Social Service/Public Welfare/Human Services

Gov't Awards $234 Million in AmeriCorps Expansion
June 8, 2010

WASHINGTON -- The government took the first step Monday in expanding the AmeriCorps program, awarding grants to nonprofits and other organizations to put 57,000 AmeriCorps members to work in communities around the country.

The grants, totaling $234 million, are the first to be released under a new law aimed at tripling the national service program by 2017. States and territories will also get an additional $129 million for AmeriCorps slots. Officials expect to have a total of 85,000 people enrolled in the program this year.

Starved for Attention: A Radical New Vision of Malnutrition
June 3, 2010

NEW YORK, JUNE 2, 2010  – The international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and the VII Photo agency today launched “Starved for Attention,” a global multimedia campaign presenting a unique and new perspective of childhood malnutrition, a preventable and treatable condition that nonetheless claims the lives of millions of children each year.  

The collaboration challenges established notions of malnutrition through a seven-part mini-documentary series; clichéd images are substituted with those of parents and health workers struggling to meet the nutritional needs of young, growing children.  Starved for Attention highlights how increased childhood sickness and early death can be prevented with effective nutritional interventions. The campaign launch coincides with the onset of a particularly harsh “hunger gap” season in Africa’s Sahel region, the period when staple food crops run out before the next harvest and malnutrition typically increases. 

Safeway Raises $10.7 Million for Disabilities Effort
May 18, 2010

Safeway Inc. and The Safeway Foundation announced that they raised $10.7 million in April during the company's annual Support for People with Disabilities Campaign and pledged to continue its efforts to support two of the most prominent organizations that assist people with disabilities: Easter Seals and Special Olympics.

ASC Featured on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Sunday May 16
May 14, 2010

(Crested Butte, CO)—With fresh powder blanketing the mountain and bluebird skies each day, prime conditions in the historic mountain town of Crested Butte during the last week of February set the stage for another picture-perfect vacation at the Adaptive Sports Center (ASC) for an Extreme Makeover: Home Edition family. The ASC and Crested Butte Mountain Resort (CBMR) hosted the Williams Family from Pine Mountain Valley, Georgia this winter, the third Extreme Makeover: Home Edition family to vacation with the ASC in the last four years. An expected 10 million viewers will watch the season finale episode, to air Sunday, May 16 at 8 p.m. ET (7 p.m. MT) on ABC.

W.K. Kellogg Foundation Announces $75 Million Effort to Tackle Structural Racism and Promote Racial Healing
May 13, 2010

WASHINGTON – In an unprecedented effort to address the devastating impact of racial inequities on communities across the country, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation launched today a five-year, $75 million initiative – America Healing – that aims to improve life outcomes for vulnerable children and their families by promoting racial healing and eliminating barriers to opportunities. 

Children of color are over-represented among the 29 million low-income children and families in this country, particularly among families living in concentrated poverty. According to data from the National Center for Children in Poverty, about 61 percent of African American, 62 percent of Latino, 57 percent of Native American, 58 percent of children with immigrant parents, 30 percent of Asian American children and 26 percent of white children live in low-income families.

Last Look: Rebecca Raible, director of development, Equal Justice USA
January 1, 2010

Equal Justice USA was founded in 1990 as a program of the Quixote Center, a multi-issue social-justice umbrella organization based in Maryland. In 2008, it separated to become a fully independent organization and moved its headquarters to Brooklyn, N.Y., and just recently opened a West Coast office in Seattle. EJUSA's mission is to build a criminal justice system that is fair, effective and humane, starting with repeal of the death penalty and increased services to families of homicide victims. Its recent organizational accomplishments include ending the death penalty in New York in 2005 and New Jersey in 2007, and gutting Maryland's death penalty in 2009.

Tips for Engaging Teens
March 3, 2009

I recently came across an announcement that Do Something, an organization missioned to empower teens to make a difference in their communities, is accepting applications for its annual Do Something Awards. Bulleted at the top of the announcement were three questions: "Have you identified a social problem and done something about it? Have you created measurable change that has tangibly improved the lives of people in your community? Are you 25 or under?"

Alison Des Forges, 66, Human Rights Advocate, Dies
February 17, 2009

Alison L. Des Forges, a human rights activist and historian who tried to call the world’s attention to the looming genocide in Rwanda in 1994 and who later wrote what is considered the definitive account of the eventual slaughter of more than 500,000 Rwandans, was among the passengers killed Thursday when Continental Airlines Flight 3407 crashed near Buffalo. She was 66 and lived in Buffalo.

Are You Ready for an Emergency Campaign?
April 2, 2007

I can’t tell you how many times over the past years that I have been at direct-marketing and fundraising conferences and heard, “If only our organization had disaster or emergency response within our scope — we could raise big dollars too!” Nonprofits of all sizes will, at some point, face some level of emergency. Those organizations that have proven and practiced plans in place before the fact, and act quickly to respond to issues in the media, will find fundraising success. Take the example of a small organization that has worked on issues in the Middle East for more than