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Weekend Link Roundup (April 23-24, 2011)

April 24, 2011

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


On her Getting Attention blog, Nancy Schwartz suggests when the key to crafting an effective fundraising appeal about a difficult issue is to "focus on the positive changes...that will be made by the organization's work" and then describe the strategy to be used.


"In the charitable marketplace, diversity and inclusiveness can be powerful strategies for building the capacity of nonprofits and foundations, and helping them fulfill their mission of boosting the capacity of people and places in need," writes Todd Cohen on his Inside Philanthropy blog. "But while they preach diversity, far too few nonprofits and foundations will take on or can handle the difficult job of practicing it...."


Future Fundraising Now blogger Jeff Brooks shares this chart from Jessica Hagy of Indexed which highlights why it's important to respect your donors.

With increased postage rates, "shorter attention spans of...direct mail readers, and less discretionary spending capacity by donors," direct mail will be challenging for nonprofits in 2011, writes Joanne Fritz on her About.com Nonprofit Blog. To help development staff get back to basics with their fundraising letters, Fritz shares some advice from professional fundraiser Allan Sharpe.

Nonprofit Management

CBS caused a ruckus last week with a "60 Minutes" segment that accused best-selling author Greg Mortenson of exaggerating the number of schools built by his charity, the Central Asia Institute, and of improperly using funds donated to CAI. Withholding judgment, GuideStar president and CEO Bob Ottenhoff offers a few lessons to-be-learned from the controversy on his blog.


On his White Courtesy Telephone blog, Greater New Orleans Foundation president Albert Ruesga writes an open letter to younger people in philanthropy. In the letter, Ruesga explains what he believes needs to happen in order for philanthropy to change. Says Ruesga,

I believe [philanthropy] will only evolve into an engine of transformation by the efforts of people -- young and old -- who are honest about the gap between its aspirations and its outcomes, and who offer an alternative to what has become, in my view, an especially expensive means of maintaining current systems of social, economic, and political oppression....

Social Media

Networked Nonprofit co-author Beth Kanter shares some examples of how arts and cultural organizations are using QR codes -- bar codes that can be scanned by a mobile phone and are currently being printed in magazines and on T-shirts to point people to more information online.

And on her Non-Profit Marketing blog, Katya Andresen explains why "it's crazy to participate in NO social media, and...equally nuts to participate in ALL social media."

That's it for now. What did we miss? Drop us a line at rnm@foundationcenter.org. And have a happy Easter!

-- Regina Mahone

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