Nonprofit news roundup, 12.15.17

Old Salem reschedules holiday events

Old Salem has rescheduled most of the holiday events it cancelled December 8, 9 and 11 after a power outage and server damage in the wake of a snow storm.

The events had been expected to gross about $125,000, including retail sales of up to $57,000 or more a day, but Old Salem does not expect the rescheduled events will recoup all that revenue.

“I’d be surprised if were able to make up that money,” says Franklin Vagnone, president and CEO of Old Salem.

Revenue that Old Salem generates in December is critical to help subsidize school tours throughout the year, he says.

Salem Christmas Festival, which had been scheduled for December 8, has been rescheduled for December 16.

St. Nicholas in Salem and Salem Christmas Festival, which both had been scheduled for December 9, will be held on December 16.

And St. Nick Day, an event that had been scheduled for December 11 for special needs children, will be held December 18.

Candlelight Christmas Tours that had been scheduled for December 8 and were expected to generate $5,000 have been cancelled, and individuals who purchased tickets will receive refunds.

Old Salem also will be open for a special Christmas candlelight evening on December 22.

Duke gets $5 million for environmental research, education

Duke University has received a $5 million gift to support environmental research and education at Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment.

The gift is from alumni Jeff and Laurie Ubben, who also are giving $20 million to the World Wildlife Fund for wildlife conservation programs.

Jeff Ubben, a member of Duke’s board of trustees, is co-founder and CEO of ValueAct Capital in San Francisco.

Pope Foundation gives $2.21 million

The John William Pope Foundation in Raleigh awarded $2.21 million in grants to human service, animal, arts, and education nonprofits, including $1.43 million for 58 nonprofits Triangle.

Economic mobility group gets $1.5 million pledge

Leading on Opportunity Council in Charlotte received a $1.5 million pledge from Bank of America, payable over three years, to support staffing and operations to supports its work in advancing economic mobility in Charlotte and Mecklenburg County.

Thompson gets $1 million

Thompson in Matthews has received a $1 million grant from The Duke Endowment in Charlotte to fund an expansion in evidence-based family education programming and foster care services in the Carolinas.
Asheville funder gives $347,000 for environment

The Pigeon River Fund of The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina in Asheville awarded $347,005 to environmental groups working to improve surface water quality, enhance fish and wildlife habitats, expand public use and access to waterways and increase water quality awareness in Buncombe, Haywood and Madison counties.

V Foundation to match $100,000 contribution

The V Foundation for Cancer Research in Cancer will match a $100,000 contribution it will get this month from the Dolphins Cancer Challenge through a new partnership with the Miami Dolphins, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami, and ESPN to support to an emerging researcher at the Cancer Center.

Museum of Arts gets $50,000

Bailey’s Fine Jewelry in Raleigh donated $50,000 to the North Carolina Museum of Art to support art education programs.

The donation included $25,000 from proceeds raised at a special event on October 21 hosted by the company at its store in Cameron Village featuring jewelry designer David Yurman that attracted 100 guests, plus $25,000 in matching fund from Bailey’s.

The Forge lands $50,000 matching grant

The Greensboro City Council has approved a matching grant of $50,000 to the Forge in Greensboro for its capital campaign that aims to raise $200,000.

The Forge must raised at least $50,000 by July 2018 to secure the city’s match.

Funds from the campaign, which already has raised $32,000 since it was launched October 11, will be used to support membership growth, expand educational workshops and community programs, and add new equipment for member use.

United Way, Wells Fargo team up to collect food

Eleven local food pantries will receive food collected through December 30 at Wells Fargo branches in High Point through a national partnership between United Way and Wells Fargo to collect donations of canned food.

Wine event to benefit Frankie Lemmon School

Triangle Wine Experience to benefit Frankie Lemmon School in Raleigh, will be held February 1-3, 2018.

The 25-year-old event, which raises over $1.6 million a year for the school,  includes winery dinners at 40 Triangle’s restaurants on February 1; wine tastings at wine retailers on February 2;  and an auction and gala on February 3 at 5 p.m. at the former Gander Mountain location in Park West Village in Morrisville.

Gillmor named to Pediatrics Advisory Council

Lily Gillmor, director of Transitions Kids at Transitions LifeCare in Raleigh and co-chair of the Pediatric Palliative Care Coalition of North Carolina, has been selected to serve on the Pediatrics Advisory Council of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization.

Funding available for female entrepreneurs

January 23 is the deadline for submitting online applications for funding to NC IDEA in Durham for funding for SOAR, its program designed to help female entrepreneurs overcome gender-related obstacles to raising capital.

Kate B. Reynolds Foundation sets deadline for local grants

February 13, 2018, is the deadline for submitting applications to the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust for grants to support programs that serve people in Forsyth County.

Groups that may want to apply should contact Alison Elster, program coordinator, at alison@kbr.org or (336) 397-5521, before Jan. 30, 2018.

USO hosts event for National Guard soldiers

Nearly 150 National Guard soldiers from the North Carolina National Guard Recruiting Command were scheduled to attend a Warrior Reset program in Greensboro on December 7 and 8 hosted by USO of North Carolina.

The event featured sessions on wellness, mindfulness, conflict resolution, techniques through alternate therapies such as horticulture, and story-sharing.

Bowl-a-Thon raises $12,000 for Cone Health Cancer Center

The annual Johnnie Mae Hooker Bowl-a-Thon raised $12,000 for Cone Health Cancer Center, bringing to over $72,500 the total the event has raised since 2011.

Funds from the event, held at Triad Lanes in Greensboro, goes to the patient support fund, and a portion helps breast cancer patients through the Alight Program.

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Nonprofit news roundup, 12.08.17

Belk reverses decision, will allow Salvation Army kettles at stores

Belk has reversed a decision not to allow the Salvation Army to run its holiday fundraising campaign at many of its stores this year, including stores in Greensboro and High Point.

The Salvation Army of Greensboro had estimated it would need to raise an additional $15,000 in its annual Red Kettle campaign to offset the loss of the retailer, which has permitted the Salvation Army to run the campaign for over 80 years.

The Salvation Army of Greater High Point had estimated its campaign would need to offset a projected shortfall of $12,000 as a result of a Belk’s initial decision.

The Greensboro campaign, which began November 17 and runs through December 23 at about 35 locations, aims to raise $200,000, up from $180,000 last year.

Major Don Vick, Corps Officer of the Salvation Army of Greensboro, had estimated the initial decision by Belk would have meant the loss of over $315,000 for the Salvation Army in the Carolinas alone, where Belk has 54 locations where the Salvation Army has run its Kettle campaign.

Funds from the campaign support the services the Salvation Army provides. Last year, for example, the Salvation Army of Greensboro placed over 300 families in permanent shelter.

The Salvation Army of High Point aims to raise $150,000 in its campaign.

Salvation Army of Winston-Salem aims to raise $400,000

Salvation Army of Greater Winston-Salem, which serves Forsyth, Davie, Stokes and Yadkin counties, aims to raise $400,000 in its Kettle campaign, up from the $339,000 it raised last year.

Belk’s initial decision, since reversed, to bar some local Salvation Army campaigns from its stores would not have affected the Salvation Army in Winston-Salem, says Major Stan Colbert, area commander.

Heart & Stroke Walk raises $500,000

The 2017 Winston-Salem Heart & Stroke Walk on November 11 attracted over 5,000 supporters and local survivors of heart disease and stroke, and raised over $500,000 for heart disease and stroke research, and prevention education.

Co-chairing the event, held at Bailey Park at Wake Forest Innovation Quarter, were Greg Bray, chief financial officer of MedCost, and Allison Brashear, professor and chair of neurology at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, and president of the Triad board of directors of the American Heart Association.

Meredith campaign raises $70 million

Meredith College in Raleigh has raised $70 million in its campaign to raise $75 million, including over $4 million in its most recent fiscal year, and its endowment has grown to over $100 million.

V Foundation launched fund, raises $150,000

The V Foundation for Cancer Research in Cary has launched a fund named for Robin Roberts, a member of its board of directors and co-anchor of ABC’s Good Morning America, and raised over $150,000 at an event in New York City on December 4 to support translational research to improve the quality of life for adult and pediatric oncology patients after treatment

Homelessness declines 6% in North Carolina

Homelessness in North Carolina fell this year to 8,962 persons who experienced homelessness on a single night, down six percent from last year and 26 percent from 2010, says the 2017 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

who experienced, according to the latest national estimate by the U.S. Department of  Homelessness among families with children fell seven percent in the state, compared to last year.

Junior Achievement to honor Baker, DeJoy [photos]

Kevin Baker, executive director of the Piedmont Triad Airport Authority, and Louis DeJoy, president of LDJ Global Strategies, will be inducted into the Business Leaders Hall of Fame by Junior Achievement of the Triad at a dinner on January 23, 2018, at the Grandover Resort in Greensboro.

Baker, who joined the Airport Authority in January 2008, previously served as a vice president at the Michael Baker Corporation, a consulting firm that advised the Authority.

DeJoy previously was CEO of the supply chain business in the Americas for XPO Logistics.

National Pawn gives instruments, cash

National Pawn in Durham has donated a total of over 3,000 instruments to over 20 schools, plus a total of $50,000, in the eight North Carolina counties where it has stores.

The company has stores in Charlotte, Durham, Gastonia, Greensboro, Hope Mills, Raleigh, Wilmington and Winston-Salem.

Greensboro Rotary foundation supports Angel Flight

Eric Perdew, a member of Greensboro Rotary and volunteer pilot for Angel Flight, recently flew a 14-year-old patient and her father from Greensboro to Greenville, S.C, to be fitted with a new prosthetic hand at Shriner’s Hospital for Children.

Supported by the Rotary club’s foundation, which covers fuel to fly its missions, the Greensboro Rotary/Angel Flight team volunteers in helping to fly cancer patients, burn survivor children, tumor patients, organ donors, transplant patients, and others dealing with serious medical issues.

N.C. A&T gives gifts to foster children

North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro donated gifts to 200 foster children in Guilford County.

Make-A-Wish granting 3,500th wish

Make-A-Wish Eastern North Carolina was scheduled today to make its 3,500th wish.

Biddle Foundation sharpens focus

By Todd Cohen

DURHAM, N.C. — In 1956, when it was founded with stock worth just over $100,000, The Mary Duke Biddle Foundation in Durham awarded its first two grants — $204 each to Duke University and to Christ Church United Methodist in New York City.

Since then, its endowment has grown to $30 million, and it has awarded nearly $43 million in funding in North Carolina and New York.

Now, the foundation has decided to concentrate its competitive grantmaking in the Triangle, to double the size of its competitive grants, and to focus them on education and the arts.

Starting in 2018, it will provide a total of $350,000 in competitive funding — up from $82,500  this year — to nonprofits in Chatham, Durham, Orange and Wake counties to support learning and teaching in kindergarten through high school, and arts education, particularly for underserved students, and to strengthen the region’s cultural sector and artists.

It also will double the size of its competitive grants to $10,000, and may make even larger grants, possibly over multiple years. And it no longer will make competitive grants in New York City. This year, groups in New York received grants totaling $75,000.

“We are a small foundation, the total amount of our grant funding is limited, and we believe we can have a more significant impact on critical needs in education and arts in the Triangle by making fewer grants that are larger,” says Mimi O’Brien, the foundation’s executive director.

In recent years, the foundation made multi-year grants totaling $100,000 and $65,000, respectively, to the Southern Documentary Fund in Durham and to North Carolina Arts in Action in Carrboro, to help the organizations strengthen their operations and programs.

“Both those grants have been successful in helping those organizations build their own capacity, and reach more students and filmmakers,” O’Brien says.

In addition to making competitive grants, the foundation will continue to support Duke University. Under the foundation’s charter, Duke receives half its annual funding. In 2018, the Foundation’s total funding will grow to $1 million from $900,000 this year.

The foundation will continue to fund four organizations in the Triangle and one in Winston-Salem that it has supported for many years, as well as two churches in New York and one in Durham.

It also will award $40,000 a year, possibly teaming up with other funders, to help build the organizational capacity of North Carolina nonprofits, particularly in the Triangle, and to support promising initiatives.

In 2018, the  foundation plans to award $175,000 in the Triangle for education and arts education for underserved students in kindergarten through 12th grade, and $175,000 to strengthen the region’s cultural sector and develop its artistic talent. Deadlines for submitting online applications are December 15 for education grants and April 15, 2018, for arts and culture grants.

“It is important for all students, particularly the underserved, to have the sorts of educational experiences that are going to prepare them for success in the future, whatever type of work or career they do,” O’Brien says.

“Problem-solving, digital literacy, working collaboratively, project-based and experiential learning — these are the skills that are essential to being able to adapt and change in a world that is increasingly digital and requiring higher skills levels,” she says.

And the arts, she says, “are essential to strong, vibrant communities, and feed the soul.”

Education and the arts, and providing opportunities to people who otherwise might not have them, she  says, were important to Mary Duke Biddle, who was the only daughter of industrialist and philanthropist Benjamin Newton Duke and created the foundation in 1956. She died in 1960 at age 73.

Addressing those needs, she says, also was important to the late Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans, the daughter of Mrs. Biddle, and to her late husband, Dr. James H. Semans. The couple served on the Foundation’s board for nearly 50 years.

Education and the arts “are areas that Dr. and Mrs. Semans long supported,” O’Brien says. “We’re not very big. If we’re more focused, we could have greater impact.”

Organizations looking for funding from the Foundation for K-12 education or arts education should submit online letters of interest by December 15, while those looking for funding to strengthen the region’s cultural sector or artistic talent should submit online letters of interest between April 1, 2018, and April 15, 2018.

Nonprofit news roundup, 12.01.17

Donor retention declining

The overall rate of retention of charitable donors has fallen this year from last year, and is expected to continue dropping through the end of the year, a new report says

Overall donor retention fell to 32.6 percent for the first nine months of 2017, down from 34.5 percent in the same period last year, says the Fundraising Effectiveness Project Quarterly Report.

For the first six months of 2017, overall donor retention fell to 28.1 percent from 28.7 percent in the same period last year, says the report, which is based on data, from five fundraising software firms, on 4.8 million U.S. donors who gave a total of $4.69 billion.

The retention rate among previous-year donors, other than new donors, fell to 45 percent for the first nine months of this year, compared to 48 percent for same period each of the last four years.

That retention rate has declined each year since 2013, and is expected to drop again in 2017, the report says.

“If this downward trend in retention continues, the cost of fundraising will certainly increase with it,” the Fundraising Effectiveness Project says in a statement.

For the first nine months of the year, the retention rate for new donors was 17.6 percent, down from 23.2 percent for the same period last year, when it reached the highest level in five years.

Elizabeth Boris, director of Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy at the Urban Institute and a member of the steering committee for the Fundraising Effectiveness Project, says some fundraising experts believe “there’s not been enough effort made to build a relationship and communicate with donors outside fundraising.”

Those experts believe “nonprofits have to do a better job keeping in touch with their donors, and communicating with them when they’re not asking for money, and helping them care about the organization,” she says.

Among many factors that may be affecting donor retention, nonprofits also may be “getting used to doing one-off social-media giving,” Boris says. “If you’re just relying on social media, it’s not a way to build trust and long-term relationships.”

But she adds, “There’s a lot we don’t know.”

Gift donations of over $1,000 fell eight percent in the three months ended September 30, compared to the same period last year, while overall giving for the first nine months of 2017 fell four percent, compared to the same period in 2016, the report says.

Donations under $250 grew 6.9 percent in the third quarter, compared to the same period last year, and donations of $250 to $1,000 grew 21 percent, but those increases likely reflect a response to natural disasters in the three-month period, the report says.

The Fundraising Effectiveness Project, launched in 2006 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy at the Urban Institute, is based on data from by five donor software firms, with the report produced by two data-processing-and-analytics firms.

Bank of America gives $2.8 million in Charlotte

Bank of America awarded $2.8 million in grants to 36 nonprofits working in Charlotte to address the roots of economic mobility.

It also named the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership and Men’s Shelter of Charlotte the 2017 recipients of its Neighborhood Builders awards.

For each of those two nonprofits, the bank will provides leadership development for the executive director and a developing leader, $200,000 in flexible funding, a network of peer organizations across the U.S., and access to capital to expand their impact in the  community.

Food drive generates 3,200 meals

The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina generated over 3,200 meals in its inaugural one-day Caring for the Community Food Drive, hosted and promoted by the Pulse FM in coordination with Carli C’s IGA locations.

Habitat Greensboro to open second ReStore in spring

Habitat Greensboro plans in mid-spring to open a second ReStore on the southeast corner of Lawndale Drive and Cornwallis Drive after the Walgreens Drugstore there closes December 31.

The new location will focus on furniture and do-it-yourself projects from a slightly-smaller space than its other location at 3826 W. Gate City Blvd. that featured new and used appliances, building materials and furniture.

Benefit gala for Carolina Theatre to feature Gladys Knight

Soul singer Gladys Knight will be the featured performer for the 7th Annual Command Performance Benefit Gala on April 19, 2018, that will benefit The Carolina Theatre of Greensboro.

Sponsored by TCDI and VF Corporation, the event will include a dinner at 5:30 p.m. and a concert at 8 p.m.

Co-Chairs for the event are Seth D. Moore of Fidelity Bank and lawyer Don Vaughan of Don R. Vaughan and Associates.

Brady Services first veterans sponsor for Heart Association

Brady Services is the first Guilford County veterans sponsor for the American Heart Association in the Triad and will sponsor a special VIP area for veterans and their families at the Association’s High Point Healthy For Good Expo on February 24 and at the Guilford Heart & Stroke Walk on May 19.

Davidson Hospice honors Young

Philip Young, vice president of business development at Radians Inc. in Thomasville and a former chair of the board of directors of Hospice of Davidson County, was honored by the Hospice board for his service and support to the agency.

Young and his family recently made a donation to the serenity garden just outside Hinkle Hospice House.

EnergyUnited Foundation gives $10,000 for hurricane relief

The EnergyUnited Foundation in Statesville made a $10,000 gift to Samaritan’s Purse to help fund its relief efforts for people in the U.S. and Caribbean affected by hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria.

NC Global Leadership awards $1,000 scholarship

NC Global Leadership in Greensboro, formerly Piedmont Triad Council for International Visitors, has awarded a $1,000 scholarship to Barry “Justin” Spencer, a senior from Huntersville at N.C. A&T State University in Greensboro support his plan to study next semester at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan.

Professional-development available for artists

January 5, 2018, at 5 p.m. is the deadline for artists and collaborative groups in Forsyth, Davie, Davidson, Stokes, Surry, and Yadkin counties to submit applications to the Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County for Duke Energy Regional Artist Project Grants that offer support professional development.

Nonprofit news roundup, 11.27.17

Cone Health Foundation awards $4.84 million

Cone Health Foundation in Greensboro has awarded nearly $4.84 million in grants to 36 nonprofits in the region, brining its total grantmaking since 1997 to over $86 million.

Nonprofits receiving grants work in the foundation’s four focus areas, including access to health care; adolescent pregnancy prevention; HIV/AIDS; and substance abuse and mental health.

Some grants were made outside those categories and support community collaborations.

The median award was $100,500, and 41 percent of grant awards focused on access to care.

Salvation Army of High Point aims to raise $150,000

The Salvation Army of High Point has kicked off its annual Red Kettle campaign, which this year aims to raise $150,000.

The campaign needs to offset a projected shortfall of $12,000 as a result of a decision by a regional retailer no longer to allow the Salvation Army to set up it red kettles at more than 100 of its stores in the Southeast, including one in High Point.

And in the face of rising local need for food and clothing, the Salvation Army says, it again has begun it annual campaign two weeks before Thanksgiving in an effort to raise an additional $10,000 to $15,000 — enough to serve 200 families more than the 30,000 it served in the fiscal year ended September 30.

Barbara leaving Forsyth Futures

Dan Barbara has resigned as executive director of Forsyth Futures to care for an ailing parent but has agreed to continue serving in his role from his new home in the Southwest until the end of November, and then as a consultant for Forsyth Futures until the end of 2017.

Members of the board of directors of Forsyth Futures will oversee operations of the organization, with the support of staff members as needed, says board chair Rence Callahan.

The board is assessing the need for an interim executive director and aims to have a plan in place to go forward by the beginning of 2018, Callahan says.

Western North Carolina funder gives $1.45 million

The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina in Asheville awarded grants totaling nearly $1.45 million to nonprofits serving economically-disadvantaged populations in 18 counties in the region.

John Rex Endowment gives $800,000

The John Rex Endowment in Raleigh awarded seven grants totaling over $800,000 to organizations and groups that support the physical, mental and emotional well-being of children.

Marathon team raises $578,000 for V Foundation

Team V, the endurance training program for the V Foundation for Cancer Research in Cary, raised $577,985 in the TCS New York City Marathon on November 5.

High Point Community Foundation gives $369,000

The High Point Community Foundation awarded a total of $369,310 in grants to 18 Guilford County charities, an increase of $40,000 from last year, at its 2017 annual grants luncheon on November 15 at High Point Country Club $40,000.

Legal Aid reopens office in Boone

Legal Aid of North Carolina has reopened its Boone office, thanks to funding from the Governor’s Crime Commission, six years after budget cuts forced the organization to close some of its smaller offices throughout the state.

State Farm agents partner with Junior Achievement

More than 20 local State Farm agents are partnering with Junior Achievement of the Triad to talk about their entrepreneurial experiences with high school students at Walter Williams High School in Burlington, Dudley High School in Greensboro, High Point Central High School, and Carver High School in Winston-Salem.

Family Service receives care bags

Family Service of the Piedmont received 150 care bags from Foresters Financial for the Fairview Family Resource Center on Taylor Street in High Point.

The donation included 75 hygiene kits filled with toiletry items, and 75 “New Mommy” kits filled with diapers, wipes and other items.

Ziehl-Abegg teams with Guilford Apprenticeship Partners

Ziehl-Abegg, a German manufacturer of fans and motors with operations in Greensboro, has joined Guilford Apprenticeship Partners to provide a four-year work agreement with apprentices.

Camp Corral names two to advisory council

Clark Frederick, a retired colonel in the Army Reserve, and Gary Bowen, dean of the School of Social Work at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, have been appointed to the National Advisory Council of Raleigh-based Camp Corral.

College students build beds for veterans

Two student-run groups at High Point University teamed up to build 50 beds for Heal Our Heroes Camp, a new facility that will house homeless veterans in High Point.

Bank employees pitch in with Community Housing Solutions

Employees from First Bank teamed up with Community Housing Solutions to set kitchen cabinets, paint walls and complete trim work in the house of a single mother of two who lives in Greensboro.

Guilford Partnership for Children to host anniversary breakfast

Partnership for Children of Guilford County will celebrate its 20th anniversary at a breakfast on December 6 from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Union Square Campus at 124 E. Gate Blvd. in Greensboro.

Carteret funder gives $54,600

Carteret Community Foundation, an affiliate of the North Carolina Community Foundation, awarded 20 local grants totaling $54,605.

Oakwood Cemetery works to keep history alive

By Todd Cohen

RALEIGH, N.C. — In 1867, under federal occupation, the city of Raleigh was told the cemetery at its Civil War hospital, containing the remains of Union and Confederate soldiers alike, was becoming a national cemetery.

In response, a group of local women formed the Ladies Memorial Association, which successfully lobbied state lawmakers for $1,000. It then asked the Mordecai family for two-and-a-half acres where it could bury the remains of Confederate soldiers interred in the hospital cemetery in violation of a federal law prohibiting the burial of Confederate soldiers alongside Union dead.

The Association then bought the Mordecai land for $1, and used the rest of the funds from state lawmakers to move the remains of 494 Confederate soldiers and make improvements to the former Mordecai land, now part of Historic Oakwood Cemetery.

Oakwood Cemetery, which celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019, has grown to 72 acres and is home to the remains of 25,000 people, among them local and state political, business and civic leaders, and over 1,400 Confederate soldiers.

Oakwood each year hosts thousands of visitors, including hundreds of students, for public tours, events and educational programs on history, death and dying.

“A cemetery is a place of remembrance, where generations after us will come back to learn about the people who lived before them,” says Robin Simonton, executive director of the Raleigh Cemetery Association.

In 1986 the nonprofit purchased the two-and-a-half acre confederate cemetery for $1 from the women’s group that had formed it and had been renamed United Daughters of the Confederacy.

Operating with an annual budget of $550,000 and seven employees, Oakwood Cemetery holds five burials in a typical week, and has enough space to handle burials for at least 200 more years, says Simonton, former program and volunteer services executive at Raleigh-based Girl Scouts North Carolina Coastal Pines who studied Amish burial customs in graduate school and holds a master’s degree in historical administration.

Oakwood generates about 95 percent of its operating income through fees from the sale of burial plots and monuments, and the preparation of graves. It generates the remainder through donations, mainly contributions for tours and education programs.

Oakwood is in the early stages of considering whether to change its tax-exempt status. As a nonprofit cemetery, it now can accept contributions of no more than $13,000 a year. for which the donors can take a deduction. Becoming a charitable nonprofit as well would remove that limit.

If it made that change, Oakwood likely would launch a formal fundraising program, mainly to cover the costs of preservation, expansion of its education programs, and repairs from storms and vandalism.

Two years ago, Oakwood spent $23,000 to restore 11 headstones in its Confederate cemetery that vandals had defaced by painting anti-slavery language.

And in the wake of the toppling in September of a Confederate statue in Durham, the Raleigh Police Department has increased its patrols of the cemetery, Simonton says.

In 2011, Oakwood spent tens of thousands of dollars to remove 17 trees and restore dozens of grave monuments felled by tornadoes.

“This was a garden cemetery, which were precursors to city parks,” Simonton says. “This is where people came to socialize, go on dates and picnics, in the early days. We invite people to come in and enjoy the cemetery as it was for generations.”

As part of its nonprofit mission, she says, Oakwood provides learning opportunities throughout the year for students, civic groups, and for individuals and families trying to cope with death and dying.

Once a semester, students from William Peace University enrolled in a class on death and dying visit Oakwood to learn about death traditions and customs. And continuing-education students from N.C. State University visit the cemetery for a six-week course on “Discovering the Dead.”

Oakwood partners with Renaissance Funeral Home and Transitions LifeCare to host sessions on death and dying.

In a competitive business — Raleigh is home to two other cemeteries, and its incidence of cremation far exceeds that of North Carolina overall, and of rural areas — Oakwood does little advertising, and markets itself mainly by inviting the public to “use the grounds as they’ve always been used,” Simonton says.

Although one in five Americans has a cremation urn at home, “a cemetery is always important,” she says. “To be remembered is an important part of the grieving process for you and your family.”

Nonprofit news roundup, 11.17.17

Donor-advised funds surge

Total assets available to donor-advised fund accounts for grantmaking grew 9.7 percent to $85.15 billion in 2016, while grants from donor-advised funds to qualified charities represent four percent of all individual giving and grew 10.4 percent to $15.75 billion for a payout rate of 20.03 percent, a new report says.

Contributions to donor-advised funds grew 7.6 percent to $23.27 billion in 2016, and the number of donor-advised fund accounts grew 6.9 percent to 284,965, says the 2017 Donor-Advised Fund Report from the National Philanthropic Trust.

The average size of donor-advised fund accounts grew 2.6 percent to a record-high $298,809.

Massachusetts was home to 82,643 individual donor-advised funds, the most in any state,  and their grant value totaled $3.1 billion, while contributions to them totaled $5.18 billion, both the highest of any state.

Donor-advised fund charitable assets under management totaled $18.89 billion, the most of any state, while nearly half of all donor-advised fund accounts were sponsored by charities in Massachusetts, California and Pennsylvania.

Donor-advised funds are the fastest growing vehicle for charitable giving in the U.S., the National Philanthropic Trust says.

Giving circles raise nearly $1.3 billion

The number of collective-giving groups, known as giving circles, have tripled since 2007, engaged at least 150,000 individuals in all 50 states, and given up to $1.29 billion, a new study says.

Women represent 70 percent of all giving-circle members, while a specific shared identity, such as gender, race, age or religion, is the basis of 60 percent of all giving circles, says The Landscape of Giving Circles/Collective Giving Groups in the U.S. — 2016, from the Collective Giving Research Group, with support from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University.

While men are members of 66 percent of giving circles, the study says, they represent the majority of members in only 7.5 percent of groups.

The minimum dollar contribution required to join a giving circle ranges from under $20 to $2 million, and the average donation was $1,312, compared to $2,809i 2007.

Twenty-five networks of giving circles have emerged, representing 45 percent of giving circles.

In addition to donations from their members, 52 percent of giving circles receive additional funds from community foundations, corporate partners and other outside donors.

Leadership, staff changes at Made in Durham

Meredythe Holmes, founding executive director of Made in Durham, has resigned, and Casey Steinbacher, CEO of Casey’s Company and former CEO of the Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce, has been named interim executive director.

Steinbacher, a founding member of the Made in Durham board, will serve as interim executive director for three months while the board looks for a successor to Holmes.

Lorenza Wilkins, program manager for Triangle Literacy Center and president, chairman and CEO of Compass Youth Center in Warrenton, has been named senior director of programs and operations, succeeding Valerie Anderson, who left in September to become senior director of programs for the Emily Krzyzewski Center in Durham.

Deanna Knighton, career specialist and adjunct accounting instructor at Wake Technical Community College, has been named career development specialist, succeeding Dolan.

initiative develop career plans and career-readiness skills.

Dominique Oliver, a social worker for the Durham County Department of Social Services, has been named re-engagement specialist, a new position that will support expansion of Durham Futures with a three-year, $750,000 grant from the Oak Foundation.

Jacob Dolan has been promoted to employer engagement strategist.

Forsyth United Way aims to raise $15.5 million

United Way Forsyth County has set a goal of $15.5 million for its annual campaign, $400,000 more than it raised a year ago.

Chairing the campaign, which on November 1 had raised 55 percent of its goal is John McConnell, CEO Emeritus of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.

Funds raised a year ago helped fund over 60 programs through over 40 agencies that served more than 78,000 residents of Forsyth County.

Chronic homelessness near zero in Guilford County

The number of cases of chronic homelessness in Guilford County fell to only three last summer from 143 in 2013, making the county one of only seven communities in the U.S. to attain or nearly reach a “sustainable zero” in chronic homelessness, according to the Phillips Foundation.

From 2013 to 2016, through United Way of Greater Greensboro, the Foundation invested a total of $1.96 million in Partners Ending Homelessness.

Based on an estimated cost to Guilford County taxpayers of roughly $30,000 a year in emergency services and subsidized care for each case of chronic homelessness, the Foundation says, its investment in the work of Partners Ending Homelessness helped save Guilford County taxpayers an average of $1.26 million a year over the life of the grant, or a total of $3.78 million.

Ties between foundations, grantees focus of report

Foundations can best strengthen their relationships with nonprofits they fund if they focus on understanding the nonprofits and the context in which they work, and if they are transparent with them, a new report says.

And the foundation program officer to whom a nonprofit grantee is assigned plays a crucial role in shaping how the nonprofit experiences its relationship with the foundation, says the report, Relationships Matter: Program Officers, Grantees, and the Keys to Success, from the Center for Effective Philanthropy.

The report, based on the perspectives of nearly 20,000 grantees of 86 foundations, also finds that nonprofit leaders value funders’ understanding of their organizations’ goals and strategies; the challenges they face; the communities and fields in which they work; the social, cultural, and economic context in which they work; and the needs of their ultimate beneficiaries.

Hotel Association collecting items for homeless

Through November 30, the Guilford County Hotel Association is collecting donated sheets, towels, blankets, pillows, and other linens for distribution through the Salvation Army, Greensboro Urban Ministry, Barnabas Network and other agencies to the homeless population.

Donated items can be dropped off in Greensboro at Greensboro Marriott Downtown at 304 North Greene St.; Courtyard by Marriott at 4400 West Wendover Ave; Hampton Inn and Suites Coliseum Area at 3033 West Gate City Blvd; and in High Point at Greensboro

Radisson at 135 South Main St.

Civic groups raise $13,500 for food for kids in need

The Nat Greene Kiwanis club in Greensboro and the eight Rotary Clubs of Greensboro raised over $13,500 at a golf event October 31 at Bryan Park Golf Club for the Out of Garden Project, with proceeds to be used to provide all children in need at Allen Middle School and Southern Middle School with food backpacks for the entire school year.

Coles to head foundation at United Way

Cathy Coles, former special education teacher at the Triad Academy at Summit School, has been named executive director of the United Way of Forsyth County Foundation.

Coles, who previously served as executive director of Project Potential, will oversee the major gifts and planned giving programs at United Way, and will be responsible for overseeing the development and growth of the foundation’s philanthropic goals.

Food Bank honors donors, vice president

The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina in Raleigh honored its top donors in fiscal 2016-17, including Food Lion, Walmart Foundation, Full House Farms, and Publix Super Markets Charities.

And it presented its annual Hunt-Morgridge Service Award to Earline Middleton, its vice president for agency services and programs.

Gunter honored by Goodwill

Michael D. Gunter, who retired last year as a partner at Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice in Winston-Salem, received the 2017 Heritage Award from Goodwill Industries of Northwest North Carolina.

The organization has presented the award, its highest honor, only four times in its 91-year history.

Thompson launches program for teenage girls in custody

Thompson in Matthews has began a program to provide short-term housing, assessment and “wraparound” services for females ages 12 to 17 in the custody of the Mecklenburg County Division of Youth and Family Services.

Dental foundation accepting grant applications

December 20 is the deadline for community-based oral health programs and organizations in North Carolin that focus on children’s oral health, particularly among underserved populations, to submit applications to the Delta Dental Foundation in Raleigh for grants that will total up to $45,000.

Jeffrey joins Cone Health Foundation board

Paul A. Jeffrey, president of Wesley Long Hospital in Greensboro and first chief inclusion office at Cone Health, has joined the board of directors of Cone Health Foundation.

John Rex Endowment board names new members, chair

The John Rex Endowment named three new board members, including consultant Warren Ludwig; John Rusher of Raleigh Pediatric Associates; and Kate Simpson, vice president of TrueBridge Capital Partners.

Linda Butler, vice president of medical affairs and chief medical officer at UNC REX Healthcare, is board chair.

Goodwill, Habitat team up on recycling drive

Triad Goodwill and Habitat for Humanity of Greater Greensboro are partnering on a recycling drive this weekend at Christ United Methodist Church at 410 N. Holden Road in Greensboro

The two agencies will collect donated clothing, linens, housewares, furniture and building supplies on November 18 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on November 19 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

They then will sort the items for distribution or for sale in their respective retail locations.

Board changes at Junior Achievement

Randy Brodd, a partner at Dixon Hughes Goodman, has been elected board chair at Junior Achievement of Eastern North Carolina, and Jon Dewar, president of LPL Financial, has been elected chair-elect.

Joining the board are Kevin McGarry, assistant vice president and relationship manager and PNC, and Felicia Woodard, senior vice president and market team lead for Triangle commercial banking at Bank of America.