Nonprofit news roundup, 03.01.13

O’Brien joins Mary Duke Biddle Foundation as executive director

Mimi O’Brien, former assistant vice president for corporate and foundation relations at Duke University, has joined the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation in Durham as executive director.

She succeeds Douglas Zinn, who served as the executive director for over 30 years and has been named to the new job of assistant executive director at the William R. Kenan Jr. Charitable Trust in Chapel Hill.

O’Brien served as director of corporate and foundation relations at Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, N.C., before joining the Office of University Development at Duke in 1991. After several advancements, she was named assistant vice president of corporate and foundation relations in 2008.

As part of her work at Duke, Mimi staffed the Josiah Charles Memorial Trent Foundation, first as assistant director from 1991 to 1997, and then as executive director from 1997 to 2012.

The Trent Foundation was started by the late Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans and her late husband, Dr. James H. Semans, in 1977 in honor of Mrs. Semans’ first husband, Dr. Josiah Charles Trent, who died in 1948.

The Trent Foundation supports Duke University faculty and staff projects related to human sexual function research; medical history, ethics, and humanities; and international studies.

SECU Foundation funds new rural internship program

The State Employees’ Credit Union Foundation is partnering with the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center, funding the new SECU Public Service Intern program for college students from rural North Carolina.

The 2013 Summer Intern program will award 35 paid internships to rising sophomores or juniors from North Carolina universities or community colleges who will be able to explore possible careers in their home communities or regions through a four-week summer internship in their local county government.

The member-funded SECU Foundation will contribute $7,500 per intern for costs associated with the program, with a total cost of $262,500.

Wake Nurse-Family Partnership turns four

Since it was formed in 2008, the Nurse-Family Partnership of Wake County has served 251 families and 205 new babies.

The program, which pairs eligible first-time mothers with a registered nurse from pregnancy until the child turns two, provides in-home visits, with nurses working with mothers to achieve improve maternal health, promote healthy child development, and improve the family’s economic self-sufficiency of the family.

The Wake County program is part of a statewide network that includes 11 sites serving 17 counties supported by a public-private partnership that includes The Duke Endowment, the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Division of Public Health, the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, The North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc. and Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina.

Students with disabilities get hospital internships

High school seniors with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the Guilford County Schools are gaining work experience at High Point Regional Health System as part of the National Project SEARCH program.

In addition to the hospital and school system, partners in the collaborative community partnership include the TEACCH at UNC-Greensboro and The Guilford Center, which is providing start-up funds for the first year.

Lincoln Financial also awarded a $20,000 grant to assist with program costs the first year.

Project SEARCH is an unpaid internship program for students with disabilities that focuses on building employability skills through internships in local businesses to obtain competitive community-based employment.

The High Point Regional effort is the first Autism-specific program in North Carolina.

Four students selected for the first year will take part in three 10-week internship rotations within various departments at High Point Regional through June 28, 2013.

Students are instructed by a Guilford County Schools instructors, with job coaches providing onsite training through the TEACCH Center at UNC-Greensboro.

The TEACCH Center serves individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders in the Piedmont region. Services include diagnostic evaluations, treatment planning and implementation, education, consultation, supported employment assistance, training opportunities and research.

HandyCapable providing laptops to Guilford County students

HandyCapable Network in Greensboro will provide 30 refurbished laptop computers to  seniors at Smith, Dudley and Page Greensboro high schools, thanks to a $10,000 grant from Tannenbaum-Sternberger Foundation. The laptops were donated to HandyCapable by local businesses, and each has been completely refurbished by Handy Techs, adult volunteers with physical and developmental disabilities.

High Point University gets $2 million

Elizabeth Aldridge of Archdale, a member of the board of trustees at High Point University, has committed $2 million to the university as an unrestricted gift. The university will name the Village residential facility, a complex of three buildings that house 655 students, for Aldridge and her late husband, William.

John Avery Boys & Girls Club launches $1 million drive

The John Avery Boys & Girls Club in Durham has kicked off its annual campaign, aiming to raise at least $1 million. The agency serves over 780 children a year through after-school and summer camp programs.

BJH Foundation for Senior Services

Applications for 2013 grants from the BJH Foundation for Senior Services in Greensboro grant applications are available on its website at Over the past 6 year, the Foundation has awarded 121 grants totaling over $1.2  million, including 19 grants last year totaling over $150,000, to nonprofits serving Jewish seniors in the Carolinas through enrichment, training, fellowship and health education programs.

United Way honors Alamance Regional

Employees at Alamance Regional Medical Center increased giving to United Way of Alamance County by 40 percent during the 2012 campaign, earning the hospital a Spirit of North Carolina Award from United Way of North Carolina. Alamance Regional’s total contribution to United Way of Alamance County was $102,902, marking the first year the hospital’s donation exceeded $100,000.

Discovery Place opens museum in Rockingham

Discovery Place KIDS–Rockingham, a new children’s museum that is part of Charlotte-based Discovery Place, has opened in Rockingham.

High Point Historical Society fundraiser

The High Point Historical Society will celebrate the 1970s and 80s at its annual Leap into History fundraiser on March 9 from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the High Point Museum.

Beach cleanup to benefit from biathlon

SUP Cleanup, an organization that conducts monthly cleanups in surrounding islands and waterways, will benefit from 2013 Wrightsville Beach Biathlon, to be held March 23 at Blockade Runner Beach Resort.

Planned giving conference set for April 30-May 1

The North Carolina Planned Giving Council and South Carolina Planned Giving Council will present their annual planned giving conference April 30 and May 1 at Kanuga in Hendersonville.

Keynote speakers will be Michael Kenyon, president and CEO of the Partnership for Philanthropic Giving, and Bryan Clontz, president of Charitable Solutions.

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