoning.

Insight 2: People are more likely to trust information that they easily understand. "Fluency" theory holds that if people readily comprehend an idea or information, they are more likely to believe it. Being easy-to-understand obviously doesn't mean the information is more reliable, but people are more likely to perceive it as true. Hattaway's advice for nonprofit communicators: "It's smart to dumb things down."

In a post on her Non-Profit Marketing blog, Network for Good's Katya Andresen shares seven tips designed to improve the stories that nonprofits tell about their impact, the people they help, and their generous supporters.

Disaster Relief

Eye-opening article by Deborah Sontag in the New York Times about Yéle Haiti, the charity created by Haitian-American hip hop artist Wyclef Jean in the wake of the January 2010 earthquake to help the people of that impoverished country.

Continue reading »

Weekend Link Roundup (September 15-16, 2012)

September 16, 2012

Lincoln-McClellan-AntietamOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Communications/Marketing

Looking to create or strengthen a tagline for your organization? Nonprofit marketing expert Nancy Schwartz has selected sixty-three nonprofit taglines from fourteen hundred submitted to her Getting Attention blog over the summer and is asking readers to help choose the 2012 Nonprofit Tagline Award winners. Voting is open through midnight on October 5, and if you subscribe to the Getting Attention e-update while you're on the site, you'll get a free copy of the 2013 Getting Attention Nonprofit Tagline Report (due in late fall).

In a post on the Communications Network blog, Louis Herr says that "limiting Web evaluation to a clickstream product like Google Analytics starves you of critical information." In his post, Herr highlights the argument made by Avinash Kaushik in Web Analytics: An Hour a Day -- to wit, that to be truly actionable, Web analytics should focus on measures of behavior, outcome, and experience, not just page views and click counts.

Fundraising

On the Philanthropy Potluck blog, Lissa Jones, director of diversity, equity, and inclusion at the Minnesota Council on Foundations, discusses the implications of the Millennium Communications Group's Donors of the Future Scan, which identified twelve key trends in giving. Those trends include a giving population that is growing more diverse, increasing pressure on endowed giving, and the growing popularity of "flash" and Internet giving portals.

Continue reading »

Weekend Link Roundup (August 11-12, 2012)

August 12, 2012

Our weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Communications/Marketing

Welcome to the Fifth Estate author Geoff Livingston has a list of tips for artists and writers seeking to brand and market themselves. The list includes:

  • Focus on actions.
  • Go beyond Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
  • Monitor social media conversations.
  • Let your fans embrace your experience.

Disaster Relief

GiveWell's Holden Karnofsky shares findings from a recent evaluation of charities working to help people in Japan recover from the earthquake and tsunami that devastated the northeastern part of the country in 2011. After reviewing reports about their activities over the past twelve months, Karnofsky concludes that he and his partners "stand by the conclusions we reached last year: that the relief and recovery effort did not have room for more funding, that those interested in emergency relief should have donated to Doctors Without Borders, and that those determined to help Japan specifically should have donated to the Japanese Red Cross."

Continue reading »

Weekend Link Roundup (July7-8, 2012)

July 08, 2012

Sun_tempOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Civic Engagement

On the Knight Blog, Elizabeth Miller looks at the report The Civic Tripod for Mobile and Games: Activism, Art and Learning, which explores the three dimensions of mobile games that focus on art or neighborhood civics: civic learning, performance/art, and social change. "Learning is inherent in games, since their engagement depends on providing challenges that are just barely possible," the report's authors note. "And when games are tied to physical space,

their action ties to learning about our own neighborhoods -- how to move through them, and to change them. The art of such games is often the physical world itself, with better sounds and graphics than any screen! And the digital side of games draws in the civic, if only because it is so easy to link to more information on how to take action, or how to learn more. In other words, the experiential nature of games pulls mobile experiences on civics into being a mix of art and learning....

Disaster Relief

On her Nonprofit Charitable Orgs blog, Joanne Fritz offers tips on how to help those affected by the wildfires raging in Colorado and elsewhere out West.

Fundraising

Fundraising is a valuable skill that nonprofits cannot afford to underinvest in, argues Joe Garecht on the Fundraising Authority blog. It is also a marketable skill that a good fundraiser can take to another organization if, as the title of his post suggests, "You Aren't Paying Your Development Staff Enough." Writes Garecht:

If your organization's executive director is making $150,000 per year and the top development staff member is making $60,000 per year, your nonprofit is in trouble. Likewise, if your organization is raising $5,000,000 per year and you only have one full-time development person, your nonprofit is in trouble. Under either scenario, you will never raise what you really could and should raise, and

never do all of the good that you really could do, simply because you aren't making a big enough investment in your development [function]....

"It seems that the Great Recession is similar to the Great Depression in one more way -- the drastic drop in large charitable gifts," writes Joanne Fritz in another post on her Nonprofit Charitable Orgs blog. Citing the Chronicle of Philanthropy's  Holly Hall, who found that the decline in large charitable gifts between 2007-10 mirrors a similarly precipitous drop between 1931-45, Fritz writes: "I have trouble with the idea that our tough economic times have been a match for the Great Depression, or that the decline in large charitable gifts will last as long. But I do think that large, monolithic fundraising campaigns of any kind are doomed...."

Governance

Gene Takagi has an excellent post on the Nonprofit Law blog, which he co-authors with Emily Chan, about the roles and duties of nonprofit board members.

Innovation

On the Forbes site, contributor Lori Kozlowski chats with Rockefeller Foundation president Judith Rodin about the meaning of philanthropic innovation in 2012.

Social Media

"Although we often focus our discussion on how organizations can use social media for marketing and fundraising, the best reason for nonprofits and foundations to be on social media is to practice thought leadership," writes Rosetta Thurman in a post on her eponymous blog. "When it comes to foundations in particular, this opportunity can be even more impactful, as they are often seen as conveners, curators and catalysts for change within the nonprofit community." Thurman goes on to single out the Geraldine Dodge Foundation, the Rasmuson Foundation, and the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region for blogging "not just to share information, but to influence public opinion and community collaboration."

And on the First Giving blog, Taylor Corrado highlights six nonprofit branding lessons from the book Made to Stick, by Dan and Chip Heath:

  1. Keep it simple -- Don't dumb it down, but get straight to the point.
  2. Embrace the unexpected -- In other words, create curiosity.
  3. Be concrete -- Provide details, examples, and facts.
  4. Be credible -- Testimonials from beneficiaries are more effective than those from board members.
  5. Don't shy away from emotion -- Humans respond better to emotions than statistics.
  6. Think "story" -- Good stories are unexpected, filled with concrete details, and should always be emotional.

That's it for this week. What did we miss? Drop us a line at rnm@foundationcenter.org.

-- The Editors

Contributors

Quote of the Week

  • "Writing is like driving a car at night. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way...."

    E.L. Doctorow (1931-2015)

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