Track and compare year-end giving

first_imgNetwork for Good is once again providing year-end giving data for The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s 2013 Year-End Online Giving Tracker. You can use this resource to see how online giving is stacking up each day of December and to compare those numbers with the last few years. To supply the data for the tracker, we looked at a set of 14,300 charities who received donations through Network for Good’s online giving platform. You can view this data by month, by week, or look at the entire span of information from November 1st through the end of the year. Check it out by visiting The Chronicle’s site, and let us know how the trends compare to your own year-end fundraising results.last_img

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7 Ways to Make This Year the Year of the Donor

first_imgThe good news is that giving continues to grow. The bad news is that donor retention rates aren’t what they should be. Think about the donors who came into your organization’s ecosystem during the past year. Will they give again?You can improve the odds of keeping more of your supporters by declaring this year the Year of the Donor. What this looks like for your organization may be different than for your nonprofit peers, but here are a few basics to get you started:1. Have a solid plan.The biggest way to ensure your donors remain your top priority is to create a well-organized plan for cultivating your organization’s supporters throughout the year.To do: Create a comprehensive donor stewardship plan that complements your overall marketing strategy and retention goals. Your plan should include a timeline, messaging guidelines, and who will be responsible for each component of your donor outreach. For more planning tips, take a look at Network for Good’s donor stewardship checklist.2. Send an amazing thank you.Of course you’re thanking all your donors. Right? (Right?) But are you making it an amazing experience of effusive gratitude? Is your thank you so awesome that donors will tell their friends all about it? Even tell strangers? If not, there’s always room for improvement. Your goal: Express to impress!To do: Take the time to write a series of really great donor thank you letters. Make them personal, memorable, and full of gratitude. Your thank you letters should reinforce the projected impact of a donor’s gift and open the door for an ongoing relationship. If possible, hire a professional copywriter to polish your thank yous.3. Keep the conversation going.Your thank you note is really just the start of a new conversation with your donor. Keep this conversation flowing by updating your supporters on your work and how their gift has helped make it possible. Update supporters on what’s new in your community, your work, and how they can continue to be involved. As you build on this communication, you’ll have earned the opportunity to invite them to give again.To do: Create an editorial calendar to plan your outreach and news you’d like to share. Use your email marketing tools to segment your lists so you can separate donors from those who’ve yet to give. Communicate to these two groups differently when sending updates to tailor your message to reflect donors’ special status.4. Clearly articulate your impact.One of the main reasons donors don’t go on to give a second gift is because they’re not sure how their money was used to create real impact. It’s your job to make sure supporters know exactly how their gift is being used and how it makes a difference. Get in the habit of making this a part of everything you do—from fundraising appeals to your monthly newsletter.To do: Illustrate a donation’s impact through photos, testimonials, and quantifiable results that are easy for donors to understand. Incorporate these elements in every piece of donor communication you send. Build a collection of stories that are organized by program or locality so you can easily match these with the profiles of your donors.5. Invite donors for their feedback.More and more donors don’t want to just give and run—they want to be an active part of your cause. Because they’ve been moved enough to donate, they can offer valuable insight on what went into their decision and how you can continue to reach them and others in their network.To do: Regularly invite your donors to provide you with feedback. Add this to your donor thank you phone script and conduct periodic donor surveys to collect their input on everything from your newsletter content to how you contact them. Making them feel more invested in your work will bring donors even closer to your organization.6. Regularly test and improve.It takes a lot of work to acquire new donors, so it’s crucial that you do everything you can to keep the ones you’ve got. One way to do this is to find and fix any leaks in your process. Once you’ve fixed the obvious problems, optimize your donor retention strategy by testing new messages and acknowledgement techniques.To do: Track and measure every interaction with your donors. If you don’t have Google Analytics on your nonprofit website or donation form, that’s one place to start. Identify where donors may be falling off by looking at your website bounce rate, form abandonment, and email unsubscribes. Use A/B testing to see which calls to action and content types work best for your audience.7. Create feel-good moments.Everyone gives for different reasons, but we all want to feel good about our charitable gifts. To keep this positive vibe flowing, it’s important to create moments of connection and with your donors. Ronald McDonald House Charities does just that with this simple thank you video that puts the donor at the center of the experience and in the embrace of those who feel the impact of their donations every day:To do: Commit to making your ongoing donor outreach unique and personal. Get creative with photos, video, and perks for your donors to help your cause stay top of mind. Recruit volunteers and beneficiaries to help keep your communications authentic and original. (Want more ideas on using images to stand out? Read these 10 ways nonprofits can use visuals.)How will you make this year the Year of the Donor? I’d love to hear your plans, and I know your donors can’t wait to see what happens next.last_img read more

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Social Media Content Is Sitting Right in Front of You

first_imgContent for your social media channels is sitting right in front of you. Really! Your website, donor appeals, and newsletters are just waiting to be translated into a Facebook post, tweet, or YouTube video. Repurposing content can take some time, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll start thinking of ideas to feed your social channels in your sleep. To help get your creative juices flowing, here are some quick tips and content ideas for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram: Try experimenting with videos and picture slideshows. Quick tips: Do share candid images. Don’t share stock photos. Ideas for posts: Quick tips: Don’t be afraid to retweet. Share content that is relevant to your audience. Repurpose a success story from an appeal letter. Do some research on hashtags. Does your issue area or local community have a hashtag? Post images of your team prepping for an event. Ideas for posts: Twitter Quick tips: Invite people to join your email list. Think visual. Studies show that posts with images perform much better than posts without. Post a photo from an past year’s event for #tbt (Throwback Thursday). Which posts have done well in the past? Try to repeat what works well but with a fresh twist. Facebook Share opinion pieces from your staff or experts from your issue area. Even more than on Twitter, hashtags can help you connect with new audiences. Share stats from your annual report. Instagram Don’t be afraid to be fun. Organizations are made up of people, and your Facebook fans know that. Step outside the box every once in a while and let your personality shine. Create an image of your mission statement. (We like Canva for projects like this.) Share a photo of your volunteers in action. Post pics of the thank you notes your organization sends (or receives). Live tweet an event, rally, or staff luncheon. Share a glimpse into the day-to-day life of staff, clients, and volunteers. Remind everyone what a $25 donation will accomplish. Ideas for posts: Follow back. You can’t have a conversation if you aren’t following your followers. Get more ideas (101, in fact!) for social media posts by downloading 101 Social Media Posts and watching our archived webinar The Art of Social Media, with social media expert and author Guy Kawasaki. And if you aren’t following us on our favorite social channels, what are you waiting for? TwitterFacebookInstagramlast_img read more

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A New View of Grant Resources

first_imgA truly sustainable funding model is the holy grail of nonprofits. A great way to achieve that goal is by making sure you have a diversified revenue stream that includes individual donations, fees for service, and grant funding. A healthy organization can stack up these funding sources for a strong foundation that supports their mission. Grant seekers ask us for lots of advice, so we chatted with Cynthia Adams, president and CEO of GrantStation and a longtime friend of Network for Good, about a new way of approaching grant funding, including a recently launched resource called the PathFinder.NFG: Cynthia, what have you found to be the biggest hurdle for nonprofits looking to secure grants?Cynthia Adams: Actually, there are three significant hurdles. First you have to thoroughly identify what you need the funding for, which isn’t as simple as it sounds! Second, you have to identify the right grant makers to approach for the funding. And third, you need the skills to develop and write compelling grant requests.Most organizations are familiar with the tried-and-true grant makers, but what are some overlooked sources of grant funding?CA: I am very fond of looking outside the box when identifying potential funders for a project. For example, I like to look at national and international associations. These groups, especially those associations representing companies that manufacture goods, can often be fabulous sources of support. The Toy Industry Association offers literally thousands of donated toys via the Toy Industry Foundation.What do you recommend to organizations that don’t have someone on staff who can take on researching, applying for, and managing grants? Does this require a full-time person?CA: It depends on the size of the organization and the number of grant proposals you expect to submit. At GrantStation, we’ve just launched a new free resource called the PathFinder. It includes tons of resources in a searchable database to help everyone from novices to the most experienced individual in the areas of grant research, grant writing, and grant management.We talk a lot about storytelling and reporting on impact for individual donors. Where does this fit in with grant funding?CA: Storytelling is an integral part of the grant-writing process. You want to engage the person reviewing your proposal right off the bat, so opening your request with a true-life story is a great way to do that. I often include a case study or “story” in the statement of need as well.What’s the smartest way for fundraisers to combine grant funding with making the most of gifts from individual donors?CA: I had this rule of thumb when I was working as a development director for nonprofits: I would use any significant gift from an individual to leverage any grant proposal I was working on. So, if someone came by and made a $1,000 gift, and I was working on a proposal to upgrade all the office equipment, website, etc., I would ask that donor if I could use their gift to help leverage the grant. It worked for me!Thank you so much, Cynthia, for sharing your insights on new ways to approach grant funding. For more help with expanding your funding base with grants, download our archived webinar with Cynthia Adams, Getting Started with Grants: How to Make Your Requests Shine.last_img read more

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What’s Missing from Your Small Nonprofit’s Fundraising Plan

first_imgThe secret to better campaign results, more engaged donors, and board buy-in is a thoughtful and clear fundraising plan. While we all know we need a plan, sometimes it’s not always easy to make time to create a realistic plan and in many cases, we may not have the information we need to make the right strategic decisions. If you’re like most small nonprofits, it’s likely that your plan is missing a critical element—clean, accurate fundraising data.Your Fundraising Plan Must Be Based on Accurate Fundraising DataHaving the right data on your campaign performance, funding sources, donor history, and giving patterns will allow you to make smarter decisions on how to spend your time and resources going forward. Why is this so important?You’ll know what’s working, and what’s not.Sounds obvious, right? But most nonprofits are surprised when they see their aggregated fundraising results and campaign data. As trends emerge, you can make better decisions on what to do more of…and what to stop doing in the coming year. You can double down on the tactics and messages that work best for your supporters.You can identify donor segments and create strategies for them.Once you understand who your new, major, recurring, lapsed, and event donors are, you can develop tailored outreach to best reach and convert them. (Just getting started with donor segmentation? We have a simple planning template that will help you maximize your communications.)You’ll have more credibility with your board.You can feel more confident presenting your plan to your board when you have the data to back it up vs. relying on a hunch or opinions. Having a data-backed plan will also help you answer questions and fend off “creative tinkering” from well-meaning board members.You’ll know what you need to spend to meet your fundraising goals.Armed with the data about your past fundraising results and donor opportunities, you can project how much you’ll need to spend (and which resources to allocate) to make the plan happen.Need some help getting a better fundraising plan in place and figuring out how to collect, compile, and understand the data you need? Check out this upcoming webinar to learn simple steps for quickly creating a solid plan that will allow you to reach your small nonprofit’s funding goals this year.Register for this webinar now and learn How to Create Your 12-Month Fundraising Plan!last_img read more

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The Global Stage Needs a Global Audience

first_img ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on January 23, 2014November 7, 2016By: Lennie Kamwendo, White Ribbon Alliance Global Board MemberClick 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)As we approach the 2015 deadline for the Millennium Development Goals, what does the future hold for international maternal mortality targets? The MHTF is pleased to be hosting a blog series on post-2015 maternal mortality goal setting. Over the next several weeks, we will be featuring responses and reactions to proposed targets from around the world. Please share your thoughts with us!The importance of the global attention that maternal health was given when world leaders recognised that MDG5 was (and still is) the most offtrack goal of all is evident. The $70bn pledged since 2010 to ‘The Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health’ is pivotal in the history of maternal, newborn and child health, and pledges which may not have been made without the broad MDG target and tracking of progress. We, as advocates for maternal and newborn health welcomed this fantastic news – finally women’s childbirth rights were being prioritised – but we know the real work comes when pushing for these promises to be delivered.Indeed, a main challenge that civil society faces when pushing for such promises to be delivered is just how much any of these commitments are discussed in our parliaments and our media. Targets are useful, and absolute targets relative to the reality in the country are even more useful. As we move towards the deadline of the MDGs, we have lessons to learn from blanket targets being set in the international arena with little regard for whether they are attainable in the country. When targets are obviously not going to be achieved it can be demoralizing, even when progress is being made. Perhaps this is a contributory reason as to why accountability is so low on the commitments our governments make on the international stage. The targets are unattainable as are the promises made on how to achieve them, creating a cyclical process of underachievement.The general consensus in Malawi is that our politicians, for the most part, are not even aware of the promises made on their behalf. Our President has been a champion for maternal health and has made impressive commitments to Malawi’s women and children, ensuring free care, strengthening of human resources for health and attaining the WHO standard for emergency obstetric care. Yet there are no numerical targets attached to these commitments, no clear plan as to how they will be achieved and weak accountability at the national level on commitments made. As a Global Board member of The White Ribbon Alliance, I am consistently hearing the same story from our members in many other countries where maternal deaths are high. Perhaps 2014 will see a tangible balance between targeted creation of demand for skilled care for childbearing women and the supply of all the necessary aspects of maternity care. We need the full package from adequate, well qualified and competent human resource to an enabling environment for the provision of quality care.Targets are important. Commitments are encouraging. But we need the international community to invest in building civil society’s capacity to call their leaders and governments to account on making these promises a reality. Now is the time to build on the targets already set and drive home that unmet promises are not acceptable. We know change can happen when civil society pushes for accountability. The global stage needs a global audience.Share this:last_img read more

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How to Avoid Predatory Journals: A Five Point Plan

first_imgPosted on January 28, 2015May 9, 2017By: Jocalyn Clark, Executive Editor, Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition at icddr,bClick 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)Increasingly, I’m asked to advise and assist with the problem of predatory journals. While it’s probably only an annoying nuisance to many in the developed world, the increasing number of spam emails inviting articles and conference participation is beginning to feel like a potentially serious problem for developing world scientists and institutions. This demands action, as Richard Smith and I argue in a recent editorial in The BMJ.That’s because these countries’ relative lack of development also extends, unsurprisingly, to scholarly publishing. Whereas in rich country institutions we would have training, supervision, and support that generate a level of literacy to discern predatory versus legitimate journals, this is often missing or nascent in developing country institutions. As a recent paper shows, the majority of authors in predatory journals are inexperienced and based in developing countries.Predatory journals (a term first coined by librarian Jeffrey Beall) are fake or scam journals that send phishing emails offering “open access” publication in exchange for payment, without providing robust editorial or publishing services. They have been discredited by the scientific community, and because they are not indexed in standard databases any research published in them is effectively lost. Their motive is financial gain, and their modus operandi is a corruption of the business model of legitimate open access publishing.Many organisations and universities around the world are facing this problem, but it appears predatory publishers may be particularly targeting institutions in the global south.I’m struck by how many more spam emails from predatory publishers I get to my Bangladesh institutional email than I do to my Canadian academic account. In a recent seven day trial, I received 14 predatory journal spam emails to my icddr,b account and six to my University of Toronto account; a colleague at Harvard in the same period got just two.This can’t be explained by inadequate junk mail filters, as the system we use at my organisation in Bangladesh is an industry standard.I recommend a five point plan for researchers to avoid predatory journals, which involves “doing your homework” to check the credibility of a journal or publisher, and always being sceptical of unknown journals. To distinguish legitimate from predatory journals, here are some useful sources of information—none of which are adequate on their own:Is the journal or publisher listed in Beall’s List? If so, it should be avoided, as this “blacklist” is regularly updated and specifies criteria for identifying predatory journals and publishers.If claiming to be an open access journal, is the journal in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)? This is a sort of “whitelist,” and journals here must meet specific criteria.Is the publisher a member of recognised professional organisations that commit to best practices in publishing, such as the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE); the International Association of Scientific, Technical, & Medical Publishers (STM); or the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA)?Is the journal indexed? Do not accept the journal’s claims about being indexed. Instead verify these claims by searching for the journal in databases such as PubMedCentral (free) or the Web of Science (requiring subscription).Is the journal transparent and following best practices when it comes to editorial and peer review processes, governance, and ownership? Are there contact details for the journal and its staff (email, postal address, working telephone number)? Reputable journals have a named editor and editorial board comprised of recognised experts. Are the costs associated with publishing clear? Credible journals do not ask for a submission fee. Many bona fide open access journals require a publication charge, but this is levied after acceptance and through a process separate from the editorial process.To help with “doing your homework” authors can consult new guidance from COPE, which—along with the DOAJ, OASPA, and the World Association of Medical Editors—has set out principles of transparency and best practice that set apart legitimate journals and publishers from “non-legitimate” ones.These sources of information can help any researcher struggling to avoid predatory journals, but should supplement rather than supplant extensive discussions among co-authors about the right and reputable target journals for their papers.In addition, those of us who collaborate with and advocate health research from developing countries should lend our support to colleagues, especially junior colleagues, to spread publication literacy and to fight against the predatory journals.This post originally appeared on BMJ Blogs.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

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Video: Segmenting Donors for Better Engagement

first_imgIf you’re just getting started with donor segmentation, or need new ideas on how to segment donors for better outreach, our Donor Segmentation Cheat Sheet offers great tips on how to generate donor lists by giving level, donation date, and campaign fund. Use the template to record your donor totals, date of list, and any notes for data analysis. Getting to know your donors takes a little extra effort; but you’ll see the benefits in engagement levels, donor retention, and ROI. Donor segmentation is an essential part of every fundraiser’s work. Segmenting is the first step to knowing your donors better. Grouping donors by certain criteria or segments gives you a better idea of who is in your donor management system based on giving habits, location, involvement, and more.Segmentation not only tells you who is in your system, but also helps you send relevant, personal communications to each group of donors. From your e-newsletter to your direct mail appeals, you can never segment your audience too much. The more personal you can make your outreach, the more your supporters will feel connected to your work.At Network for Good, we encourage the same approach in getting to know your donors, volunteers, and other supporters. Network for Good’s donor management system helps nonprofits quickly and confidently target their donors with the right appeal, and send it out at the right time. Read more on The Nonprofit Bloglast_img read more

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New Drug Shows Promise in Preventing One of the Most Common Causes of Maternal Death

first_imgPosted on July 12, 2018July 27, 2018By: Kayla McGowan, Project Coordinator, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthClick 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)A large randomized trial conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO) has found that heat-stable carbetocin is as safe and effective as oxytocin in preventing postpartum hemorrhage (PPH)—excessive bleeding after childbirth and one of the leading causes of global maternal deaths. This is a critical finding given that oxytocin, the current standard therapy for preventing PPH, requires storage and transport conditions that are often not accessible in low-resource settings. The new formula of carbetocin used in the study does not require refrigeration and lasts for at least three years when stored at higher, more humid temperatures.Researchers randomized nearly 30,000 women from 23 sites in Argentina, Egypt, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, Uganda and the United Kingdom to receive a muscular injection of either heat-stable carbetocin or oxytocin immediately after vaginal delivery. They then measured the proportion of women with blood loss of at least 500 milliliters or the use of additional uterotonic agents as well as the proportion of women with blood loss of at least 1000 milliliters at one hour and up to two hours after birth for women who continued to bleed after one hour. Results indicated no significant differences in blood loss among women who had received the heat-stable carbetocin compared to those who had received oxytocin.The researchers noted that since both oxytocin and carbetocin were maintained in low temperatures needed to ensure oxytocin’s efficacy, the results may underestimate the benefits of heat-stable carbetocin in real-life settings where higher temperatures may compromise the quality of oxytocin.According to leaders at WHO:“This is a truly encouraging new development that can revolutionize our ability to keep mothers and babies alive.”—Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO“The development of a drug to prevent postpartum haemorrhage that continues to remain effective in hot and humid conditions is very good news for the millions of women who give birth in parts of the world without access to reliable refrigeration.”—Dr. Metin Gülmezoglu, from the Department of Reproductive Health and Research at WHONext stepsThese findings represent a critical development in preventing the most common direct cause of maternal death around the world, with next steps including regulatory review and approval by countries. WHO’s Guideline Development Group will be considering whether to include heat-stable carbetocin as a recommended drug for PPH prevention.—Read the full news release from WHO>> Access the full study>>Read more about preventing postpartum hemorrhage>>What else is needed to ensure that no woman dies from postpartum hemorrhage, a preventable cause of maternal death? We’d love to hear from you!Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

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The Latest Macron takes part in wreathlaying in Germany

first_imgFRANKFURT — The Latest on the French president’s visit to Germany (all times local):1 p.m.French President Emmanuel Macron has taken part in a wreath-laying ceremony at Germany’s memorial to the victims of war and dictatorship.Macron stood with folded hands and bowed head alongside German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Frank-Walter Steinmeier at the Neue Wache memorial in Berlin as part of a national day of remembrance.Macron is visiting as both he and Merkel are lagging in the polls and need some mutual reinforcement and support.Merkel has backed Macron’s proposal for a European army someday, saying it would show the world that there will never again be war between European nations. The two are meeting before a December summit intended to decide limited reforms of the shared euro currency to make it more resistant to financial and economic crises.___8:40 a.m.French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, both limping in the polls, are looking for common approaches to Donald Trump and fixing the flaws in the euro currency.Macron speaks in the German parliament in Berlin on Sunday on an annual day of remembrance for victims of war and dictatorship, a week after the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, and then consults with Merkel on European and international issues.Merkel last week echoed Macron’s call for a European army, a long-term prospect that drew tweeted criticism of Macron from Trump. Merkel said a European force would save money and agreed with Macron that Europe must be able to defend itself on its own. The two also face a December summit on limited reforms to the euro currency.The Associated Presslast_img read more

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Centennial Park playground now open to the public

first_imgTo view more on Capital Projects, CLICK HERE Ryan Harvey, Communications Director for the City of Fort St. John shares the Parkour Park will open later this week.“We want to remind people that the majority of the park is still under construction and ask that they stay out of the construction zones,” said Harvey.The budget for the project was $5.5 million for the redevelopment of the park to facilitate a new permanent stage, picnic shelter, a pedestrian walkway, formal garden, washroom, and two playgrounds. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The new playground at Centennial Park is now open to the public for use.last_img

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J&K: Over 55 security men already dead, 95 died in 2019

first_imgNew Delhi: It’s not even three months of this year and body count of soldiers has been steadily rising in Jammu and Kashmir to make it one one of the most violent periods in recent times.The Army alone has lost 10 men, five of them before the tragic car bombing in Pulwama killing 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) troopers on February 14. Since Pulwama, five more Army men and eight other security personnel have died.Last year was one of the bloodiest for the security forces as around 100 of them were killed. The number has crossed 55 in the first two months of this year. Also Read – Squadrons which participated in Balakot air strike awarded citations on IAF DayBut the number of terrorists killed in operations is also rising. Till February 14, 28 terrorists were killed and another 16 have been eliminated after Pulwama.Reflecting in the tough times and extremely tense situation is the stark rise in ceasefire violations on the Line of Control (LoC).There were 267 ceasefire violations before February 14 and since then 228 of such breaches have been reported, signalling that the guns have been blazing across the border. Also Read – SC declines Oil Min request to stay sharing of documents on Reliance penaltyComparisons are being drawn with 2018 which saw security forces scoring major successes against terrorists killing 260 of them, including some big names such as Lashkar-Taiba head Naveed Jatt. The number of kills in 2018 was the highest in eight years. The last major successful year was 2010 when 270 terrorists were killed.2011 saw 119 killing, 2012 saw 84, 110 in 2014, 113 in 2015, 165 in 2016 and 218 in 2017.The number of security forces killed in 2018 was 95 while 83 had died in 2017.According to south Asia terrorism portal, 56 security personnel have died in Jammu and Kashmir this year and 44 terrorists have been killed.last_img read more

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Culinary Art India: Budding chefs take the spotlight

first_imgOne of the most loved food-related festivals, Culinary Art India, is known for its thrilling competitions among the chefs. The four-day event saw over 500 chefs from across the country participating in various activities and competitions. It not only welcomed the professional chefs to showcase their creative culinary skills, but also gave a platform to housewives as well as students to put their best foot forward.First day of event saw 45 chefs demonstrating their culinary expertise and competing in Authentic Indian Regional Cuisine, Fruit and Vegetable Carving and Live Cooking category. Second day saw Petit Fours and Pralines, Artistic Bakery Showpiece along with Three Tier Wedding Cake prepration. On the third day, 57 chefs exhibited their artistic side in the categories of Artistic Pastry Showpiece, Plated Appetizers, Live cooking and Contemporary Sushi Platter. On the fourth and last day of culinary challenge, 82 chefs competed in three competetd in Three course set dinner, Plated Desserts, Mocktails and Live cooking. “The culinary art India has been in existence for 14 years and the objective of this event was to create a platform where students, fellow chefs, professionals, can display their culinary skills, and get rewarded. The festival give them the necessary exposure and groom them to compete at the global level,” said Davinder Kumar, President of Indian Culinary Forum, adding, “The response from the audience as well as participants has been phenomenal this year. We have witnessed a large number of entries by college students, who were confident about their work at such a young age.” A visual treat for foodies, culinary artistry attracted a lot of crowd across all ages, however, youngsters – with high ambitions of making big in the culinary and hotel industry – were seen at large throughout the festival. One such student of hotel management, who also won the first prize for ‘plated dessert competition’, finds solace in baking. Speaking about his love for cooking, he said, “I am a first year student of International Institute of Culinary art. Though I enjoy every aspect of cooking, baking is something that fills me with happiness and joy. I want to get specialised in the art of baking and learn as much as I can. For this competition, I tried to give my 100 percent and bring up something new for the jury. I got four ingredients with which I prepared four different recipes in the ‘Plated dessert competition’, and won gold for the same,” said 19-year-old student, Nikhil Bhatia.last_img read more

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State to install new statue after Vidyasagar bust was desecrated by BJP workers: Partha

first_imgKolkata: The state government will install a new statue of Pandit Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar at Vidyasagar College, Partha Chatterjee, the state Education minister, said on Friday.The statue of Vidyasagar was vandalised by BJP workers after the roadshow of Amit Shah passed through Bidhan Sarani on Tuesday evening. While some BJP workers broke open the lock of the main gate of the college, others scaled the wall and entered the college premises and then smashed the half bust statue of Vidyasagar. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaIt may be mentioned that Narendra Modi while addressing a gathering in Uttar Pradesh on Thursday said the Centre will install a statue of Vidyasagar made of “panch dhatu” in the college. Reacting to his statement, Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee said on Thursday that the state government will install the statue on its own and does not need any help from Modi. Chatterjee also said the state government will set up a museum on Vidyasagar but did not specify where it would come up. It may be mentioned that the house of Vidyasagar in Badurbagan off Amherst Street has been maintained and the table he used to write on, the bench where he used to sit have been preserved. Also, the letter written by him to Kadambini Ganguly, the first Bengali graduate in 1886 who later became the first Indian doctor and received training in England, has also been preserved. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayHe said the state government has chalked up an elaborate scheme to observe the bicentenary of Vidyasagar. It has also been decided that Barna Parichay which he wrote for children to get them acquainted with Bengali alphabets, will be distributed free of cost among children. Chatterjee added that after the Mamata Banerjee government came to power in 2011, the birth anniversaries of the great sons of Bengal are being observed in a befitting manner. The 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda and Dwijendra Lal Roy had been observed. Chatterjee said the ancestral house of Vidyasagar at Birsingha village in Midnapore has been renovated. Vidyasagar had played a major role to spread education among women and widow remarriage. For children, he wrote Barna Parichay, Kathamala and Betal Panchabingsati. Michael Madhusudan Dutt, one of his close friends, wrote about him “The man to whom I have appealed has the genius and wisdom of an ancient sage, the energy of an Englishman and the heart of a Bengali mother.”last_img read more

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CubsIndians Is A Throwback World Series Matchup

But take heart, Indians fans — World Series upsets appear to happen more frequently than basic Elo would predict. Based on the pre-Series probabilities I crunched, the favorite would have been expected to win the World Series 54 times in 90 tries since 1925, for a predicted winning percentage of 60 percent. In reality, however, favorites won only 49 times over that span, for a success rate of 54 percent. Whether that’s because basic Elo can’t pick up on the differences between regular-season and playoff baseball,5Such as shorter rotations and shallower bullpens, both of which favor underdogs with more star pitchers than depth. I’m not certain. But it is a sign that the Series might be more competitive than Chicago’s 60.3 percent win probability indicates.That’s bad news for anxious Cubs fans hoping to end a 108-year championship drought. But it’s good for Cleveland, as well as agnostic observers (such as myself) who want the baseball season to last as long as it can. In a departure from the past few World Series, this year’s contest between the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians contains two teams that were both: a) highly regarded before the season began and b) played well for most of the year.1The 2015 Mets and the 2014 Royals each flirted with .500 on their way to the World Series, and expectations for the 2013 Red Sox were low after a terrible 2012 season. (No flukes here!) The average of the teams’ pre-Series Elo ratings — a measure of a team’s strength at any given time2Specifically, the simple version of Elo found in our Complete History Of MLB interactive, which doesn’t account for starting pitchers, travel distance or rest days when assessing each matchup. — ranks ninth among the 22 World Series matchups since the wild card era began in 1995 and 37th out of the 91 since the current 2-3-2 best-of-seven World Series format was adopted in 1925.3Before 1925, the World Series format was either best of seven with home-field advantage for seventh games determined by coin flip or best of nine, so there wasn’t a common format to be readily compared with modern series. In other words, it’s a solid matchup.And how about competitiveness? For each World Series since 1925, I plugged the teams’ pre-Series Elo ratings into a best-of-seven probability formula and calculated each club’s odds of winning the Series. Chicago’s win probability of 60.3 percent in FiveThirtyEight’s basic Elo model4Which, again, differs slightly from the 63 percent figure in our interactive graphic, which uses the more complete model. is larger than the average for favorites since 1925 (59.5 percent) and for favorites since 1995 (57.8 percent). So this series is more lopsided than the typical championship matchup — as you might expect when one of the top couple dozen teams of all time is involved.All told, though, 2016 is a pretty middle-of-the-pack World Series. Literally so, if we plot out the two metrics mentioned above for every matchup since 1925: VIDEO: Cleveland fooled us twice read more

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Baseball Full circle for Nanci Coolen on Ohio State Senior Day

Bo Coolen (center) walks with his mom Nanci (right), sister Demi (left) and father (back) to be honored before the start of Ohio State’s game against Purdue on Sunday, May 13, 2018. Nanci brought lei for all the moms of graduating seniors, all the players, coaches and coaches’ wives. Credit: Edward Sutelan | Editor-in-ChiefThere seemed to be only one way to truly send out the seniors on Ohio State’s baseball team.Give everyone a lei.At least, that’s what Nanci Coolen thought. The mother of senior first baseman Bo Coolen thought the best way to honor her son would be to bring some of his home state culture up to him. She said lei are given out for everything just like “giving a birthday card for a birthday gift” for everything from weddings, retirements, birthdays or graduations.She had to order them all only a couple days in advance because as real lei, made from purple orchid, they would wilt after too long.So she bought 30 lei and had them all shipped to Columbus. A lei for each player, mother, coach and coach’s wife. It wasn’t enough just to have one for the players and coaches. After all, it wasn’t just Senior Day for Ohio State. It was Mother’s Day.“Oh it’s perfect,” Demi Coolen, Nanci’s daughter said. “Two birds, one stone, our whole family gets to be together and celebrate both of their days.”Ohio State made sure to celebrate both days in style, sending Bo and his family out happy with a dominant 16-6 win against Purdue to give the Buckeyes the series victory and clinch a spot in the Big Ten tournament.It’s a particularly special day for the whole family. Nanci, a P.E. and health teacher at Punahou School, has been in Columbus since March — she’s lived in a pair of AirBnBs during her three-month stay — finishing up work on a sabbatical while Bo plays for Ohio State. Bob, her husband, has been back in Honolulu, Hawaii, coaching the Hawaii softball team and Demi has been working as an engineer for Boeing.It’s the first time the whole family has been together since Christmas.“It’s just great because we don’t always get to be together,” Nanci said. “But for that to happen on Mother’s Day in Columbus, to culminate, the whole thing is amazing. And then we’re actually going after the game to Eddie George’s [Grille] because that’s where they took him on his recruiting trips, so full circle and we haven’t been yet.”Nanci Coolen and her daughter Demi cheer on Nanci’s son, senior first baseman Bo Coolen, as he bats during the third inning of Ohio State’s game against Purdue on Sunday, May 13, 2018. Credit: Edward Sutelan | Editor-in-Chief——“Let’s get a hit here, Bo-Bo!” Nanci screams from her picnic table down the third base-line as her son steps into the batter’s box in the third inning of Sunday’s game, her last chance to watch her son play at Bill Davis Stadium.This isn’t something unusual for Bo, a role player with a .209 batting average in 29 games, and he said he’s gotten used to it. In fact, he welcomes it. She was only able to attend two of his games during his first year at Ohio State in 2017 after he transferred from Cypress College. He said after a year watching the other players greet their mothers down the sideline after the games ended, it was a comforting feeling to have her there because “I got to go hug someone.”She did not always welcome him with hugs though. Other times, he was met with critiques. After starting Wednesday against Campbell, Coolen came away hitless with an 0-for-3 night. As he was leaving with senior designated hitter and fellow Cypress College transfer Noah McGowan, Bo said his mother had some things to say. She questioned why he took so many pitches during his at-bats.“Mom, it was a good pitch, I don’t know what you want me to do,” Bo recalled saying. “Well, I want you swinging at everything whether it’s a strike or not,” she responded. Since then, Bo said he has taken a much more aggressive approach to the plate.Senior first baseman Bo Coolen takes a swing at a pitch during the third inning of Ohio State’s game against Purdue on Sunday, May 13, 2018. Credit: Edward Sutelan | Editor-in-ChiefAs a coach’s wife and former softball player, Nanci is no stranger to providing this type of feedback. Bob said she is often hanging around the Hawaii softball team, not just providing them with someone to talk with for life advice, but someone to talk with about the game. Bob said she has helped inspire in his players a mental toughness that he often has trouble relaying.“She becomes not a mother-figure, but a real figure for the young ladies that I have that they can talk to her and she’s so chipper and cheery and positive and it just was tough not having her around for my whole season,” Bob said. “She was there in Vegas when we played and we did well, we ended up going 5-2 and then after that it went all downhill.”——Moving to Columbus from Hawaii in March, Nanci had a bit of an adjustment period.March in Hawaii is warm weather. Surely, Columbus couldn’t be too much worse, right?So Nanci came without any big jackets, assuming that whatever cold she might be initially greeted with would change before too long.It did not. Bo had warned her. “Mom, the heavier the better,” he remembered telling her. Without any winter clothing, Nanci was forced to borrow some of Bo’s until eventually she went with him to buy  “some puffy coats” and “some real winter boots,” Bo said.But the one thing Nanci enjoyed about the weather that she hadn’t seen much in Hawaii was a real change of season. The transition from the winter to the spring was fun to watch, she said.“I saw the leaves come up and the green and all of that,” Nanci said. “It’s just been fabulous.”Still, Nanci has tried to go out and enjoy all the city has to offer. And that “big-city element” was one of the biggest reasons Bo wanted to come to Ohio State. She said he never wanted to go to a small school. He wanted to go to a big school that had a football team and where he could really enjoy the college experience.He didn’t get that in his first year at Pepperdine, so his mom advised him to go to junior college and try for a bigger school. That sophomore year when he was being recruited by other schools, Bo received offers from plenty of smaller schools. She said he continued to put off his decision until eventually Ohio State sent an offer his way.She remembers him saying that it was his “perfect dream school.”But for the family, it meant Bo would be much farther away from home. This was sort of the expectation, Nanci said. Most kids from Hawaii leave for the mainland at some point. She had already gone through it once with Demi leaving for the University of Southern California and Bo had already spent two years on the mainland.This would be the furthest from home he had been, however. Bo said it’s a three-stop process to get to Columbus from Hawaii: fly six hours to California, another three to Chicago or Texas and then a couple more hours to Columbus. In total, Nanci said it’s about $1,000 to fly one person to and from Hawaii. One time, Nanci tried to shorten the number of stops Bo had to make on his return trip home. She had him go from Columbus to Newark, New Jersey, and then straight to Honolulu. That flight from Newark was 12 1/2 hours.“Don’t ever do that again,” Bo told his mom.——-When Senior Day finally arrived, Bo had started to catch on about his mother’s planned surprise. He had seen the package arrive earlier and remarked on its odd shape, at the time, not 100 percent sure what exactly it held. On Sunday morning, he finally saw what the mysterious package held in store: those colorful circles to celebrate his final home game at Ohio State.Nanci Coolen, senior Bo Coolen’s mother, watches her son play at first base during Ohio State’s game against Purdue on Sunday, May 13, 2018. Credit: Edward Sutelan | Editor-in-Chief“As soon as I saw her holding all of them, I was like, ‘Wow’ because it felt like senior day back in Hawaii with all the leis,” Bo said.The ceremony itself was surreal, Nanci said. She had been to so many for the Hawaii softball players, so she knew what it would be like. But she couldn’t believe the one for her son had finally arrived . She couldn’t believe her son, whom she would make wear a helmet even during tee-ball, was preparing to graduate from college.Two years ago, Bo went to Eddie George’s Grille for dinner with the Ohio State coaching staff while head coach Greg Beals recruited him to transfer from junior college. He committed on the spot.Now, after Bo finished Senior Day with the win, the family will again head out to that same restaurant to celebrate Mother’s Day. Just like that day, he plans to order a buffalo chicken sandwich. He will recommend his mom do the same. It will all come full circle for Nanci. read more

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OxladeChamberlain Im staying positive over my injury

first_imgLiverpool midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain says that he is trying to remain positive over his serious knee problemThe 25-year-old sustained serious knee damage during Liverpool’s Champions League semi-final first leg against AS Roma back in April.Oxlade-Chamberlain was then was ruled out of England’s World Cup campaign this summer after undergoing surgery to repair the issue in May.The England international is also expected to miss the majority of the 2018/19 campaign as he works on returning to full fitness.“It is a very serious injury,” Oxlade-Chamberlain told Sky Sports, via the club website.Roberto Firmino, LiverpoolVirgil van Dijk praises Roberto Firmino after Liverpool’s win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Virgil van Dijk hailed team-mate Roberto Firmino after coming off the bench to inspire Liverpool to a 3-1 comeback win against Newcastle United.“It can happen to any of us at any time and that’s obviously something that’s never easy to deal with and get over.“I’m trying to stay positive, that’s the sort of character I am. I feel that’s the best way to move things forward.“I’m in good spirits and I’m progressing for sure.”Oxlade-Chamberlain managed five goals and seven assists in 42 appearances across all competitions for Liverpool last season following his £35m move from Arsenal last summer.last_img read more

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Argentina chief Im sure Messi will return in 2019

first_imgArgentina general manager Jorge Burruchaga is hopeful that the national team haven’t seen the last of Lionel MessiThe Barcelona forward absence’s for Argentina continues after his name again failed to show in Lionel Scaloni’s squad list for the international break.It means that Messi has now not represented Argentina since June 30, where they went crashing out of the World Cup in the last-16 stage to eventual winners France.While Messi himself has remained silent on his Argentina future, Burruchaga expects him back for next year’s Copa America in Brazil.“No date is scheduled right now for the return of Messi and he will not be back before the end of the year,” Burruchaga told Goal.FC Barcelona, Valencia CFMatch Preview: Barcelona vs Valencia Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 Is derby time in La Liga, as Barcelona welcomes Valencia to the Camp Nou Stadium tonight at 21:00 (CET).“But it’s impossible that he will not be in the national team again. This is transitory.“I’m sure that next year, he will be in the Argentina national team again.”Messi has scored a record 65 goals and added 42 assists in 128 matches for Argentina.La Albiceleste will play Mexico on Saturday in Cordoba before facing Mexico four days later.last_img read more

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Craig Gordon remembers the time he broke his arm

first_imgThe Celtic goalkeeper broke his arm while battling for the ball with Jermain Defoe and he was out for three monthsExactly nine years ago, Craig Gordon was Sunderland’s goalkeeper and he got his arm broken after a collision with Tottenham Hotspur Jermain Defoe.“I got to the ball first and he got their second and broke my arm. That was a bad break and I had to get a metal plate inserted in my arm,” Gordon told The Chronicle Live.“I was out for another three months and came back and played the rest of the season with the metal plate.”“That summer I got the metal taken out of my arm and very soon into pre-season the arm broke again and that was another three months when it got put back in again,” he added.Mikey Johnston, CelticJohnston is disappointed after being injured Manuel R. Medina – September 11, 2019 Celtic winger Mikey Johnston was disappointed to miss Scotland Under 21 national team’s victories over San Marino and Croatia, and he hopes he can return to play soon.“That was the third operation on my arm and that was frustrating. The metal plate is still in there today so I have not had any more trouble with it.”“Every time I felt like I was getting to a point where I was putting in good, consistent performances, something else would come up,” he commented.“I was starting to play in games where I probably wasn’t fit and I was starting to think whether this would ever be fixed.”“This was a very long-term thing and perhaps it was something I wouldn’t come back from,” he added.“There had been so many things that had gone wrong I felt I had to leave.”last_img read more

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Gary Neville tips Pochettino for United job

first_imgSky Sports pundit Gary Neville believes that Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino is the right man to take the United job after Jose Mourinho was sacked on Tuesday.Mourinho was fired by Manchester United on Tuesday after a poor start to the season, and assistant manager Michael Carrick will act as interim manager until a new temporary boss is appointed within the next two days.Former Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has long been linked with the job, but Neville says Pochettino would be perfect to take over.“I said last season that the next manager of Man Utd should be Pochettino,” Neville told Sky Sports.“If I look at the values of United, you look at Pochettino’s belief in young players at Southampton and with Tottenham.“You look at his performance levels and style of play, the way in which he carries himself at all times – publicly and in private – I have been fortunate enough to spend two or three days at Tottenham’s training ground and for me, he just feels like the most ideal candidate.“There will be others who say ‘no’, but Man Utd have tried managers who have won European Cups, managers who have won multiple leagues, managers who have had that solid grounding in the Premier League.Jose Mourinho, Lionel MessiMourinho: “Lionel Messi made me a better coach” Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Jose Mourinho believes the experience of going up against Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi at Real Madrid made him a greater coach.“My view is they need someone who meets the three key principles of that football club – the promotion of youth, entertaining football and to win football matches.“So at this moment in time, I see him – and people will suggest that he has not won a trophy yet at Tottenham, but with a net spend of -£29m, or something over the last four years, he could not have done more. He has done the most incredible job and I do think he is the person who is the most outstanding candidate.“But if you are a Tottenham Hotspur fan, you will not appreciate me saying that. If you are Daniel Levy at Tottenham Hotspur, you will be grabbing and holding on to him for dear life because you are moving into a new stadium.“But he is the individual who fits the profile of what Man Utd need in terms of what he has done in the Premier League over the last five, six, seven years at both clubs.”last_img read more

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