Posts tagged to 'Giving interests and identity'

The best mistake we ever made: Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation

Posted by Kathleen Odne , Karen Green and Jenifer Getz on October 28, 2015

A sure-fire indicator that we all make mistakes was the capacity crowd at the National Forum on Family Philanthropy workshop in Seattle entitled, “The Best Mistakes We Ever Made.” Using a rapid-fire format, each of ten speakers took three minutes to share a mistake they made in their family philanthropy experience. To set the context, each speaker explained the goal and framework by responding to, “What were you trying to do”? Next they explained, “What happened that was unexpected – in other words, what went wrong?” Finally, and most importantly, we asked the mistake-makers to share, “What did you learn from your mistake?” In other words, how did the foundation changes its practices as a result?

Grace, Gratitude and Generosity

Posted by Virginia Esposito on September 24, 2015

One of my favorite NCFP publication titles, Grace, Gratitude and Generosity, was used for our Faith and Family Philanthropy journal more than a dozen years ago. When we used it, inspired by one of the Journal’s authors, I felt it had meaning far beyond that one publication; I still do today.

Can't Not Do: The Social Drive That Changes the World

Posted by Paul Shoemaker on September 24, 2015

"I can’t not do this. It’s not that I can do this, it’s that I can’t not. I don’t have time to not make an impact. I could not imagine not..." I don’t remember the first time I heard someone use one of these grammatically incorrect phrases. But I hear these statements consistently, to this day, from educated and literate people. I know you have heard of “can-do” people, they are eager and willing, we admire them and hope our children become like them when they grow up. But the regular heroes you will meet in this book go way beyond can-do, they can’t not do.

Expanding your comfort zone: Managing risk

Posted by John Bare on September 24, 2015

As I sit here writing about risk, the date at the bottom of my laptop screen – September 11 – is a jarring reminder that risk analysis is both futile and indispensable. It’s futile if we use risk analysis to predict the future. Or come to believe that the act of reflection itself inoculates us against harm. So goes the temptation: Now that we have completed this risk analysis, what could go wrong?

Leveraging social sector leadership: Opportunities for family philanthropy

Posted by Lori Bartczak and Nora Silver on September 24, 2015

While the connection between strong leadership and effective organizations may seem obvious, navigating the variety of ways grantmakers can support leadership can seem overwhelming. In GEO’s recent publication, Leveraging Social Sector Leadership, the authors present research that lifts up what social sector leaders say they need to be successful and how grantmakers can support those needs.

Planning for an influx of assets

Posted by Elaine Gast Fawcett on August 25, 2015

An influx of assets is a powerful transition point in your family’s philanthropy. With rising resources comes the budding potential to do more of what you’re already doing – or, perhaps, to try something new. Either way, additional resources will often provide your foundation with new options for making a difference according to your foundation’s mission.

A journey with young philanthropists from the Andrus family: Working with the next gen to animate the principles of social justice

Posted by Alyson Wise on August 25, 2015

On a sunny summer Saturday morning, seven college-aged youth trickled into a collaboration space at the offices of the Surdna Foundation and the Andrus Family Fund to commence the yearlong Board Executives in Training Program (BETS). The organization’s commitment to this work was a long-standing pursuit of the Andrus Family Philanthropy Program (AFPP); for almost fifteen years, it had implemented innovative, inclusive, and flexible programing to engage family members of all ages and interests to get involved in the family’s philanthropies and in public service. BETS itself, had been facilitated previously for four cohorts of youth interested in learning more about the sector and the family legacy.

Narrow and Deep

Posted by Jay Ruderman on June 25, 2015

I was once told that “when you’ve seen one foundation, you’ve seen one foundation.” Every foundation, public or private, is different. Each foundation is passionate about the issues they support but the way they “do business” differs vastly. Some foundations solicit applications, distribute funds and this is the extent of their involvement. Others are very private about their funding while some are very public. Since I became President of the Ruderman Family Foundation, I have pursued a path of going “narrow and deep” for the main issue we advocate for: the inclusion of people with disabilities in our society. Twenty percent of the U.S. population has some form of disability and it’s the only minority group almost all of us are guaranteed of joining at some point in our lives...

Why is it important to have an internal mission that is separate and distinct from an external mission?

This month we are delighted to feature a question recently asked in our May webinar, Balancing internal vs. external missions in family philanthropy. This in-depth conversation on successful strategies for thoughtfully defining, measuring, and tracking both internal and external missions in family foundation features Julie Fisher Cummings and Doug Bitonti Stewart from the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Foundation and Linda Tracy from the Tracy Family Foundation.

Giving to Nepal Earthquake Response? Take Three Long Breaths

Posted by Karen Keating Ansara on May 27, 2015

With today’s news of the horrific Nepal earthquake I am driven to take immediate action — to make an on-line donation or wire money to friends of friends in the dust-choked streets of Kathmandu and green pinnacles of rural Nepal. I am consumed with the grief of my many Nepali friends who are like family to me. But my experience of the Haiti earthquake response via the Haiti Fund at the Boston Foundation has taught me one paramount lesson: TAKE A BREATH. Unless I am physically on the scene, I imagine my Nepali friends with their contemplative souls would agree. Take a breath and assess...

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