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Weekend Link Roundup (October 22 - 23, 2011)

October 23, 2011

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


Writing on her Non-Profit Marketing blog, Katya Andresen suggests that at this time of year fundraisers need to ignore the cliche "it's fundraising season." "The problem with that framing," says Andresen, is that "time of year is not a reason to give, unless it's the last week of December, in which case there is a tax year deadline relevant to donors. We may live by the campaign calendar, but our audiences do not...."

Guest blogging on the Tactical Philanthropy blog, Communicate Good founder Rich Polt has a few suggestions for funders and their grantees facing conflicts of interests in their communications campaigns. Writes Polt:

This tension in funder-grantee communications mirrors the already documented tensions between funders and their grantees in other areas: program efficacy, mission drift, boardroom relations, etc. In a study by the Center for Effective Philanthropy on funder-grantee relationships, a key finding (detailed on the bottom of page 10) is that the "pressure grantees feel to modify their priorities in order to receive a grant" is an important contributor to the measure of the overall relationship. We know this is a very real issue. So it stands to reason that this also impacts the realm of communications.

While I am looking at this problem from the lens of the nonprofit, it is equally possible for the reverse situation to hold true. When smaller foundations, ambitiously working to create their own brand in the market, make grants to powerhouse nonprofits, they run the risk of having their messages eclipsed by that of their steamrolling grantees....


On the White Courtesy Telephone blog, Greater New Orleans Foundation president Albert Ruesga wonders what "would be the understandings and principles that would make for a good discussion about racial inequity."


After examining three recent surveys that highlight the highs and lows of the current fundraising climate, About.com's Joanne Fritz concludes that "[p]robably, the bottom line is that things are turning up for some organizations, and that sticking to one's knitting is the best way to get through a still turbulent environment."

Nonprofit Management

On the Stanford Social Innovation Review blog, Taproot Foundation founder and president Aaron Hurst offers five examples of "best" practices every nonprofit leader should ignore. His list includes recruiting and managing volunteers, customized Web design, and a social media presence.

In a post on his blog, GuideStar president and CEO Bob Ottenhoff advises nonprofit human resources directors to "embrace adaptability," especially during times of economic uncertainty.


"Philanthropy has a role in the ecosystem of funding for public goods," writes Lucy Bernholz on her Philanthropy 2173 blog. "It is one key way in which we use private resources for public goods -- volunteering and impact investing being two others. [But claims] that philanthropy can replace public funding fail to understand its actual scope and potential. Counting on it to provide core public services is, among other things, simply undemocratic...."

Guest blogging on the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy's Keeping a Close Eye blog, Philanthropic Ventures Foundation executive director Bill Somerville looks ahead to 2014 and shares six predictions for philanthropy.

That's it for now. What did we miss? Drop us a line at [email protected]. And have a great week!

-- Regina Mahone

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