NCAA tournament preview: Oklahoma vs. Albany

first_imgNo. 3 Oklahoma (22-10) vs. No. 14 Albany (24-9)Time, TV: 7:27 p.m. ET, truTVWhere: Columbus, OhioWhy Oklahoma will win: While junior guard Buddy Hield (17.5-point average), the Big 12’s player of the year, is capable of scoring explosions, the East’s No. 3 seed has multiple offensive options. All five starters average at least 9.2 points. But it’s their defense that propelled them to a second-place finish in the Big 12’s regular-season standings. Opponents average just 38.5% from the field and 62.8 points.Why Albany will win: Oklahoma prefers a fast pace, 14th-seeded Albany likes it slow. If the Great Danes can control the tempo, they’ll have a decent shot at the upset. If it comes down to late dramatics, they’ll be familiar with that. After starting the season 2-6, Albany finished 22-2 and won the America East tournament when Peter Hooley’s three-pointer with 1.6 seconds left pushed the Danes past Stony Brook and to their third consecutive NCAA tournament appearance.History lesson: In taking Oklahoma to the NCAA tournament for the third consecutive year, Lon Kruger is the only coach in history to take five different schools to the tournament (Kansas State, Florida, Illinois, UNLV, Oklahoma), including a Final Four trip with Florida. But Oklahoma has not won in the tournament in Kruger’s tenure. Albany has appeared five times, but its only win in the tournament came in the First Four last season, over Mount St. Mary’s.last_img read more

3 Ways to Disagree Productively and Find Common Ground [Video]

first_imgSource: TED This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Like this:Like Loading…RelatedTED: What is the First Secret of Design? [Video]We’ve all been there. The everyday things that are a part of our lives, that we pay close attention to at first, we stop noticing over time. But as a designer, it’s up to you to look at those everyday things, go one step further, and find ways to improve…In “Web design”How Do You Maintain a Front-End Style Guide in Your Workflow?It all started with a tweet from Susan Robertson, asking how front-end style guides were managed. What followed was a fascinating Twitter conversation, lasting several hours, among members of the web community discussing workflow, tools, recommendations, and plans to talk further in a web conference. I heard about it after…In “Web design”Weekly Roundup of Web Design and Development News: June 2, 2017In this week’s web design and development resources roundup, you’ll learn how to make accessibility a core design principle, find a UX event calendar for southeast Michigan, discover how to get started with CSS Grid Layout today, and more. If you’re new to my blog, each Friday I publish a…In “Web design & development links” At times, it seems there’s nothing we can agree on. Whether you’re discussing a new product feature with your team or talking politics at the table during your family holiday dinner, tempers can flare and biting words can leave us frustrated and angry.Public discourse is broken. We feel it everywhere. In her 13-minute TED talk, Julia Dhar invites us to learn how to disagree productively, find common ground in our conversations, and transform the way we talk with each other.One of the first things to do: find common ground. What is it that we can all agree on? For example, the importance of safer communities provides a shared reality where we can start the conversation, rather than pontificate, says Dhar. One of the hardest things we face is to separate ourselves from our ideas. Could we be wrong? Dhar explains that we need to debate ideas, rather than discuss identity. Her recommendations:Stop talking and start listeningStop dismissing and start persuadingStop shutting down and start opening mindsI love how she shared the story of Mister Rogers speaking to the United States Congress in 1969 . The story is well-known in the United States. Mister Rogers came to testify about the importance of children’s broadcasting to the Senate Subcommittee on Communications, after President Richard Nixon proposed a $20 million cut to public television’s annual operating budget.Using his debate and persuasion skills, Mister Rogers was able to convince the head of the committee, Senator Pastore, to restore the funds.I can only aspire to become as well-skilled in debate and persuasion as Mister Rogers! Check out the 14-minute video of Dhar’s October 2018 [email protected] talk:last_img read more

Formula 1: Indian Grand Prix hits customs hurdle

first_imgEven as the upcoming Indian Grand Prix looked like it was racing towards a perfect start, the country’s inaugural Formula 1 race has hit a roadblock. Just 45 days before the race, the organisers and the government are locked in a tussle over custom duties. The customs department has been insisting that Jaypee Sports International (JPSI) — the promoter of the Indian GP racetrack — pay duty upfront on all equipment being brought into the country for the race. It is estimated that the total duty could come to Rs 600 crore or more. JPSI, on its part, has been pushing for the practice that is followed in other countries where a custom bonded area is declared for the track. This would allow F1 cargo to be immediately taken to the track, assembled and then flown out after the race, avoiding any sort of custom duty. The government, however, has been bizarrely classifying F1 as entertainment and not sport, which means no such exemption to it. As a result JPSI might be forced to pay the entire duty to allow the equipment to come into the country. After a deduction of 2 per cent, the remaining amount would be returned by the customs department.last_img read more

7 Musts for Last-Minute Nonprofit Fundraising Appeals That Work

first_imgSource: Network for Good Digital Giving Index2016 is winding down, but we’re in the midst of the biggest giving days of the year. Make the most of your fundraising efforts with more effective last-minute fundraising appeals. Before you send your final email appeals, give them a quick review to ensure they’ll pay off. (And if you haven’t yet sent a final fundraising reminder, drop whatever you’re doing and create a short, to-the-point email to send to supporters who haven’t given this season.)Strike on December 30 AND December 31Giving is spiking this week and will reach the year’s peak on December 31. Your donors will be ready to complete their gifts, so make sure you’re top of mind—and top of inbox—during this window of opportunity.Make Your Subject Line Do the Heavy LiftingRemember that your donors are receiving many messages this time of year, so your first job is to stand out and compel them to click your message instead of ignoring it or sending it straight to the trash folder. Shorter subject lines are better, and headlines that create a curiosity gap—an unanswered question in the donor’s mind—work well. Don’t shy away from reinforcing urgency in your subject line as well.Keep It Short and Get to the PointThe time has passed for in-depth stories and long-form fundraising appeals. Your donors’ attention span won’t allow you to dig in, so your appeals need to be bold and clear. Also, consider that as time winds down, it’s likely your donors may be reading (and acting on) your appeals from a mobile device, so brevity is key.A Clear Call to Action Is Your Best FriendMake it crushingly obvious what you’re asking donors to do. A clear call to action is where you deliver the instructions for your donor’s next step. Avoid potentially confusing words such as “help” or “join” and stick with direct asks like “Donate now.” or “Give today.”Underscore the Sense of UrgencyThe end of the year has its own sense of urgency, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t play it up. Remind your donors that time is running out and that great things can happen if they act now—and nothing can happen if they don’t. Deadlines, matching gifts, and incentives all help drive this need to take action.Take Them Exactly Where You Want Them to GoOne of the biggest mistakes I often see nonprofits make: taking donors to a transition page or anywhere but their online donation page. The more clicks it takes for someone to realize the action you’ve inspired them to take, the more likely they are to bail on you. Include multiple links in your appeal and make sure they all point to your donation page. No exceptions.Make It EasyFrom your website, to your email, to your donation page, your online giving experience should be simple to understand, easy to use, and quick to complete. A streamlined page that keeps donors in the moment of giving and that focuses only on options that help encourage and increase gifts is an easy way to maximize the donations that will come in during these final days of 2015. (Need a better donation page that will help you raise more? There’s still time to get up and running, but talk to us now!)In a pinch? Try our simple last-minute fundraising appeal template to quickly create email fundraising appeals that will capture those generous procrastinators.last_img read more

5 Opportunities to Boost Giving, Donor Loyalty, and Job Satisfaction

first_imgNew research illuminates path to doing betterTake it from our peers in the field: Most communications and development teams aren’t communicating, cooperating, or collaborating with each other. Team goals are often quite different, with the two departments sometimes working at cross-purposes, unknowingly sabotaging fundraising results. But there’s good news: This disconnect is fixable.That’s the solid-gold takeaway from the 1,600 nonprofit communications and development staff members surveyed for the 2016 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report. Of respondents, 47% work in organizations with annual budgets under $1 million, and 53% work in organizations with budgets over $1 million, with the largest cohort in organizations with budgets in the $1 million to $5 million range.Donors come first, so goals and messages must be aligned.It’s a given that effective campaigns are about our prospects and donors, not about our organizations. That means donor outreach has to be unified, even if your team is split by goals or roles and responsibilities.There’s no way to provide that unified experience when communications and fundraising goals—and the activity that flows from them—are in silos. Instead, prospects and donors will be touched by a series of disconnected messages and visuals that don’t seem to come from the same organization. That’s a proven recipe for confusing the people whose help you need and deterring them from action.Unfortunately, that’s exactly what happens now in most organizations. According to the Trends Report (p. 5), communications and fundraising team goals diverge along these lines, with executive directors focusing somewhere in the middle:Development goals: Donor acquisition and retentionCommunications goals: Community engagement and brand awarenessFindings highlight five opportunities to do better.The good news is that by syncing fundraising and communications teams’ focus and activities—or, better yet, fully integrating them—we can do so much better. The Trends Report highlights three key findings and five significant opportunities to do better for our donors, our organizations, and ourselves. Win-win-win.Fully integrated communications and fundraising teams are more effective than separate teams or one team managing the other.Integration boosts communications staff ownership of fundraising goals by 400% and fundraising staff ownership of community building and engagement goals by 200%. (p. 8)Opportunity 1: You’ll have more hands and skills on deck to boost engagement and donations.Opportunity 2: You’ll get a clearer, broader understanding of possibilities and plans for engagement and community building, so you can sync fundraising campaign content and distribution accordingly. As a result, you’ll be able to craft touchpoints that look and sound like they come from a single organization and ensure that distribution timing and channels are honed for greatest impact.Opportunity 3: You’ll reduce conflict, delays, and duplication of effort in content creation, review, and approval. That will save time and effort and boost employee ease.Communications and fundraising teams have equal status and authority within organizations. (p. 25)Opportunity 4: Team members will have more to gain and little to lose in moving toward more collaboration or full integration. That means a greater likelihood that leadership and teams in more organizations will be motivated to make this radical change—and succeed in doing so. Members of fully integrated communications and fundraising teams (working for a single manager) are significantly more satisfied with their jobs. (p. 25)Communications Trends Report findings correlate staff members owning both fundraising and community engagement goals with greater job satisfaction.Opportunity 5: Finally, a clear way to reduce the high turnover rate for fundraisers. The payoff is clear for you, your colleagues, your organization, and your beneficiaries. Take a deep breath! Identifying a problem is the first step in fixing it. Then, use these five concrete opportunities, with supporting proof points, to start closing your communications-fundraising divide.I’ll follow up with specific, doable steps to getting to a unified voice and a fully integrated communications and marketing team. Stay tuned!Get more insights, talking points, and ways to do better in the 2016 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report.last_img read more

Private Providers Important to Maternal Health Care

first_imgPosted on October 10, 2012March 31, 2017By: Amy Boldosser, Director, Global Advocacy Program, Family Care InternationalClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Family Care International was proud to partner with Merck for Mothers and Women Deliver to host a stimulating and provocative discussion on The Role of Private Providers in Expanding Access to Affordable, Quality Maternal Healthcare. At this side event to the 2012 UN General Assembly, held in New York on September 25, 2012, a distinguished panel of speakers highlighted the crucial role that private providers play in ensuring access to quality maternal health care, especially for the most marginalized populations, and the important contribution they can make in accelerating progress towards achieving Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 5, which aims to reduce maternal mortality by 75% and achieve universal access to reproductive health.While there has been notable progress in reducing maternal mortality globally over the past decade, only 10 countries are currently on track to reach the 75% reduction target, and more than a quarter-million women continue to die each year from complications of pregnancy and childbirth. Approximately 99% of maternal deaths occur in the developing world, most of them in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, and almost all of these deaths could be prevented with better access to skilled care before, during, and after childbirth. In many countries, the private health sector — including independent physicians, nurses, and midwives; traditional practitioners; private clinics and hospitals; pharmacies, health shops, and drug outlets; and health insurers — plays a central role in helping governments accelerate efforts to reach women with essential, lifesaving care. Non-health businesses, including transportation operators, mobile service providers, and financial institutions, also play an important role in facilitating health care.Speakers at the event, moderated by Diane Brady of Bloomberg Businessweek, included Nigerian Minister of Finance Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala; Dr. Flavia Bustreo, Assistant Director-General of the World Health Organization; Sweta Mangal, co-founder and CEO of Ziqitza Health Care Limited, a private ambulance service in India; and Karl Hofmann, CEO of Population Services International (PSI), an NGO that focuses on “social marketing” of family planning and other essential health supplies and services.Jill Sheffield, president of Women Deliver, provided the context for the discussion and introduced Geralyn Ritter, Merck’s Senior Vice President of Public Policy and Corporate Responsibility, who noted the vital, but often overlooked, role that private healthcare providers and health businesses play in delivering health care in local communities. Roughly half of Africans and up to 80% of South Asians now receive care from the private sector, she said; independent midwives, private clinics, and local pharmacies are trusted by the communities they serve, and are key partners in government efforts to improve maternal health. The Merck for Mothers initiative, a 10-year, $500 million initiative to reduce maternal deaths, is working with private providers and health businesses at the local level to ensure that the care they provide is accessible, affordable, and of high quality.Dr. Bustreo, who heads WHO’s programs for Family, Women’s and Children’s Health, described WHO’s work, in partnership with governments and the private sector, to identify and promote innovative solutions to the maternal health challenges faced by countries, health providers, and women. She also highlighted the high cost of maternal health services as a critical barrier that limits women’s access to the services they need, and discussed approaches that countries are using to address it.The Honorable Dr. Okonjo-Iweala, who has served as Nigeria’s Minister of Finance and as its Foreign Minister, and is a former Managing Director of The World Bank, focused on empowering women and girls: “Women are the next emerging market and are a force to reckon with. If we invest in women, we can move the world.”  In Nigeria, she noted, 43% of health care facilities are private, so the government understands the importance of engaging private providers and ensuring that they are appropriately regulated. Scaling up midwifery services is a key to ensuring increased coverage in rural areas, she said, and Nigeria’s conditional cash transfer scheme, which provides women with financial incentives for attending a certain number of antenatal visits, is a key policy for expanding access to care. Dr. Okonjo-Iweala reported that, in the areas where these cash transfers have been offered, there has been a 16% decline in maternal deaths.Karl Hofmann discussed social franchising, a “cousin of social marketing,” as a channel for ensuring that quality services and technologies reach women and their families. Social franchising efforts work to build recognition for providers who serve poor and vulnerable women: a key element of their “brand” is ensuring that all franchisees meet improved service standards and provide good quality care. PSI has, to date, provided support for franchising 10,000 providers in 24 countries; these providers reach 10 million people with essential health care services each year.Sweta Mangal shared Ziqitza Health Care’s experience operating more than 860 advanced and basic life support ambulances across India, filling a gap in government services and increasing access to quality, lifesaving care for poor patients. One-third of Ziqitza’s patients are pregnant women needing transport to health facilities that offer skilled delivery care. In addition, she said, more than 5,000 babies have been born in Ziqitza’s ambulances, since government hospitals are often too overcrowded to immediately accommodate all of the pregnant women who arrive by ambulance.A lively discussion followed these presentations, focusing on how to ensure that private providers and health businesses comply with government regulations and protocols, meet quality standards, and provide services that are affordable and accessible for users from all income levels.At the meeting’s conclusion, Family Care International’s president Ann Starrs referenced recent remarks by Dr. Margaret Chan, Director General of WHO, that universal health coverage is an idea whose time has come. “There is a consensus in most parts of the world that it is the responsibility of governments to ensure that all people have access to basic preventative and curative health care,” she noted. “But that doesn’t mean that governments have to provide those services themselves.” The private sector offers clear advantages, she said, in terms of pioneering innovative approaches, their connection to the community, efficiency and cost-effectiveness, and sustainability. Enabling the private sector to maximize its potential contributions requires governments to provide a normative and regulatory framework to ensure that quality standards are met; financing mechanisms to make services affordable; training and support of private sector providers; and sharing learning, experiences, and evidence. “Partnership,” she said, “is the key.”Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

Tech4MH: Avoiding mHealth “Pilotitis” Doesn’t Mean You Shouldn’t Start Small

first_imgPosted on December 11, 2013November 17, 2016By: Neal Lesh, Chief Strategy Officer, DimagiClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Since 2008, Dimagi has helped organizations in 30 countries set up mobile projects with CommCare, an open source mobile platform that supports frontline workers (FLWs). CommCare is actively being used by over 130 frontline programs across numerous development sectors. One of the most compelling and common uses is to support FLWs who provide vital maternal health services such as registering clients, keeping track of their antenatal care visits, counseling them on the importance of delivery in a facility and calculating due dates of expectant mothers. Thanks to support from USAID’s Development Innovation Ventures, Dimagi will launch at least 40 new frontline programs in 2013 to use CommCare in India alone, a majority of which are focused on maternal health.Technology is never the whole answer, but can be an essential component of empowering FLWs and improving the maternal health services they offer. Our goal is to help frontline programs reach sustained impact at scale by making it as easy as possible to start small while being able to go big. Why start small? Within mHealth, pilots have gotten a bad name. This is for good reason, given the many projects that been declared a success only because they started, regardless of whether they can or do continue. Indeed, many of our partners will tell us that we can start working with a small number of FLWs as long as we don’t call it a pilot.However, mHealth applications, like most technology, take time and field iteration to develop. mHealth is still a young field, and iteration is necessary to develop usable systems. Organizational capacity to utilize mHealth takes time to develop too. Most organizations we work with do not fully appreciate what they are getting into until they’ve used CommCare for a while.One way we make it easy to start small is by, where funding allows, offering Proof of Concept (POC) packages that include 10 free phones and about a month of remote and one-site support from Dimagi’s experienced team. One thing that initially surprised us is how popular the POC packages are. To date, over 68 organizations in 18 countries have started using CommCare through POC packages. We get a large number of applications when we put out RFAs for them, even from huge development organizations with sizeable annual budgets (100 million+). We’ve come to realize that the POC packages are popular because they remove much of the perceived risk for somebody within an organization to initiate an mHealth project.The key thing that allows us to easily start small but go big is that we offer CommCare through a Software as a Service (SaaS) product hosted on our cloud server. All 130 of the frontline programs using CommCare are running on the same platform. Anybody can visit, create an account, and develop their own CommCare application or customize a pre-exisisting application from CommCare Exchange, the first open source mHealth app store.One such example of a customized app is the Reducing Maternal and Newborn Deaths (ReMiND) pregnancy app developed by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in partnership with Dimagi to support the delivery of prenatal and postnatal care in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. Following initial testing and refining with 10 government-selected FLWs, the app has been scaled up to 271 FLWs, who are using audio and visual prompts to systematically counsel and assess women and babies for danger signs. FLW supervisors are also alerted when visits are missed. The latest edition of the ReMiND application also includes customized SMS reminders that target specific clients, based upon computer-detected newborn dangers signs that are gathered from survey answers. The CRS site has become a strong innovation test bed and an increasingly well-known example globally of mHealth as a supportive supervision tool. The project is currently assessing how direct-to-FLW feedback improves FLW motivation and performance.Over the next year, we will be supporting CommCare and MOTECH Suite (an integrated set of tools for FLWs, of which CommCare is one component) in several maternal health programs at large scale in India, Haiti, and other countries. In every case, we will start or have started small, and are very excited to being big.Tech4MH is an ongoing guest blog series curated by MHTF Research Assistant Yogeeta Manglani. If you would like to submit a guest blog post for possible inclusion the series, please email Yogeeta at [email protected] Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

World Malaria Day 2014: Malaria in Pregnancy

first_imgPosted on April 25, 2014November 13, 2014Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Malaria in pregnancy (MiP) is not only a substantial contributor to maternal mortality and morbidity in malaria-endemic regions, but also leads to neonatal mortality, low birth weight babies, spontaneous abortion, stillbirth, premature delivery, and other adverse birth outcomes.In honor of World Malaria Day 2014, we have compiled recent research articles and sources specifically related to malaria in pregnancy.Recent research articles on MIP:Asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum infection is associated with anaemia in pregnancy and can be more cost-effectively detected by rapid diagnostic test than by microscopy in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the CongoMalaria Journal | April 2014Effectiveness of Antenatal Clinics to Deliver Intermittent Preventive Treatment and Insecticide Treated Nets for the Control of Malaria in Pregnancy in Mali: A Household SurveyPLOS ONE |March 2014Immune responses during gestational malaria: a review of the current knowledge and future trend of researchJournal of Infection in Developing Countries | 2014Prevalence of peripheral blood parasitaemia, anaemia and low birthweight among pregnant women in a suburban area in coastal GhanaPan African Medical Journal | January 2014Associations Between Maternal Helminth and Malaria Infections in Pregnancy and Clinical Malaria in the Offspring: A Birth Cohort in Entebbe, UgandaJournal of Infectious Disease | December 2013Find more recent publications here.General resources on malaria and World Malaria Day:Global malaria efforts: Progress made, but challenges loom aheadRoll Back Malaria (pdf)APMEN media release (pdf)For more resources visit our MIP resources page.Join the celebration on Twitter to learn more with the hashtags #WorldMalariaDay and #DefeatMalaria.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

How Differentiation Drives Peer-to-Peer Giving and Crowdfunding Success

first_imgNancy: Is that EIA’s greatest fundraising challenge? Hard to believe, as you have such a unique approach to getting water to people who need it, and so many clear wins to share.David: We do. But even so, like many organizations our challenge is showing the direct connection between EIA and the work of our engineers. Individuals and foundations resist donating for salaries, and other types of operating support.So we have to show donors that their gifts are used for the most crucial resource of all—EIA engineers (vs. typical water fundraising focus on funding wells, pumps, and pipes). Without the engineers, there is no water. Nancy: Tell me about Engineers in Action (EIA) What’s EIA’s focus, and unique approach and impact?David: We hire local engineers and other professionals to work with poor, indigenous villages in Bolivia on their self-determined infrastructure needs such as water, irrigation and sanitation. We then build partnerships with other NGOs, foreign government development agencies working in that country, and local government agencies to fund and build solutions for those needs. When David Stephenson, Founder/Director of Development at Engineers in Action, (EIA) described EIA’s unique fundraising challenges and successful peer-to-peer (P2P) and project-based fundraising campaign, I knew you’d want to hear more.Thanks to David and his colleague, Maria Laura Vargas, for sharing what’s working for EIA: Nancy: So what were the mechanics, e.g. could a donor designate funding to any mix of those elements?David: Donors were invited to one of the three donor pages:  Carani (potable drinking water); Piquinani (irrigation) and/or Machacamarca (sanitation). They could donate to one or more of the projects. Nancy: What features of Network for Good’s fundraising software enabled you to easily launch and manage this campaign?David: Two things:1) First, NFG makes it easy and quick to donate. They helped us develop our donation page.2) We have a difficulty fundraising for general operating unrestricted funds to cover the costs of our engineering staff and office in La Paz. So, we decided to focus this campaign on three of our 20 specific projects so we could personalize it more. And we wanted three different ”types’ of projects: drinking water, sanitation, and irrigation.The heart of our ideas was to give donors a chance to select which project and which project ‘type’ most interested them. Network for Good’s software allowed us to have three separate fundraising pages, with unique pictures and information that described that specific project.We found that some people would donate evenly to all three. However, most donors chose which project most ‘resonated’ with them. We believe this increased the total amount raised. And, surprisingly, it came out relatively even between the three projects. The ability to have three separate fund raising pages, and tracking those donations separately, was critical to our strategy. Nancy: What will you do differently next time?David: We’ll definitely put more emphasis on matching funds and more individualized attention to potential significant donors ($500 or more).Nancy: What’s the most important advice you can share with fundraisers considering launching a short-term (day, few days, week-long) campaign?David: Our most successful short campaign is the Clean Water Fast in which we raised over $60,000 last year with a peer fundraising approach. The difference between the two is that for the Fast, we have 20-25 individuals raising money for their own personalized goals using peer-to-peer fundraising pages.However, Water Week worked beautifully as a secondary campaign. We made it different, and tried our best to connect the donors to the projects themselves. Nancy: Was this your first short-term campaign? If so, why now?David: We’ve gone much shorter! Our biggest fundraiser is the Clean Water Fast, a 36-hour fast from food and drink except water, that we run every Fall. However, we needed to do more fundraising and thought it made sense to balance timing six months out from the Fast, thus EIA Water Week in May. Direct mail didn’t apply in this instance. Nancy: How DO you make that connection?David: Our most successful method is demonstrating the multiplier effect of giving to EIA, like this:Funding an EIA engineer costs about $20,000/yr in salary plus benefits.Every engineer develops six projects over three yearsEach project raises approximately $30,000 to purchase materials that go directly into the community over three years.Each engineer costs EIA $60,000 over three years, but generates $180,000 over that period (or more) in direct impact on the communities where we are working.center_img Nancy: The “self-determined” aspect is so different than most organizations working in developing regions of the world, especially in the water arena. How else does EIA differ from other water organizations; like charity:water?David: We’re unique in hiring local engineers who understand the cultural issues within these communities and who are continuously available to the communities; as opposed to U.S. engineers who are there for only two weeks. Consequently, our projects are much more sustainable.Another unique aspect of our program is the asset-based model we use for project/community selection. Not all local communities are organized and committed enough to maintain, operate and repair a water system. We focus on those who can sustain a system.Nancy: What’s one of your favorite EIA stories?David: I visited Suncallo, a community of 2-300 persons high in the Bolivian Andes about six months after the installation of a water system for the community. The system incorporated a four km-long pipeline from a spring.When I arrived, most of the adults were out in the fields harvesting potatoes. However, school was in session, and I dropped into a class and started talking with the teacher.When I asked him about the impact the water had on the community, he smiled and spoke of the reduction in infant mortality and in student sick days, and his students’ cleanliness now that they used the solar showers that had been built on a regular basis. He told me it was a dramatic increase in the quality of life for the village. What new peer-to-peer or project-based approach will best complement your existing campaigns? Share in the comments below. I hope EIA’s story inspires and guides your organization to its own P2P success. Nancy: With stories like that, getting people to give must be a breeze.David: Not at all, we’re so unique in our structure, and it’s complicated for outside folks to understand, much less prospective donors. Nancy: Wow, that’s incredible. Any other aspects of the Network for Good tools that you found particularly useful?David: I believe that the greatest advantage that Network for Good gives us over other similar programs is an easy way to ask donors if they’d like to cover the 3% donation processing fee.Most online donation services charge similar fees. But by asking the donors to pay for that expense over and above their donation to us, relieves us of the burden of having to pay it. In 2015, 86% of our donors giving through NFG paid those fees for us. And when it was all over, EIA’s out of pocket transaction fees totaled only .4%! This is an incredible help to us and was the equivalent of us adding another ‘Large Donor’ to our list. Nancy: What were the results?David: We raised $23,500. We had 71 donors, 18 of them first-time donors! While we didn’t quite make our arbitrary goal of $30,000 it was still quite successful for us. Nancy: What inspired EIA’s recent Water Week (May 2-9) campaign with specific asks for donations to fund three project types (water, sanitation, irrigation) and  three project costs (engineer salary, admin, transportation)?David: Our challenge is always to show the direct connection of support for EIA engineers and the implementation of a water project in a specific village. We decided to fund EIA’s direct costs for three projects. We wanted to show that the engineer’s salary, administrative costs, and the engineer’s transportation during the assessment and follow-up phases were critical to the project.We analyzed the cost of these three specific costs ($9-12,000 each) and that became our goal. Then, we chose three different types of projects: drinking water, sanitation, and irrigation to allow donors to ‘invest’ in the type of project that meant the most to them.last_img read more

How to Tell Your Nonprofit’s Story

first_imgSometimes the trickiest part of telling your nonprofit’s story is simply getting the order right. Subplots and tangents have a way of derailing a good story and causing your audience to lose interest. But creating a compelling story arc doesn’t have to be difficult. Think back to you high school English classes. It’ll all come back to you in no time!Rise & Fall of a Story ArcStasis—the current situation or status quo.Inciting Incident—the event that forces your protagonist to take action.Rising Action—the period of time between the inciting incident and the climax, when your protagonist is met with more and more obstacles.Climax—the peak, or turning point, of your story; typically where your protagonist faces her or his antagonist, or greatest challenge.Falling Action—following the climax, falling action ties up the loose ends of your story and leads to the resolution.Resolution—the final outcome of your story, when the world establishes a new status quo, or stasis.StasisOnce upon a time. The beginning of any story sets up the current situation and setting. The world is in a state of equilibrium, which has yet to be disturbed. Stasis tells us where we are, what kind of world it is, and who lives here. For example, the opening lines of Romeo and Juliet tells us Shakespeare’s story is going to be about two well-known families in Verona.“Two households, both alike in dignity,In fair Verona, where we lay our scene”Of course, we’ll go on to learn about the family feud and star-crossed lovers; but for now, we just need to set the scene. It can be as literal and matter-of-fact as that. Simple, right?Inciting IncidentWhat forces your main character to take action? In nonprofit storytelling, an inciting incident may be the situation or event you experienced that inspired you to start your organization. It could also be the cause for launching a new program or initiative, hosting a fundraising event, or organizing a community rally. Focus on the emotional response to the experience to create a more powerful connection with your audience.Download our Nonprofit Storytelling Mini-Guide for more insights into telling your organization’s story.Rising ActionThis is the period of time where you build the tension of your story and propel your main character forward as they attempt to reach their goal. It’s also where you introduce the obstacles that stand in your hero’s way. Don’t worry about making this overly dramatic. Everything from building community awareness of an issue to raising funds to launch your nonprofit can be part of your rising action. Make your audience care about what will happen next.ClimaxThe high point, or climax, of your story is what you’ve been driving towards all along. Your hero has met obstacle after obstacle in the pursuit of their goal. The inevitable confrontation between protagonist and antagonist finally comes to a head, and either works out in favor of our main character, or ends in misfortune. Either way, your audience feels a sense of catharsis.Falling ActionFollowing the climax, all of the pieces of your story are wrapped up in order to give your audience a sense of closure and accomplishment.ResolutionWe’ve now created a new status quo; a new stasis. The story has come full circle, and we enter a new state of equilibrium.For nonprofits, the story doesn’t end here. Once you’ve shared your story with your audience, what do you want them to do? Now that you’ve captured their hearts and minds, give them a clear call to action to respond to—as a donor, volunteer, or advocate.Download our Nonprofit Storytelling Mini-Guide for more insights into telling your organization’s story.last_img read more