by Lorie Slutsky, President, The New York Community Trust
Many of New York’s nonprofit groups are excited about receptive ears in a de Blasio administration that campaigned on promises of a more equitable city, but they’re also anxious about losing a mayor who shared his management expertise as well as his wealth with nonprofits.
How can these groups adjust to a new era that might be complicated by a budget gap of as much as $2 billion? One way to nonprofit success, we believe, is stronger innovative management by nonprofits themselves.
Three nonprofits serving children, job-seekers and the hungry and homeless received the New York Community Trust-New York Magazine Nonprofit Excellence Awards for creative management strategies.
All three have figured out how to deliver better results while using limited money wisely — and even saving money. Many of their lessons can be useful to the city’s other 27,000 nonprofits as well as thousands of others in the suburbs. Here are a few lessons from each of the winning organizations:
by Michael Barrett, Vice President of Grants Management,
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)
The bond between pets and humans goes way beyond simple obligation and affection. Very often, things that affect one invariably and profoundly affect the other.
We regularly see this during major life events, tragedies and disasters — when a pet is helped, found or rescued, the owner typically benefits just as much as the animal. That’s easy to picture. But what’s less known is that overlooking a pet’s needs can actually hamper the delivery of critical social services to their owners. When forced to choose between a pet and their own welfare, many owners will choose the pet.
Extreme and subtle displays of the human-animal bond are commonplace — perhaps even in your own life — and certainly in the lives of many of the constituencies served by grantees of Philanthropy New York members.
Published November 26, 2013
Tags: Common Cause, democracy, Federal Communications Commission, Free Press, Helen Brunner, media, Media Democracy Fund, Media Impact Funders, media policy, Michael Copps, net neutrality, Robert McChesney, University of Illinois, Vincent Stehle, William C. Bullitt Foundation
by Media Impact Funders
Over the last decade, media reformers have been waging a series of high-stakes battles against news consolidation, the Balkanization of the internet and the explosion in political ads, and scored signature victories for local media control and freedom of expression.
On November 7, Media Impact Funders and Philanthropy New York invited three experts to discuss the fraught relationship between democracy and media: Robert McChesney, Professor of Communication, University of Illinois and Co-Founder of Free Press; Helen Brunner, Director, Media Democracy Fund, and Michael Copps, former Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission and current Special Advisor, Media and Democracy Reform Initiative at Common Cause.
Media Impact Funders Executive Director Vince Stehle moderated the event, and penned a related piece for The Chronicle of Philanthropy.
by Pat Swann, Senior Program Officer, Community Development and the Environment, The New York Community Trust
Experts in nonprofits often call management the “non-sexy” part of philanthropy. It’s true: Sharpening strategies and refining management techniques aren’t as appealing as feeding children or building an arts center.
But in recent weeks, I’ve been reminded that management is, in its own way, sexy. I’ve been hearing a lot about effective management because we helped sponsor the New York Community Trust-New York Magazine Nonprofit Excellence Awards.
Published November 14, 2013
Diversity in Philanthropy , Thought Leaders
Tags: Asian American and Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy, Asian Women Giving Circle, Connected to Give, diversity, Felicia Herman, Gill Foundation, giving circles, Hali Lee, Kashif Shaikh, Lynn Schusterman, Patricia Evert, Pillars Fund, The Natan Fund
by Felicia Herman, Executive Director, The Natan Fund
As the Executive Director of The Natan Fund, a Jewish giving circle, for almost a decade, I have long been positively evangelical (so to speak) about the power of giving circles for engaging new people in philanthropy and in the needs of their communities. Giving circles seem to be experiencing new momentum, perhaps due in part to high-profile conversations about collective giving inspired by Laura Andrillaga-Andersson’s work on the subject, Doris Buffett’s Learning by Giving Foundation (in which university students learn about and then practice collective strategic philanthropy), and new research on younger givers that highlights the important role that social networks, communal connections and innovative philanthropic platforms play in inspiring younger people to give.
My work at Natan has been broadened tremendously by some recent cross-cultural conversations about giving circles at Stanford’s Center for Philanthropy and Civil Society, at a Philanthropy New York panel on collective giving, and as part of Natan’s explorations into the needs of the Jewish giving circle field. These conversations have inspired me to think more deeply about the similarities and differences in the roles that giving circles are playing in different communities. I’m very much looking forward to a forthcoming report in the Connected to Give series on Jewish giving that will compare Jewish and other giving circles in considerable depth, but I want to share some ways in which these recent conversations have been shaping my thinking about this powerful philanthropic mechanism.
An aerial view shows signs for help and food amid the destruction left from Typhoon Haiyan in the coastal town of Tanauan, central Philippines, on Nov. 13. (AP Photo/Wally Santana)
by Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors
In the early days following a disaster, philanthropists naturally want to take action. With communities broken and people suffering, the call to give is compelling. If ever philanthropy should step up to help, many donors believe, it is in such times of dire and unexpected need.
Experienced donors often take pains to respond thoughtfully as well as quickly in crisis situations. Crisis philanthropy is no different than any other kind of giving. Donors benefit by gaining clarity about their values and motivations, their goals, their strategy, the ability to define and measure success and by thinking proactively about where they can find allies and partners.
The key to crisis giving is process, not panic. To this end, we offer a few thoughts to consider — a way for you to leverage the best practices developed by other philanthropists over the years.