Friday, April 1, 2011

Maryland Nonprofit Consumer Group Gives Progress Report on Energy

Although energy efficent programs have been put into place in Maryland during the past two years, a local Nonprofit Consumer Group still says the state may miss its 2015 energy savings target.  The group, Maryland PIRG Foundation, released the findings in their report Thursday at an energy efficient house in Myersville, MD. 

The report says that by the end of 2010, utility energy savings were on track to meet 46% of the state's 2015 goal, although this is estimated to cost consumers about $1.4 billion.  Over the long run, however, consumers will save about $60 million per year because of these efficency measures, and this number could swell to $900 million over the lifetime of the measures. 

On the negative side, however, the report is critical of the Maryland Public Service Commission, which the nonprofit says delayed implementation of 2008's EmPOWER Maryland Energy Efficiency Act because of "unclear program guidelines and a drawn-out approval process."  The commission has also not yet made a system to evaluate utility programs in a timely manner, which Maryland PIRG says is essential to hold utility companies responsible if they don't meet their goals.

You can read more about Maryland PIRG's energy report at iStock Analyst.

Notre Dame to Hold Nonprofit Networking Event

The University of Notre Dame will be holding a nonprofit career event on April 5th, so if you are interested in learning more about nonprofit jobs, then you should head to this event if you live in the area.  The program, called “Making a Living Making a Difference," will be held in Geddes Hall from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM, and it will give students and locals the chance to learn what it takes to work in the not-for-profit-sector

Speakers at the program include Notre Dame alumni Bill and Nancy Jordan, who will present the keynote speech: "Sustainability in a World of Energy and Food Poverty."  The Jordans are co-founders of Let’s Share the Sun Foundation, which is dedicated to installing solar energy technology in some of the poorest parts of the world in order to enhance the quality of life in those communities.

After the keynote speech, there will be an Informational Fair at 7:30 PM in the Geddes Hall coffee house meeting area, which will allow attendees to learn about potential nonprofit internships and careers (with both local and national nonprofit organizations).

Interested?  Read about more about the event at Thriving In Michiana, and be sure to read more about nonprofit careers at our Jobs Blog.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Clarksville's Nonprofit Funding Problems

The way the Clarksville, TN City Council handles nonprofit funding is being put under some major changes--though when that will happen is anybody's guess.

As with any chage in governance practices, a new committee has been formed to figure out how the city will handle future funding of Clarksville nonprofits.  So why does there even need to be any changes?  Well, according to the Clarksville Leaf Chronicle, this subject has been a difficult one for the city during the last two years.  In 2010, for example, members of the City Council were frustrated with why they were being asked to fund only certain nonprofits, while leaving others out.  Members also were skeptical if the money they were doling out was going to worthy causes.

During the new committee's initial meeting on Wednesday, it was agreed that a small pecentage of the city's budget would go to non-profits each year.  This is not much differet than previous plans, but this time there is discussion about dividing funding into set percentages for specific charitable functions, such as help for the poor or arts.  The committee's leader, Ward 8 Councilman David Allen, hopes that this move would help mak more competition funding, rather than allowing a small group of nonprofits dominating each year.

Read more about the non-profit funding battle at the Clarksvile Leaf Chronicle.

Online Wine Auction to Benefit Napa County Nonprofits

And who said wine couldn't help nonprofits?

An online auction, known as Napa Valley 360, was recently launched to sell Napa Valley Wine and experiences to bidders who are willing to shell out some cash.  And where is all that cash going to go?  Well, it is going to benefit four nonprofits in Napa County: the St. Helena Family Center, the Calistoga Family Center, Family Service of Napa Valley, and Cope Family Center.  All of these organizations have provided services for the needy, yet the demand for their services have soared by nearly 50% during the past year.  Because of this, these nonprofit are in desperate need for funds so that they can continue to run; hence the need for Napa Valley 360.

Obviously, the main attraction of this auction will be the fine wines available, including a mixed case of St. Helena Appelation wines, Cabernets, and a special Chardonnay produced by a fifth generation Napa Valley family.  However, there are some other unique items available in the auction, such as a Chefs Table dinner for four at La Toque, a flight for two above Napa Valley, a boat ride, and much more.  Interested in this auction?  Read more about it at The Napa Valley Register or visit Napa Valley 360.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Feature Nonproft Jobs Press Release

Here is a recent press release we put out about The Nonprofit Jobseeker...

The NonProfit Times, the leading publication for nonprofit organizations, wants employers to know about an exciting feature on The NonProfit Job Seeker (the publication's online destination for non-profit jobs) that they can use to highlight new jobs at their organizations: Featured Jobs. Once you apply one of the Featured Job options to one of your open positions, that job will be listed on The NonProfit Job Seeker's main page, and will be highlighted in yellow in the search results. This will guarantee that your job is seen by the the industry’s most sought-after talent: passive job seekers.

Passive job seekers are more highly sought after by companies, because this type of worker represents a larger portion of the workforce (83%, according to a recent survey by Yahoo!). Passives are constantly browsing the web for high quality nonprofit positions; but they aren't going to spend hours browsing through the site, they are going to want to know which jobs are the best to apply to. By using Featured Jobs, your company will have a higher chance of attracting these talented workers.
There are two options for Featured Jobs: a 30-day posting at $100, or a 60-day posting at $130. The only difference between these two options are the length of time and the price, so you will be getting the same great service no matter which length of time you choose. For more information on Featured Jobs and The Nonprofit Jobseeker, visit http://www.nonprofitjobseeker.com.
 
About The NonProfit Times: Founded in 1989, The NonProfit Times is one of the leading publications on the nonprofit sector in the United States. The latest issue can always be viewed online at http://www.nptimes.com

Former Director of Kingman Nonproft Agency Gets Probation

Jeanne Mae Caisse, former director of The Kingman Resource Center, was sentenced to probation after pleading guilty to one count of felony theft earlier this morning.  Caisse had been accused of stealing more than $7,000 from the nonprofit organization, which provides services for low-income families; it is funded by other charities in the New York.

Caisse, who was first arrested at Kingman's board meeting last Spring, is just another nonprofit manager who as run into legal trouble lately.  Earlier, we wrote about how Robert Jones, former CEO of the National Center for the Employment of the Disabled, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for fraud in government contracts.  We also wrote about Sheila Kitchens, a nonprofit bookkeeper who was sentenced to three years in jail for computer theft and first-degree forgery.  And of course, there has been legal issues in the past year or so with Larry Jones, former head of Feed the Children.  So when it comes to non profit managers and CEOs, March continues to be an unkind month.

Read the full article on Jeanne Mae Caisse at The Times Union.

Quick Note-Squidoo

Ever heard of Squidoo?  It's a neat little site that allows users to create "lenses," which are basically pages devoted to a specific topic.  So why do we mention this?  Well, we just set up our own Squidoo page, dedicted to Nonprofi Jobs.  It's sort of meant to be a companion page to our Nonprofit Jobs Blog, and it will be updated everday with job tips, links to useful articles/videos about non-profit careers, and more.  Check it out, and be sure to "like" it!

Saginaw Valley State to Offer Nonprofit Management Certificate

Looks like another school is getting on the nonprofit management bandwagon.  I posted earlier that the University of Hawaii was going to offer a certificate in nonprofit management; well, now it looks like Saginaw Valley State is planning to do the same thing.

Anyone who is interested in taking the program, which starts June 1st, can start sending in applications today at the University's official website.  The program, which is made possible by the United Way of Saginaw, is designed for upper level employees at nonprofit organizations.  It looks like this certificate will help these individuals get through the often tricky world of non profit management by offering courses that cover the following areas:

  • Leadership
  • Evaluation
  • Governance
  • Financial management
  • Information technology
  • Fund development
  • Human resources
These are just some of the topics covered, of course.  Want to know more?  Read the full article at MLive.

Hope Chidren's Home: Insight on a Florida Nonprofit

Carrollwood Patch has just put up a pretty insightful interview with Jason Roberts, outreach coordinator for Hope Children's Home, a nonprofit in Carrollwood.  The organization, which was founded in 1968, offers residence to about 65 children who have been abused or have gone through other terrible life incidents.  Roberts says that while it may not be possible to replace traditional homes for children, he believes that it's the next best things for them. 

So right now, you may be thinking this just sounds like a foster home; what, exactly makes it different?  Well for one thing, Hope Children's Home places a big emphasis on siblings.  This means that unlike most foster homes, brother/sisters are not split up.  Another big difference?  They do not take any state or federal money which means, as Roberts says, they "are not a burden on the tax payers."  They are able to stay afloat, like most nonprofits, with the help of donations from locals. 

And now for a little history lesson: as I mentioned, Hope Children's Home was founded in 1968 by Dr. Ron Schaffer and Lindy McGowan after they saw how many children were being abandoned and neglected in their area.  Children at the Home are taught to be reliant on the teachings of Jesus Christ, and are given the care and loving they were always denied.

Interested in donating to Hope Children's Home?  Visit their website and be sure to read the full interview with Jason Roberts at Patch.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Local Resident Tapped to Lead Virginia-Highlands Nonprofit

According to a recent report from Virginia-Highland Patch, the Clear Air Campaign has hired a local resident as an Employer Services Manager.  The resident, Tom Tomaka, will be working with Georgia-based companies to build more commuter and rideshare programs.  In fact, that is one of the main goals of the Clear Air Campaign: to help commuters find travel alternatives so that there is less traffic congestion and overall better air quality.  Already, the nonprofit organization works with over 1,600 companies to help achieve this goal, so Tomaka will be in charge of growing this number even further.

Want to read more about this story?  Head on over to Virginia-Highland Patch.

The Nonprofit Job Search: A New Resource

It's been up for a few weeks now, but we wanted to let our readers know about a blog that The NonProfit Times launched called Nonprofit Jobs.  As the title might suggest, this is a blog dedicated to helping job seekers fufill their goal of getting into the nonprofit sector.  It contains helpful articles about how to conquer some of the more difficult aspects of the nonprofit job search, as well as links to other expert opinions on the subject.

Be sure to check it out everyday; a new article is posted every weekday!

Modesto Non-Profit Needs Volunteers

This is a fairly quick post, but it's also a very important one if you live in the Modesto, CA area.  Inter-Faith Ministries, a California nonprofit organization that helps people in need, is in need of volunteers for their various food and clothing donation drive.  If you are interested in doing some non profit volunteer work, you should go to their headquarters on April 16th for a volunteer orientation.

In other Inter-Faith Ministries news, the organization will be holding a sale from April 8-9, and needs donations of clothes and furniture.  Items can be donated to the organization Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Also, Inter-Faith has begun a milk and education program for families with children ages 5 to 18.  Interested?  There will be an informational meeting on April 4, also held at Inter-Faith's headquarters, which is at 120 Kerr Ave. For more information read the full article from the Sacramento Bee.

Monday, March 28, 2011

More About Nonprofits and the Recession

The other day, we posted a story about how the recession impacted nonprofits.  Today, we wanted to follow up on that story a little bit.  Over the weekend, The Charleston Post Courier posted a story about some local nonprofits that have either succeeded or faltered during the Great Recession.  It's a pretty fascinating read, to say the least.

The story starts with information about Florence Crittenton Programs, an NPO dedicated to helping poor mothers in South Carolina.  The director there, Lisa Belton, had to start working for 30% less than the previous director made because donations were fading because of the country's economic plight.  As she explains, she made a personal sacrifice to help an organization she cares so deeply for.

Yet the story provides an interesting contrast by describing how Goodwill Industries of Lower South Carolina fared.  Located just a few miles from Florence Crittenton, this nonprofit organization was on the opposite end of the spectrum.  During the same period that saw Forence Crittenton Programs suffer, Good Will Industries flourished, posting double-digit revenue increases.  In fact, the organization did so well that in 2009, it gave its president a $31,375 bonus in addition to the $228,417 he already made annually. 

Thus was the story of South Carolina Non-profits (and, really, nonprofits all across the country).  As donors started saving their money instead of donating, organizations had to do more with little.  Some agencies, like Goodwill, managed to harness this better; and some, like Florence Crittenton, did not.  This is not a judgement on either of these organizations, though it probably was a little easier for Goodwill with its large network.  At the same time, however, a local South Carolina food bank, Lowcountry Food Bank, was able to succeed in this environment as well.  By spreading their message of how food was a priority, this NPO was able to raise a lot of money; their revenue rose by nearly $23 million (or 45%) from 2007 and continued during the worst of the recession.

This story is a great read on how differnet NPOs managed to survive (or struggle) through one of the worst economic downturns this country has experienced, and we at The NonProfit Times recommend you read this story in its entirety.