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Weekend Link Roundup (September 10 - 11, 2011)

September 11, 2011

9-11_ten_years_later In conjunction with the tenth anniversary of the September 11 attacks, this week's roundup features a selection of blog posts, articles, and magazine features that look back and reflect on one of the worst days in American history.

Disaster Relief

In a recent CNNMoney article, Aaron Smith shares a chart from the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University that compares the charitable response to five of the biggest disasters of the last decade: 9/11, the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the earthquake in Haiti in 2010, and the earthquake and tsunami in Japan earlier this year.


Instead of shrinking from the enormity of the events of September 11, the editors and staff at New York magazine decided to embrace it. The "Encyclopedia of 9/11" is likely to stand as the definitive chronicle of that terrible day for years to come.

Today's New York Times offers a special section "on the decade's costs and consequences, measured in thousands of lives, trillions of dollars, and countless challenges to the human spirit."

In the Atlantic, journalist and New York World producer Michael Keller interviews Columbia Center for Oral History director Mary Marshall Clark about the September 11th Oral History Narrative and Memory Project, which attempted to capture "how the attacks affected the lives of everyday New Yorkers over three years following the attacks...."

"If you'd asked me in the days after the event what I'd be feeling now, on the 10th anniversary, I think I'd have told you this would be a momentous anniversary with much introspection, many lessons learned," writes Public Parts author Jeff Jarvis on his Buzz Machine blog. "I'd have vowed that we must never forget and thus must revisit the scene and our memories, as I did even days later (that's why this blog was born). [And] I'd have been wrong...."

Nonprofit Management

Given the many the challenges of the last decade, GuideStar president and CEO Bob Ottenhoff explains why it's important for nonprofits to focus on developing resiliency. Writes Ottenhoff:

Resilience is an intriguing word to be used in the concept of 9/11. The dictionary defines resilience as "the power or ability to return to the original form after being bent or stretched." It doesn’t mean simply enduring or succumbing -- but taking determined steps to return to normal.

It's an important concept for all of us aspiring to run high-performing organizations. Adapting suggests we need to constantly respond to the world around us and not get so fixed on a certain course of action. The word "resilience" reminds us that despite our best efforts, bad things will happen to us and our organizations, but it is within our power to respond affirmatively....

On the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy's Keeping a Close Eye blog, Christine Reeves reflects on a recent Chronicle of Philanthropy article in which David Campbell, former vice president for programs at the Community Service Society of New York City, looked at how donors and nonprofits responded to the September 11 attacks and offers some takeaways of her own.


On her About.com blog, Joanne Fritz urges individuals and nonprofit organizations to visit the 911.org Web site and share what they will be doing to mark the tenth anniversary of 9/11.

Julia Smith and Diana Hsu of Idealist share a list of special events and volunteer opportunities for individuals interested in participating in the federally designated National Day of Service and Remembrance.

Last but not least, the Case Foundation's Jean Case offers a few reflections on the anniversary and a list of resources for Americans who want to honor those who perished on 9/11 with an act of service. "No matter how you choose to get involved," writes Case, "I hope you'll take a moment this weekend to pause and reflect on the significance of the day, and find opportunities to join with your community and loved ones to honor our nation and all those who have sacrificed in the name of freedom."

-- Regina Mahone

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