‘Our Neighbourhood’ Grants

first_imgApplications are now open for the Australia Post Our Neighbourhood grants which are aimed at funding community projects that build a more healthy and inclusive Australia.Applications for the grants close on Friday, 28 June 2013, with one-off cash grant payments of between $1000 and $25,000 on offer, with grant amounts based around how strongly the community project or initiative includes and supports disadvantaged groups in Australia.The initiative is aimed at giving services that met these criterions a needed boost, in order to provide all Australians with necessary services, maintain and support diversity, grow community spirit and help areas recover from previous crisis.If you believe your community project or initiative may be eligible for a grant or to find out more information, please visit http://ourneighbourhood.com.au/grants/community-grants.html.Related LinksOur Neighbourhood Grantslast_img read more

Online Fundraising Campaign in a Box

first_imgIn addition to your ongoing fundraising, advocacy and communication activities, there are times throughout the year when you need to lead your members through a series of actions. Whether it’s communication-list building, hitting a fundraising target to support a new program or structure, or gathering support for a community initiative (to name a few possibilities), you’ll get the most bang for your buck by conducting a targeted fundraising campaign. We’ve put together a step by step guide to the outreach,tracking, follow-up and other activities necessary to reach your goals. Download the free guide: Fundraising Campaign in a Boxlast_img

Maternal Health Commodities: Looking Beyond Medicines

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on August 16, 2012October 12, 2016Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)This post is part of a blog series on maternal health commodities. To view the entire series, click here.Written by: the Fistula Care team at EngenderHealth.The UN Commission on Life-Saving Commodities is working to improve access to essential but overlooked maternal health medicines, such as oxytocin, misoprostol, and magnesium sulfate. This is welcomed, wonderful news: Proper access to these drugs will save the lives of many women every year. As we consider how to improve mothers’ health worldwide, however, we must recognize that life-saving medicines are only a part of the story. Facilities require equipment and supplies to save lives, too.On the USAID-funded Fistula Care project, we at EngenderHealth have given some thought to the essential obstetric equipment that hospitals should have on hand. As it turns out, very little on our equipment list is exclusively for genital fistula repair surgery. The same retractors, specula, scissors, scalpels, and forceps can largely be used not only to repair fistula, but also to enable health providers to carry out cesarean sections, laparotomy and other surgeries. That is, the same tools that enable trained surgeons to repair fistula can also allow hospital staff to provide the comprehensive emergency obstetric care that will prevent fistula – not to mention maternal deaths.Equipment requirements go beyond surgical kits: Autoclaves, operating tables, and appropriate lighting can improve care hospital-wide. All equipment – both large and small – must be appropriately maintained and, when necessary, repaired. Ensuring local capacity for maintenance and repair is therefore essential.A functioning surgical service also needs supplies – items like gloves, disinfectant, gauze, and sutures that will naturally be used up and need replenishing. These items share the supply chain needs of the essential medicines, and it follows logically that improving access to lifesaving drugs could efficiently translate into systems able to maintain and appropriately distribute necessary consumables, too.Costing of consumables for maternal health is acknowledged as an issue that has not received sufficient attention. Our recent cost study assessed the average consumption of supplies related specifically to fistula surgery. Just like our equipment list, most consumables for fistula repair overlap with those required for emergency obstetric care.Can the UN commission include equipment and consumables among its concerns? Perhaps not, since its specific focus is central to its success. Nevertheless, all players in the maternal health field would do well to keep in mind that lifesaving medicines are just part of the story. Properly maintained, functional equipment and appropriate consumables also save lives.Learn more about the Fistula Care project here.Share this:last_img read more

Free Maternity Services in Kenya: Do They Include Respectful Maternity Care?

first_imgPosted on December 13, 2013November 7, 2016By: Nora Miller, Research Assistant, Respectful Maternity Care program, Women and Health InitiativeClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Unlike many of its neighboring countries, where progress has been made toward the MDG 5 target of increasing the proportion of births with a skilled birth attendant (SBA), Kenya has struggled. In fact, the country experienced a reduction in the percent of births attended by SBAs: from 50% in 1989 to 44% in 2010. This has contributed to an excessively high maternal mortality ratio of 488 deaths per 100,000 live births, leaving it off track  to meet MDG 5 by the  2015 deadline.In an effort to address this issue, the newly elected Jubilee Government included the promise of free maternity services at public facilities in its 2013 campaign and officially abolished user fees in June of this year.  While there has been much celebration of the free maternity services policy and the historic gains made for women’s rights in general, many members of civil society and the public at large have expressed skepticism about the impact this will have on reducing maternal mortality, and anecdotal evidence suggests mothers have avoided the free maternity services fearing that quality of care will decrease.Even though the new policy removes an important financial burden, it does not fully address the numerous deterrents to receiving care that women must overcome in order to access services. In addition to known geographic, financial and cultural barriers, research conducted by the Kenyan Federation of Women Lawyers, Family Care International and the Population Council has shown that disrespectful and abusive care from providers serves as a major deterrent to the decision to deliver in health facilities in Kenya. These studies show that many women choose to deliver at home because they fear the inhumane treatment they may experience if they go to the hospital. Under the new policy, respectful maternity care remains a concern, as women who access the free services may risk be subjected to humiliating or degrading treatment by health care providers and hospital staff.The new policy does not  account for measures necessary to accommodate the expected increase in demand: additional investments are needed to increase  the number of facilities or expand existing facilities’ capacity; ensure availability of supplies and equipment; and train health workers to provide respectful maternity care. Additionally, the policy does little to address the persistent shortage in human resources for health—an issue that has recently been compounded by a health worker strike.In short, removing user fees plays a key role in reducing financial barriers, but does not ensure that women will make the decision to deliver in health facilities, with assistance from SBAs, nor  guarantee that the care they receive will be delivered with respect.Kenya’s 2010 Constitution provides for human dignity and the right to life. In providing free maternity services, the Jubilee Government has taken laudable steps towards protecting women’s right to health and in ensuring that financial barriers will not prevent women from accessing care in facilities. However, much more remains to be done to guarantee the Constitution’s claim of the right to human dignity, especially with regard to women’s  experience of childbirth in health facilities.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

3 Reasons Your Grantmaking Strategy May Not Be Working

first_imgPictured Here: Central Alabama Community Foundation – what they’re doing is working.It’s understandable. Programs, not payroll nor paperclips, create excitement and enthusiasm among your board, grant committee, and community when it comes to awarding grants. However, if you are in the philanthropy business, you are in the capacity-building business. We can’t create the type of long-term, lasting change we seek without strong organizations. As grantmakers, we’re dependent on nonprofit leaders that can sustain and scale their impact without applying for more grant dollars.To borrow an example from our for-profit friends, have you ever seen the show “Shark Tank” on ABC?If so, you know that the first questions asked after the entrepreneur’s pitch will be, “What are your sales for the last year?” and “How much do you plan to sell this year?”The sharks dig into the company’s ability to effectively market, sell and scale their product, before digging into its competitive advantages or how it’s manufactured.The sharks know that investing in sales and marketing isn’t a separate strategy. It’s an integral part of their investment strategy. More precisely, it’s the path to their return.I have never met an investor that restricts their funds from sales and marketing. That would be foolish. Investors (funders) depend on a company’s revenue growth, increased profits and sales multipliers to create a return on their investment (impact).In the same way, nonprofit capacity and sustainability are not separate or standalone strategies. They are critical components of all grants and to ensuring our philanthropy creates long-term, lasting impact.Yet, we reverse this order all the time. We ask the nonprofit about its programs, outcomes, and impact, and then maybe (not always) we’ll dive into a sustainability plan.Now, you may be thinking, why don’t we just fund sustainable nonprofits and stop this article here? We can just reject nonprofits that need to build their capacity, right?Well, we wouldn’t have many eligible applicants. According to Network for Good’s 2017 research across 10,000 nonprofits, the overwhelming majority heavily relied on single‐source funding.A startling 78 percent of nonprofits applying for grants have no written or specific fundraising plan to sustain their program, after the grant period (on the other hand, 85 percent view their funders as credible, go-to sources for technical fundraising assistance). Further, according to a new report released by GuideStar, approximately 50 percent of U.S. nonprofits are operating with less than one month’s cash reserves.Therefore, if we want to create long-term change and lasting good, we must stop referring to the capacity building as a standalone strategy. We must view it as part of a comprehensive, holistic strategy – as being implemented by the Central Alabama Community Foundation.[CLICK TO WATCH VIDEO]Nonprofits Must Respond to Emerging Needs, Not Live by ContractsDo you believe the environmental challenges we face today are the same as 50 years ago? Do you believe child development and education is unaffected by the growth in social media?As our communities’ complex challenges evolve, we must ensure that the nonprofits we fund have the resources they need to stay nimble and responsive.Nonprofit leaders operating with razor-thin margins, no process to measure success or retain talent will be caught flat-footed during times of emerging needs or a shifting landscape.So, practically speaking, what can you do?As part of The Walton Family Foundation’s Environment Grant reports, nonprofits are asked, “What notable obstacles did you face during this grant period?” as well as, “What changes to the project were made?”The program staff is interested in knowing how work plans, staffing, and timelines may shift throughout the grant period. This enables them to coach the grantee on navigating unforeseen challenges, re-allocating funds from the original proposal or calling in additional support, instead of using the report to rigidly enforce grant contracts.What would happen if you asked your grantees these questions in your reports?Short-Term Strategies Don’t Fix Long-Term ChallengesDo you believe that racism has been wholly eradicated? Do you feel all Americans have affordable health care? No, of course not. These issues are multifaceted and will, undoubtedly, continue to evolve in the foreseeable future.If we wish to confront longstanding issues plaguing our communities, grant strategies must be designed with the long-term in mind. However, grant funding is inherently short-term in nature (do you know any funders that make 10-year commitments through an annual grant cycle?).Yet, how often do we measure outcomes created 10 years after the grant period ends? Do we know if those dollars are creating the same impact today? Has the program declined?Hopefully not.Shifting to multi-year commitments is not sufficient. We must ensure with greater certainty that our grantees have the capacity to self-fund their programs, long after the grant period.So, practically speaking, what can you do?The YouthBridge Community Foundation is an emergent, three-staff member foundation in St. Louis, Mo. The foundation’s CEO, Michael Howard, regularly educates YouthBridge donors and donor-advised fundholders on how to make gift decisions with the long-term in mind.“You’ve proven your commitment to lasting good and meaningful change,” was the headline phrase from a recent newsletter, educating stakeholders on why the foundation is building the capacity of local nonprofits. This education is enabling YouthBridge to increase their investment in the fundraising capacity of nonprofits serving children and youth in the St. Louis area.Do your board members and donors understand the importance of nonprofit sustainability? How might you educate them in your next communication?Community Needs Outweigh Grantmaking BudgetsWill you be able to fund 100 percent of the letters of inquiry or grant applications you receive this year?Most likely not.This is where we derive the phrase, “competitive grantmaking.” Grantmaking is competitive because needs (generally) always outweigh grant dollars available.Because grantmaking is a zero-sum game (a dollar here can’t be invested there) we need to measure the “impact-per-dollar” of each grant. We must ask ourselves, “Will we create more outcomes if we invest a dollar into this program or that one?”To expand this metric with confidence, grantmakers should pair grant dollars with an investment in an organization’s fundraising capacity. Network for Good has found that, on average, every $1 invested into a nonprofit’s fundraising capacity produces $10 in the program or general operating funding. These are dollars that can be used to amplify and expand the nonprofit’s impact—without tying up additional grant dollars from the funder.So, practically speaking, what can you do?The Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation recently revamped its annual grants process to provide community impact staff with greater depth and insight into the applicant’s strengths and weaknesses.During this process, nonprofits are asked to express any concerns about their ability to financially sustain their programs, and some even take a comprehensive assessment. For a group that identifies fundraising as a core challenge, a micro-grant for fundraising services is bundled into their award, ensuring that the organization not only diversifies revenue but also increases the impact of each grant dollar over time.Have you considered bundling a micro-grant for fundraising capacity alongside a restricted or program grant? Could you pilot this concept with a handful of your grantees?Please comment.  We would like to hear from you.last_img read more

6 Successful Major Donor Outreach Activities

first_imgMajor donors need to be cultivated one at a time. A major gifts program takes time and commitment. The reality is that a small number of donors have the potential to make up a large part of your overall giving total. Reaching out to this group of donors will pay off. Cultivating relationships with major donors and identifying opportunities for them to give will have a dramatic (and positive) impact on your organization’s long-term stability, and more important, advance your mission.Each major donor has their own reasons for giving to your organization. They also have individual preferences about personal attention and connectivity. Mix-and-match these outreach activities—and create some of your own—to steward your major donors and reap the benefits.How Will You Connect With Major Donors?Individual MeetingsFace-to-face meetings are always the most valuable way to build meaningful relationships. Schedule lunch dates between major donors and your executive director for that extra-special touch.Group MeetingsInvite donors and prospects to the home or club of a peer leader; ideally, someone who is already a major donor. Use this time to have donors talk about their support of your nonprofit, take the temperature of potential donors, and note what programs they are most interested in.Gift AnniversariesSaying thank you is a comfortable reason to reach out, and it gives you an opportunity to request a face-to-face meeting.BirthdaysSame as gift anniversaries, this event offers another opportunity to thank donors for their support.Special EventsBe sure to invite those on your major gift prospect list to appropriate events where you can engage them in conversations that may organically lead to follow-up meetings.Donor Stewardship EventsTake advantage of events built into your annual calendar. Invite your top prospects to mingle with your best donors and let them feel the enthusiasm in the room.You know your donor’s likes and interests. Fit your engagement efforts to match their tastes, and you’ll see your relationship deepen over time.Download our eGuide, “How To Enhance Your Donor Engagement,” for more on how to engage your donors.last_img read more

7 Best Practices for Donor Thank You Emails

first_imgWe all know that saying thank you is good etiquette. Timely thank yous for donor gifts are expected, as they should be. With just a little extra thought, your thank yous can make a meaningful impact and truly delight donors. And there’s no time like the new year to refine your donor thank you process. Let’s explore seven best practices for creating donor thank yous that generate warmth and a sense of teamwork.1) Say Thank You Within a Week of Receiving a GiftInclude a simple “Thank you for your donation!” with your gift receipt, followed by a more detailed thank you letter or email. If you can, send your thank you within 24 hours of receiving the donation, but definitely within one week of receiving a gift. Whether your first detailed thank you comes in the form of a snail mail letter or an email will depend on how your donors prefer to receive communications. Either way, don’t delay sending this thank you, or you’ll risk donors feeling unappreciated.2) Send From a Recognizable NameYou don’t want donors to miss your email because it gets mistaken for spam. Send your emails from a recognizable member of your staff, such as your executive or development director. You can set this name in the email blast templates in your donor management system so thank yous will always come from the same person. This way, donors will be able to identify the email as yours. Plus, sending from someone higher up in the organization will also make donors feel valued.3) Make Your Subject Line SpecificLet donors know even before opening the email that you’re communicating gratitude. Including words like “thank you,” “grateful,” or “gratitude” in the subject line lets donors immediately identify the email as an expression of thanks. This will also help your thank yous stand out from the other emails you send your supporters.4) Keep the Focus on the DonorKeep the attention on the donors and their gifts, rather than focusing on your organization. Donors should feel they are an integral part of your team, not just a source of money. Use “you” and “your” frequently, and make sure that you always include your donor in any “we” statements.5) Acknowledge Previous GiftsLet regular donors know that you haven’t forgotten previous gifts. Include a brief line mentioning donations given in the past and that you value their ongoing partnership. This will make your thank you more personal and cause donors to feel like a true member of your team.6) Share the Impact of the GiftThank yous should be inspirational, giving donors a feeling of accomplishment. For thank yous sent immediately after a donation is given, remind the donor what’s planned for their gift. After the project or campaign is finished, share the results of how you used the gift. Although the work is never done, taking time to celebrate the impact that the donor’s gift made is motivational and may even result in another gift. Tell an impact story or include a testimonial from a community member.7) Say Thank You More Than OnceIt’s nearly impossible to say thank you too much. Donors will especially value thank yous sent on the anniversary of a large or first gift, on meaningful holidays, after a vital year-end campaign, and along with project updates.Thank yous are one of the most important communications your organization sends to donors. They can make donors feel a part of your team and part of the important work you’re accomplishing together. They can also inspire donors and motivate them to continue their support.Want more ideas on how to create meaningful thank yous? Read 10 Creative Ways to Thank Donors to learn what makes a thank you effective, what to avoid in a thank you, and when to say thank you.Read more on The Nonprofit Bloglast_img read more

Digital Fundraising and the Modern Donor

first_imgThe modern fundraising landscape has gone digital and there’s no going back. If you want to stay relevant, you need to keep up. Technology has changed the face of our daily interactions and engagement. Social media and text messaging offer instant connection. Smartphones allow you to make calls, check email, play music, download apps, and more. Fitbits track our health and fitness patterns. All of this leads to greater personalization; experiences tailored to the individual. Netflix sends “Top Suggestion” emails based on viewing history. Amazon recommends items based on recent searches. Donors are looking for similarly unique experiences from the nonprofits they support. Whether you’re new to digital fundraising or a seasoned pro, embracing the digital revolution will add value to your donor relationships and boost engagement levels. But, how to create accessibility and transparency in the digital age? The answer’s at your fingertips. Use digital tools—your website, social media, email blasts, online advertising—to engage donors. To learn more, download Fundraising in the Digital Age. Keep reading for a sneak peek into the guide.What Modern Donors WantThe modern donor wants more access to your organization. Share frequent updates about your work and the impact of their gifts. Donors are much more likely to make a second gift if they receive a personalized communication detailing the influence of their support.Digital fundraising is also a great opportunity for your nonprofit to be discovered online. Harness the power of search engine optimization (SEO) to improve your positioning in search engine results. This will allow your website to increase awareness of your mission and attract new donors.Creating a donor-centric experience puts donors at the heart of everything you do and say. Use this approach online as well as in person. Solicit your donor’s opinion, create new ways for them to connect with you, and watch their loyalty grow.Gone are the days of passive donors who write a check and disappear. Today’s donors want to be actively included in your work. Thanks to your digital toolkit and technology such as Network for Good’s donor management system, there’s no reason not to give them the experience they crave. Read more on The Nonprofit Bloglast_img read more

Exploring Maternal and Child Health Among Sex Workers and Their Children

first_imgPosted on December 14, 2016January 6, 2017By: Sarah Hodin, Project Coordinator II, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Last week, the Women and Health Initiative at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health welcomed Saki Onda to speak about a vulnerable, understudied population: female sex workers (FSWs) and their children. Much of the global health research and programming efforts thus far have focused primarily on the prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and HIV in particular, among this population. The HIV infection risk is approximately thirteen times higher among FSWs compared to the general population. A number of factors put sex workers at greater risk of contracting STIs, including a lack of access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health education and increased exposure to violence.The issue of maternal mortality and morbidity among FSWs has been widely neglected in the public health literature. Along with colleagues Brian Willis and Hanni Marie Stoklosa, Saki recently published an article in BMC Public Health titled, “Causes of maternal and child mortality among Cambodian sex workers and their children: A cross sectional study.” The researchers interviewed 271 FSWs in Cambodia to explore the causes of maternal and child deaths. This was the first study examining these outcomes among sex workers.The authors found distinct differences between the causes of maternal mortality among FSWs compared to non-FSWs: While postpartum hemorrhage and pre-eclampsia were the most common causes of maternal deaths in the general population, complications from abortion were the leading cause of maternal death among FSWs. The most common causes of death for children under 5 were HIV and infection among FSWs compared to prematurity and acute lower respiratory tract infections in the general population. While the results cannot be generalized because of the study design’s limitations, these preliminary findings warrant further investigation in different global settings using more robust methodology.The FSWs who participated in the study reported experiences of disrespect and abuse from healthcare workers. One woman in Paraguay explained, “The majority of sex workers do not want to go for antenatal care because doctors do not treat them well because they are sex workers.” A woman in Uganda told the researchers that a nurse once told her, “You prostitutes go aside and we will treat the respectable people.” Especially in settings where sex work is illegal, FSWs may fear seeking care and disclosing their occupation to providers.Given the vulnerability of FSWs and their children, increased global efforts to understand and address their sexual, reproductive and maternal health needs are critical. According to Saki, these efforts should involve a rights-based, evidence-informed approach, community engagement, comprehensive health services and a focus on ending stigma and discrimination.—Explore resources on maternal health, HIV and AIDS.Are you working on a project related to the health of female sex workers? Tell us about it!Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

Panamas New Locks Host Second 14000 TEU Boxship in a Week

first_imgFor the second time in one week, the Panama Canal’s expanded waterway welcomed a container vessel with a total TEU allowance (TTA) of 14,863.The vessel CMA CGM J. Adams matched the capacity of the CMA CGM Theodore Roosevelt, which established a new record as the largest capacity container vessel on August 22 with the same mark of 14,863 TTA.“Both transits over a period of seven days are further evidence of the impact of the Expanded Panama Canal to world maritime trade,” Jorge L. Quijano, Panama Canal Administrator, said.The two ships are deployed on the new OCEAN Alliance’s weekly South Atlantic Express (SAX) service, which connects Asia and US East Coast ports via the Panama Canal.The SAX service is composed of 11 vessels ranging in size from 11,000 to 14,000 TEUs, including vessels which also transited the expanded Canal earlier in May becoming the largest capacity ships to do so at the time.Image Courtesy: Panama Canallast_img read more