National TV show looking for nonprofit leaders

Are you a non-profit in need of funding? Colleagues of mine at TBA LLC are casting non-profit leaders to offer direct exposure to donors and funding sources in their television production. Casting closes September 20.  If you are interested, click here to apply right (it’s super easy and quick).  They will follow up with you to provide more information. Good luck!   Kris Putnam-Walkerly, MSW, is a philanthropy expert, speaker and advisor. Share

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Short on Time and Money? Consider a Virtual Site Visit

Site visits are a very valuable tool for funders, because they give you first-hand insight into the places and personalities that will put your charitable investments to work. In-person visits are always best, because they allow you to tour facilities, see programs in action, and observe grantees at work. However, sometimes a grantee can be hundreds – or even thousands – of miles from your foundation office, and getting to their location might be more than your schedule or budget may allow. In that case, consider conducting a virtual site visit. A virtual site visit uses web-based audio and visual connections to facilitate a face-to-face interaction with grantees or grantseekers. They are particularly helpful if your grant awards team (or … Continue reading Short on Time and Money? Consider a Virtual Site Visit

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Three Rules to Guide Foundation Policy Efforts

Over the past few years, I’ve been working with more and more foundations that choose to actively engage in public policy discussions as part of their missions. That’s encouraging, because when you get right down to it, nothing really changes unless public policy supports a change. But working in public policy can be messy, intimidating and often frustrating. Based on what we’ve helped our clients document about their policy work, here are three key things to remember before starting any policy effort. Engage multiple voices. No one person or organization has all the answers, and no single perspective or experience represents that of the group. The more voices you can engage, and the more varied the experiences and perspectives that … Continue reading Three Rules to Guide Foundation Policy Efforts

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Telling the Stories of Change

For several years now, funders have found themselves amid a rising tide of metrics and data. We look to numbers to tell us if we’ve “moved the needle,” “closed the gap” or otherwise made progress. We disaggregate data to better understand the populations we want to serve, and to determine where funding opportunities might lie. Don’t get me wrong, I believe that data is valuable in terms of gauging impact and return on investment. It definitely has it place in a grantmaker’s toolbox. But there are many facts of the human condition that defy a numeric assessment. There are feelings and changes in perception that are all but impossible for data to quantify. These are emotions like hope, caring, courage … Continue reading Telling the Stories of Change

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“Policy” Shouldn’t Be a Four-Letter Word

“Policy” is a four-letter word within many foundations. That’s probably because policy is a gateway to advocacy, which can lead to lobbying. And that, if done incorrectly, can land a foundation in trouble. Better just to steer clear. Or is it? Think about the work that you do on a daily basis to fight poverty, promote health, improve education, address any number of social ills. Then think about how many times you or those you work with have said, “You know, we wouldn’t have this problem if…” Chances are, whatever “if” is, it’s related to policy. That means if philanthropy is truly going to be effective, policy engagement may need to be part of the plan. We’ve been very fortunate … Continue reading “Policy” Shouldn’t Be a Four-Letter Word

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