Nonprofit news roundup, 11.30.12

Kate B. Reynolds Trust invests in rural health

The Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust has awarded over $9.5 million to improve the overall health of North Carolinians, with a focus on rural, low-income communities.

That funding includes $1.3 million grant over two years to the North Carolina Foundation for Advanced Health Programs to launch a statewide effort, known as the Chronic Pain Initiative, to address prescription drug overdose.

The Initiative will focus on coordinating efforts in local communities, improving care and prescribing practices for chronic pain patients, and creating supportive systems and policies in clinical sett

The Trust is also investing nearly $700,000 in KaBOOM!-built playgrounds in Halifax, Beaufort and McDowell counties as part of its Healthy Places North Carolina initiative announced earlier this year to invest $100 million in 10 to 15 rural, low-income North Carolina counties over the next 10 years.

And it awarded $261,928 grant to the N.C. Institute of Medicine to develop a North Carolina rural health action plan to help to lay the groundwork for health and health care issues that need to be tackled by the Trust’s Health Care Division over the next 10 years as it focuses a large portion of funding on rural health investments.

Alumni give over $5.8 million to Wake Forest School of Medicine

Fifty-eight current and former leaders of the Medical Alumni Association and their families made a gift of over $5.8 million to Wake Forest School of Medicine with as part of the MAA Challenge, a fundraising effort that has raised nearly $16.4 million since fall 2011. Combined with a gift of over $10.5 million made a year ago by 17 alumni, the latest gift raised the MAA Challenge total to nearly $16.4 million from 75 alumni.

Women’s Fund of Winston-Salem awards grants

The Women’s Fund of Winston-Salem awarded $144,580 in grants to six local nonprofits to address the economic security of women and girls in Forsyth County.

Nonprofits receiving funds include Augustine Project for Literacy of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Crosby Scholars Community Partnership, Empowering Girls in Real Life Situations, Goler Institute for Development and Education, Planned Parenthood Health Systems, and Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools.

In the last five years, The Women’s Fund of Winston-Salem has awarded over $900,000 dollars to local organizations working to improve the lives of women and girls in Forsyth County.

Grants are funded from the pooled contributions of the Fund’s members, who determine each year which organizations receive grant funding.

The Fund’s has over 800 members, including female corporate and nonprofit leaders, educators, community leaders, volunteers, entrepreneurs, and students.

Wake Tech gets $20,000 from Bank of America Foundation

The Bank of America Charitable Foundation has contributed $20,000 to Wake Tech’s major gifts campaign. The funds will expand the bank’s support for students transitioning out of GED and adult high school programs to include graduates of English as a second language programs and high-level graduates of adult basic education programs. Bank of America and the Bank of America Charitable Foundation have contributed nearly $90,000 to the Wake Tech Foundation since 1992, including a $30,000 gift to the GED and adult high school programs last year.

John Avery Boys and Girls Club

The John Avery Boys and Girls Club in Durham has been awarded a $25,000 from PNC for Project Learn, a tutoring and mentoring program aimed at increasing Club members’ academic performance. The agency also named Jesse Boulerice, a Merrill Lynch financial advisor and retired player for the Carolina Hurricanes, to its board of directors.

Community Foundation of Western North Carolina awards $50,000

The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina has made a $50,000 grant to the Friends of the WNC Nature Center to fund interpretive enhancements to the red wolf exhibit and build a covered pavilion.

United Arts Council launching online marketplace

The United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County on Dec. 12 will launch http://www.power2give.org, a new fundraising platform to support arts projects in Wake County. The site will be an online marketplace designed to connect donors with projects they care about. Arts organizations will list needs ranging from $100 to $2,500 for a specific project, such as metronomes for musicians from low income families or costumes for an upcoming production. Visitors to the site will be able to pick a need that and make a donation.

Arts Together

Arts Together in Raleigh has named five recipients of its second annual Arts Together Awards, including Jason Smith, chef proprietor, 18 Seaboard and Cantina 18; Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce; First Citizens Bank; Nikki Dublin-Turner; and Arts Together preschool teachers, past and present. The winners will be honored during an awards dinner on Feb. 28.

Hospice of Wake County

John Thoma, CEO of Hospice of Wake County, has been elected to a 3-year term on the board of directors of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization as a geographic area director for the Southeast Region.

The Volunteer Center of Greensboro

Erin Kennedy, former special events administrator for The American Heart Association, has been named director of programs for The Volunteer Center of Greensboro, and Chris Sifford, former care manager for Partnership for a Drug Free North Carolina, has been named director of volunteers.

NCCJ of the Piedmont Triad

NCCJ of the Piedmont Triad in Greensboro generated a record-high $380,000 in sponsorships and donations and 81,200 guests at its 46th annual Brotherhood/Sisterhood Citation Award Dinner on November at the Greensboro Coliseum Special Events Center. The event, the largest single source of funding for NCCJ’s annual programs and operations, generated about 60 percent of budgeted income for fiscal 2013. Honored at the dinner with the Brotherhood/Sisterhood Citation Award were Zaki Uddin Khalifa, owner of Zaki Oriental Rugs, and Harold L. Martin Sr., chancellor of N.C. A&T State University.

Plow & Hearth

Based on the sale of solar-powered Christmas balls that grew out of homemade ornaments developed in a neighborhood in Greensboro, N.C., Plow & Hearth in Madison, Va., expects to donate over 2,800 seedlings to the National Forest Foundation to be planted in areas where fire, disease or encroaching civilization have threatened natural habitats.

HanesBrands

HanesBrands in Winston-Salem, N.C., donated a trailer load of underwear and socks for distribution to East Coast victims of Hurricane Sandy.

Lowes Foods

Sanderson Farms will donate 7,560 whole chicken fryers to The Second Harvest Food Bank in partnership with Lowes Foods’ Friends Feeding Friends Annual Holiday Food Drive. The donation will be delivered to Food Bank partner agencies in the Carolinas and Virginia. Lowes Foods, which since 1995 has collected over 17 million pounds of food and aims to raise one million pounds of food in 2012, already has raised over 445,000 pounds  with vendor and customer support.

Komen for the Cure

East Coast Wings & Grill in Winston-Salem has given $15,000 to NC Triad affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure from funds raised in October through the sale of pink tortilla chips and salsa in support of breast cancer awareness, as well as pink collapsible koozies.

North Carolina Shakespeare Festival

The North Carolina Shakespeare Festival received a $6,000 grant from the Hayden-Harman Foundation in High Point to fund three performances of the Shakespeare To Go tour in High Point and Alamance County next spring.

The Bridgespan Group

The Bridgespan Group launched a video library, free and available to anyone, that features recorded conversations with over 50 leaders in philanthropy.

Institute for Environment aims to raise money, profile

By Todd Cohen

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — In September, the Institute for the Environment at UNC-Chapel Hill received a 10-year pledge of $285,000 from the parents of a recent graduate, now doing graduate work in Florida on turtles, who credits the Institute with changing her life.

Formed in 1998 as the Carolina Environmental Program, the Institute is counting on its impact in experiential field programs for students, support for students and teachers in the North Carolina public schools, and environmental research to help raise its profile as part of a longer-term fundraising effort it has been planning.

That effort, which would be part of a multi-billion campaign UNC-CH has been planning, likely will be delayed as the university searches for a new chancellor, vice chancellor for university advancement, and provost.

“When the campaign begins, we would like to use it as an opportunity to better position the Institute for the Environment as a leader in this space,” says David Greer, who joined the Institute in January as its first full-time director of development.

Operating with a staff of just over 50 faculty and staff, and an annual budget of $1.8 million, the Institute also receives $4 million to $5 million a year in research funding from federal agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency, its largest funder, which currently is providing a multi-year grant of roughly $20 million.

The Institute facilitates experiential field programs throughout the world, mainly for undergrads.

Roughly 90 students participate in those programs during a school year, with programs ranging from a week-long trip to the Virgin Islands to study coral reef ecology to a semester-long or year-long program to places like Thailand, Ecuador and the U.K.

And in the most recent school year, the Institute placed over 50 undergraduate and graduate students in energy-focused internships.

The Institute last year also conducted professional-development sessions for over 200 teachers in public throughout the state, and provided hands-on enrichment for nearly 400 students, mainly in middle schools and high schools.

And the Institute conducts research, such as an “air model” that is being used in 5,000 locales throughout the world to help governments determine whether they face problems with ozone and air quality.

It also has conducted research coupled with city and regional planning and public health to help communities and regions plan for disasters.

Its director, Larry Band, is an internationally-known watershed hydrologist who has worked to help develop a model for managing the ecological systems of the Chesapeake Bay, known as the best estuarine model in the world, says Greer, former Virginia director of development for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, an advocacy group.

Funds from the campaign could be used to address needs such as scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students, development and training for faculty, and research to address emerging and immediate environmental issues.

“I think it is the responsibility of the great public universities to take on the great public challenges of their time,” Greer says. “The environment and conservation is one of those issues. Some people would say it is the issue.”

Software veteran starting firm targeting smaller nonprofits

By Todd Cohen

Jay Love, who has headed two nonprofit software companies that became industry leaders before being sold to industry giant Blackbaud, is starting a new company that aims to compete with Blackbaud for small and mid-sized nonprofits.

The new company, Bloomerang, is developing software designed to help nonprofits reach, retain and manage their relationships with donors.

Love, who in August joined Avectra as senior vice president, is partnering with the McLean, Va.-based software company on his new venture, which will be based in Indianapolis.

He will continue to lead the nonprofit practice for Avectra, which provides constituent relationship management software for membership-based associations and nonprofits.

Avectra will focus on larger nonprofits while acting as the marketing partner and global reseller of Bloomerang, which will target smaller nonprofits, or those with annual revenue of up to $3 million, and share leads with Avectra for mid-sized nonprofits, or those with annual revenue from $3 million to $10 million.

Love estimates that market represents 95 percent of registered nonprofits in the U.S.

He says he had secured private investment of roughly $2 million for Bloomerang and plans with his investors to own and operate the company for the long-term.

Rob Signorelli, who was chief architect at eTapestry, a company that Love started in 1999 and that was sold to Blackbaud in 2008 for $25 million, will serve as chief technology officer for Bloomerang.

Adrian Sargeant, a fundraising consultant and visiting professor at Indiana University,  is advising Bloomerang and has licensed his research and theories on donor retention and loyalty to the company, Love says.

Many nonprofits lose 40 percent of their donors every year, he says.

The new software, which is being tested in November and December and launched in January, will include a dashboard and will generate reports that feature a rating scale that indicates the “level of engagement” for every name in the client’s database, segments those donors, and suggests actions to increase the retention of donors in each segment.

For a fundraising appeal a Bloomerang client is planning, for example, the software will recommend the nonprofit send a different letter to a long-time donor than the one it sends to a prospective donor.

Sargeant estimates that increasing the retention rate of donors by five percentage points can double the lifetime value of donors in a nonprofit’s database, Love says.

Love’s first nonprofit software company was Master Software, which he served as CEO from 1984 until it was sold to Blackbaud in 1997 for about $11.5 million.

He then served as vice president of sales for Target Software, which with its sister company Target Analysis Group was sold to Blackbaud in 2005 for $60 million.

He next started eTapestry, and most recently served as CEO of Social Solutions, which provides case management software for nonprofits.

Love says Master Software was sold in 1987 to Epsilon Data Management, which without his knowledge sold the company to Blackbaud in 1997.

And he sold eTapestry because his institutional investors wanted a return on their investment, he says.

He and other investors in Bloomerang, he says, are “investing in this for the long term.”

Hospital mergers spawning new philanthropy

By Todd Cohen

HIGH POINT, N.C. — The Triad is poised to get over $100 million in new philanthropic assets, thanks to the pending combination of hospitals in High Point and Alamance County, respectively, with health care systems in Chapel Hill and Greensboro.

As part of its strategic alliance with High Point Regional Health System, UNC Health Care will provide $50 million to establish a new community health fund in High Point.

And as part of its partnership with Alamance Regional Medical Center in Burlington, Cone Health in Greensboro will provide $54 million to establish a new community foundation in Alamance County.

“It’s huge for Alamance County,” says Tracey Grayzer, director of marketing, community relations and development for Alamance Regional Medical Center.

While details of the two mergers still are being worked out and both deals are subject to regulatory approval, the new philanthropies they will create are expected to focus on the broad area of health and on some or all of the geographic regions the High Point and Alamance health systems serve.

Both new philanthropies will be grantmaking entities only and will operate separately from and in addition to both systems’ current foundations, which will continue to raise money to support their local hospitals and patients.

The existing High Point Regional Health System Foundation, for example, will continue to raise funds solely for capital, technology and patient care service needs at High Point Regional Hospital, says Denise M. Potter, vice president of the foundation, public relations and marketing for the system.

That foundation raises $1.5 million to $2 million a year in new income, plus $1.5 million in annual pledge payments, she says.

The existing fundraising foundation at Alamance Regional Medical Center will receive $1 million from Cone Health in addition to the $54 million Cone Health is giving to create the new foundation.

The existing foundation operates just over two-dozen patient funds, spending over $300,000 a year for support for patients, such as for prostheses, wigs for cancer patients, fuel expenses so patients can get to appointments, and rent for cancer patients whose treatment may consume all their income, says Grayzer.

The two new foundations will be the latest in a trend that began in 1973, when the first “health legacy” foundation was formed. Since then, nearly 200 similar foundations have been created throughout the U.S., most of them during the 1980s and 90s, and their ranks keep growing as an increasing number of hospitals and health organizations merge or shift to for-profit status, according to the Foundation Center.

Allen Smart, director of the health care division at the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust in Winston-Salem, says the financial impact of the two new foundations would be significant, increasing the flow of philanthropic funds by roughly $2.5 million a year in each of their communities.

Key decisions still must be made for both new foundations about their geographic reach, funding focus and board makeup, decisions that Smart says will help determine their impact.

Some health legacy foundations, for example, focus on a narrow service area, such as the county in which a merged hospital is located, while others focus on a multi-county region the hospital serves.

And while many health legacy foundations focus on health, others address a broad range of issues such as education, economic development and the arts.

The new foundations also could name to their boards individuals who now serve on the boards of the existing hospital foundations, or they could opt to recruit new board members, a decision that Smart says could influence the initial selection of grantees.

“If the people are primarily associated with the hospitals, that says how open they might be to new thinking or new ideas,” he says.

Whatever the details of their focus and makeup, Smart says, the two new foundations will have a big impact in a state in which he estimates health-related giving from North Carolina foundations, other than hospital-related foundations that raise money for their own hospitals, totals about $100 million a year.

He also expects the merger trend to continue in the state and create more health legacy foundations.

The big wave of health legacy foundations were created from the mid-1980s through about 2000, a period when nonprofit hospitals were purchased by big for-profit chains or merged with other systems.

North Carolina has seen only a few of those health legacy foundations, including The John Rex Endowment in Raleigh and the Cape Fear Memorial Foundation in Wilmington, as well as Triangle North Healthcare Foundation, which was created through the merger of Maria Parham Medical Center in Henderson with Duke LifePoint Healthcare.

Most remaining stand-alone hospitals in North Carolina are nonprofits or publicly owned, Smart says.

“As more get sold to for-profits or other systems, there would be more of this new philanthropy in the state,” he says. “There has been little of this activity in North Carolina. I forecast more.”

Giving remains sluggish, survey says

Slammed by an erosion in giving by individuals, over a third of nonprofits are raising less money this year than last year, a new survey says.

Thirty-seven percent of 500 public charities and public foundations surveyed online in October by GuideStar said contributions fell in the first nine months of 2012, compared to the same period last year, while 34 percent said they grew and 28 percent said they were flat.

Seventy-seven percent of respondents said gifts from individuals were smaller, and 75 percent said fewer individuals gave.

Nonprofits also were hit with rising demand for services, with 38 percent reporting demand grew modestly, and 26 percent reporting it grew greatly.

The pattern for 2012 was similar to 2011, GuildStar said, “suggesting a nonprofit sector where things are not getting much better or much worse, at least from a financial perspective.”

Twenty-nine percent of respondents expect year-end giving will decline compared to last year, while 37 percent expect it to stay flat, and 30 percent expect it to grow.

Forty-two percent of nonprofits surveyed plan to increase their budgets in 2012, while 32 percent will keep them flat, and 24 percent will reduce them.

Thirty-eight percent of nonprofits said freezing salaries is the way to cut budgets, the method cited most often.

Todd Cohen

Nonprofit news roundup, 11.20.12

Children’s Home Society launches drive

Children’s Home Society of North Carolina in Greensboro has launched its 84th annual Little Red Stocking Campaign, with all proceeds going to provide permanent, safe, and loving families for children in need. Proceeds from last year’s campaign helped the agency serve 15,344 children and families, including finding a safe haven for 407 children in foster homes, giving 103 children a permanent family to call their own, assisting 1,139 families with post adoption services, counseling 104 birth parents, and providing educational services to 9,163 teens, professionals, and parents. Over 9,000 children live in foster care in North Carolina and over 2,500 of them are awaiting adoption.

Easter Seals UCP raises $395,000

Easter Seals UCP has raised $395,000 in partnership with Carolinas Medical Center and Levine Children’s Hospital and begun construction on the Charlotte community’s first multi-sensory environment. The 400-square-foot room is slated to open in March 2013 at the Easter Seals UCP Children’s Center at 716 Marsh Road in Charlotte and will be open to the public for children up to age 8 who have trouble processing one or more senses. The new facility will be named for the Yager Group, a $150,000 benefactor.  The campaign was led by Richard Worrell, managing partner at Northwestern Mutual Financial, whose son was born with a rare birth defect that presents him with significant development challenges.

GlaxoSmithKline awards healthcare grants

GlaxoSmithKline made its annual GlaxoSmithKline IMPACT Awards, including $40,000 each, to five healthcare nonprofits in North Carolina and Philadelphia for providing access to healthcare for the underserved in their communities. Recipients include Piedmont Health Services and Sickle Cell Agency, Restoration Place Ministries, The Servant Center, and Triad Health Project, all in Greensboro, and Institute for Safe Families in Philadelphia.

Facebook training

The Triangle Community Foundation and North Carolina Community Foundation are sponsoring a free training session presented by Facebook on social networking for Triangle-area nonprofits on Nov. 27 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in Bay 7 at the American Tobacco Historic District. Registration ends Nov. 21.

Wells Fargo

Team members at Wells Fargo & Company donated $1.1 million to nonprofits and schools throughout the Triad and Western North Carolina as part of the company’s annual one-month Community Support and United Way Campaign, up 17 percent from last year. Team members also contributed 2,400 volunteer hours to nonprofits and other causes in local communities. Companywide, team members donated a record-high $60.5 million to 28,000 nonprofits and schools during the one-month campaign. So far this year, team members have donated $78.9 million to nonprofits, up 23 percent increase from 2011, marking the ninth straight year of double-digit increases in pledge totals.

North Carolina Community Foundation

Recipients in 2012 of a total of $9,600 in grants from the statewide Women’s Fund of the North Carolina Community Foundation include Church on the Rise Peacemakers Family Center in Rocky Mount, $2,000; The Family Violence Prevention Center in Raleigh, $2,000; Sheltered Aid to Families in Wilkesboro, $2,000; Chowan/Perquimans Smart Start Partnership in Edenton, $1,600; My Sister’s House in Rocky Mount, $1,000; and Women of Hope in Wilmington, $1,000. The Women’s Fund focuses on programming that supports women or children, or both, with particular emphasis on women’s health and leadership issues.

Communities in Schools

Kirsten Aleman, who formerly worked for Communities in Schools in Durham, has joined Communities in Schools of North Carolina as READS for Summer Learning Project Manager. The project, which promotes summer reading and aims to improve reading comprehension by providing children in grades 3 to 5 with a wide variety of books, is in its second year and operates in three Cumberland, Durham and Robeson counties.

Triangle Family Services

Triangle Family Services in Raleigh will hold its 10th annual Gingerbread Benefit  on Nov. 29 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at The Umstead Hotel and Spa, with gingerbread houses donated to the agency by local celebrity chefs.

Nonprofit teams with schools on service learning

By Todd Cohen

JAMESTOWN, N.C. — The Guilford Public Schools awarded 531 service-learning diplomas in the school year that ended in June to students who had performed at least 175 hours of volunteering, with all students involved in service-learning last year contributing over 167,000 hours worth an estimated $3.5 million.

Now, the school system is partnering with a Jamestown nonprofit to pilot service-learning clubs in six high schools that will work with students to raise money to finance a three-week trip abroad that will expose them to international service they can use to inform their volunteering at  home.

Brenda Elliott, executive director of student services and character development for the Guilford Public Schools, says the partnership will provide a global perspective for service-learning students who otherwise might never have the opportunity to travel abroad.

The schools’ partner in the global initiative is Dustin’s GreenHouse, a nonprofit created in 2002 by the family of Dustin Green, a graduate of Ragsdale High School who had begun his freshman year at N.C. State University but died after the driver of a Jeep in which he was a passenger ran a red light on campus and was hit by another car.

After he graduated from high School, his parents, Martin and Lou Green, both sales representatives for Oracle Software, treated their son to a three-week backpacking trip in Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, an experience that changed the way he looked at life.

So they created the nonprofit to try to provide similar experiences for underserved and under-recognized high school students in Guilford County.

Operating with an annual budget of roughly $60,000, all of it from fundraising and private donations, the all-volunteer organization has hosted students on trips to Central America, South America, South Africa and Eastern Europe.

Now, Dustin’s GreenHouse has applied for grants from the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro, High Point Community Foundation, and State Farm Youth Advisory Board to support the new pilot program in the Guilford Public Schools, says Martin Green, who serves as volunteer executive director of the nonprofit.

Modeled on a service-learning club it created last year at Grimsley High School in Greensboro that has 35 student members, the nonprofit is talking with other high schools about creating clubs.

The Grimsley club has provided food for homeless people, helped with a house-cleaning for a halfway house for people who are HIV-positive, and volunteered for an autism agency.

And Green took a class at the Center for Creative Leadership that provided training in how to teach leadership skills to students.

To set the stage for creating service-learning clubs, Green is talking to principals about their possible interest in having clubs at their high schools.

At each of the six high schools that participate, Dustin’s GreenHouse will enlist a team of two students and a teacher who then will recruit other students for the clubs, which will begin operating next spring and raising money for a trip abroad next summer.

The clubs also will be developing campaigns for their schools to promote service learning and global awareness, which also is a priority of the public schools.

And they will be learning how to raise money to support service-learning trips abroad.

“It’s a global society and students need to be globally aware,” Green says. “And we need to give students a vehicle to get there.”