United States USMNT returns to Ireland with another young squad, hoping for much different results Ives Galarcep @soccerbyives 02:30 6/2/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Bill Streitcher United States Republic of Ireland v United States Republic of Ireland Friendlies Opinion More than three years after having a relatively young team thrashed in Dublin, the U.S. national team is back in Ireland with an even younger team More than three years after its last trip to Ireland, the U.S. national team is back once again, and the Americans are hoping its current collection of young talent fares much better than the last group to make the trip to the Emerald Isle.The U.S. suffered a 4-1 loss to Ireland on November 18, 2014 in a match that was as lopsided as the score indicated. Jurgen Klinsmann brought a young squad to Ireland for that match, but he also started nine players who were part of the 2014 World Cup team. What made that shellacking all the more frustrating was the fact that Ireland was also trying out new faces, but it was the Irish team that showed more toughness and quality.On Saturday, the U.S. will face Ireland once again, and will feature a significantly younger team than the one that lost to Ireland in 2014, with goalkeeper Bill Hamid, midfielder Rubio Rubin and forward Bobby Wood the only current members of the squad to play in the 2014 meeting. An encouraging 3-0 win against Bolivia on Monday provided a confidence boost for the young group, but the Americans are fully aware that Ireland will present a much tougher challenge. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now “We know it’s going to be a bigger test, and it’s going to be tough playing on the road, in front of their fans, so we just have to be ready to fight,” U.S. midfielder Weston McKennie told Goal. “That’s what Americans are known for, putting up a fight, and with such a young group here now with so much to prove I think the players will be putting up a fight.”Caretaker coach Dave Sarachan has called in some reinforcements for the friendlies against Ireland and France, which should help against an Ireland team that has its own injection of youth along with a strong nucleus of veterans that includes Shane Long, James McLean and temporary captain John O’Shea, who will be playing in his farewell match for the Ireland squad.Saturday will mark the sixth time the U.S. has played Ireland in Dublin, with the Irish posting a 5-0 record in the previous meetings. In fact, the Americans haven’t beaten Ireland since 1996 — in Boston — which was before several current U.S. players were born.The Ireland game should provide some clarity on what the current pecking order is at various positions, including goalkeeper, where Bill Hamid and Zack Steffen will challenge for starts in the upcoming friendlies. Hamid is the more experienced option, but he struggled for playing time with Danish champions FC Midtjylland. Steffen is in the midst of another standout season for the Columbus Crew, and showed well in his national team debut in the March win against Paraguay.Christian Pulisic’s absence leaves a void in the playmaker role, one which could be filled in a variety of ways. Sarachan has previously tried playing without a true attacking midfielder, as we saw in the March win against Paraguay, when Wil Trapp, Tyler Adams and Marky Delgado made up the central trio. If Sarachan goes with that approach again, then we could see a trio of Trapp, Adams and McKennie. Another playmaker option is Kenny Saief, who worked on the wing against Paraguay, but can play in a central role.On the wing, Sarachan will have to consider giving Tim Weah another start after his showing against Bolivia. Rubin and Julian Green are also options, but so is Adams, who can be deployed either centrally or on the right flank. Sarachan could choose to play Adams as a winger against Ireland, and then in central midfield against France’s formidable midfield.At forward, Wood’s return to the team should see him earn a start against France, but Andrija Novakovich has earned himself a long look, and he would make a solid option against Ireland. Josh Sargent held his own against Bolivia, scoring in his national team debut, but he seems more likely destined for a substitute’s role in the upcoming friendlies.Defensively, the central defense tandem of Cameron Carter-Vickers and Matt Miazga should be deployed in both upcoming friendlies. Sarachan gave Erik Palmer-Brown and Walker Zimmerman a look against Bolivia, but the Carter-Vickers pairing with Miazga is widely regarded as the future of the position. Tim Parker is enjoying a standout season with the New York Red Bulls, and should also see some minutes.At fullback, Yedlin and Villafana give the U.S. a pair of veteran options to take on Ireland and France, though Antonee Robinson played very well against Bolivia and may have put himself in position for another look. Levante right back Shaq Moore is back with the squad and is searching for his first cap.
We know it’s hard to tackle the never ending list of tasks associated with building an online presence. Lucky for nonprofits, pro bono professionals are ready to help boost your online image via social media, online fundraising, email marketing, and SEO Because of organizations like the Taproot Foundation and Catchafire it’s much easier to find pro bono consultants who are willing to provide their talents at no charge to a nonprofit like yours.If pro bono is new to you, projects that are compartmentalized—photography, newsletter design, and copyediting—are great places to start. Projects like designing an entire website or creating a communication strategy are more complex and best approached when you are prepared to invest the time and staff resources to work with a pro bono consultant over a longer period of time. Although these projects are more advanced, they often result in long-lasting relationships with your consultants and can create invested champions for your cause.To start planning how you can use pro bono to maximize your online presence, download our chart to assess what pro bono projects your nonprofit is ready for.Once you’ve identified your projects, check out how you can secure pro bono help at the Taproot Foundation’s website.
I’m a huge fan of case studies. They’re an incredible tool to showcase your nonprofit’s work, demonstrate social proof, and gain more supporters. Jay Baer’s Youtility explains the power of case studies in greater detail, but here are a few ways you can use this approach to support your fundraising and marketing efforts: 1) Get testimonials. Tell the story of why people support your organization. Ask questions such as:Why are you passionate about this issue?When did you start learning about this issue?Why do you choose to support our organization?By gathering this information, you’ll not only have endorsements for your cause, but you can also use responses to inform your marketing and donor recruitment strategies.2) Document how you spent money. Did you dedicate a large portion of funds to operational expenses? Why? What impact did it have? Once you explain that to donors, they’ll better understand how you fulfill your mission, and why it’s important to have operational expenses. Every penny of your budget doesn’t have to go to on-the-ground work, but you do have to demonstrate how operations are vital to ensuring the services you provide are making a positive change. 3) Survey those you help. Ask your constituency how they’ve found your services. Do they see your nonprofit as a vital member of their community? Would they be able to get where they are without you?If those answers affirm your work, ask respondents if you can use a quote in your case study. Most will be happy to help. In some cases, if you provide them with links and social media messages, they’ll share the study with their network, too. If the answers bring up questions or poke holes in your work, pay attention to that. That’s a great opportunity to take feedback and turn it into something positive.Have you created a case study before? What were the results? How did you share it with supporters?
Founded in 2005, Ovarian Cancer Connection (OCC) is no stranger to fundraising success during its 11-year history. In fact, this Ohio-based nonprofit has raised $36,000 just for their program that provides financial assistance to women undergoing treatment for ovarian cancer.This fundraising success, however, came with its own challenges. Without the right tools in place, the OCC’s system for tracking donors and donations ended up being a lot of manual work.Gini Steinke, OCC’s founder and executive director, knew that there was a better way to track OCC’s donor data. Gini decided getting a new database, known as donor management software or a donor management system (DMS), would help the OCC get all their donor data in one location. After exploring different options, OCC migrated their donor data from spreadsheets into Network for Good’s donor management system.Gini recently shared how she manages OCC’s donor information and fundraising now that they have a system better equipped to get the job done.Tracking Individual FundraisingLike many small nonprofits, the OCC raises most of their funds through individual gifts. These donations either come in through events or donations from individuals who have a personal connection with organization. Currently, the OCC has more than 3,000 donors in their database.Before Network for Good’s DMS, the OCC’s donor database was a detailed spreadsheet with tabs representing each year’s gifts. Although it’s not ideal, this system for tracking gifts is pretty standard among many nonprofits. Network for Good’s donor management system brings it all together. The primary problem with this practice is that a spreadsheet isn’t ideal for accessing donor information. If Gini was looking for a specific donor, she’d have to search through multiple tabs to find the donor’s complete giving history over the course of his or her relationship with the organization. According to Gini, transitioning to a system built to manage donor information has made this process much easier:“We did track donations through spreadsheets, but I’d have to go through all the tabs to find a donation. But now, Network for Good’s donor management system brings it all together.“Transforming Online Giving Gini estimates that she saves about 2 hours of work a day by using Network for Good’s donor management software. The Ovarian Cancer Connection has an incredible mission and is fortunate to have a savvy executive director like Gini who has created fundraising strategies that work. Gini estimates that she saves about 2 hours of work a day by using Network for Good’s donor management software. And during events season, she estimates she’ll save 3 hours of manual work every day.Now that they have the tools to help save time, keep donor records organized, and raise more money, the Ovarian Cancer Connection can focus what matters most: their mission.Are you ready to make the switch from spreadsheets to a donor management system that will save you time and help you streamline your fundraising processes? Schedule a demo and see Network for Good’s donor management software for yourself! Our easy-to-use system that’s helping organizations like Ovarian Cancer Connection save time everyday can help your organization too. Schedule a demo today! I went into the donor management system and the online donation was right there. Everything was already entered. It was like a miracle! It was wonderful! Before using Network for Good’s online donation page and donor management software, OCC was collecting online gifts through PayPal, which made tracking a very cumbersome process:“Donations would come in through PayPal. We’d get an email notification and transfer the money to our bank. Then, I’d input the donation in QuickBooks and enter it into a spreadsheet. It was time consuming to make sure everything was recorded accurately.” Now, online donations are automatically added to OCC’s DMS. Using Network for Good’s donation page and donor management system together means there’s no manual lift required:“I went into the donor management system and the online donation was right there. Everything was already entered. It was like a miracle! It was wonderful!”Gini is especially excited to use the donor management system and donation pages during the organization’s big events.“This is going to be great when it comes time for our major events! More and more people are getting comfortable with online giving. This is great because it makes it easier for [donors] and it saves us money.”Managing Offline GiftsDonor management software isn’t just for tracking online donors, it can track offline gifts too. If Gini gets a check handed to her at an event, she can easily log the donation in the DMS and track specifics like the gift’s designation or if the gift is made in someone’s honor or memory. Notes on why the donor gave can be attached to a donation too.Making Segmentation EasierSmart fundraisers like Gini use segmentation to send more relevant (and more effective) messages to different groups of supporters.And, because of the nature of their work, they need to be especially diligent with keeping track of those supporters who are survivors of ovarian cancer.Using the group feature in Network for Good’s donor management system allows the OCC to track survivors easily. When Gini is inviting survivors to a luncheon, she can seamlessly send the email through the system by simply selecting the group labeled “Survivors.” There’s no need to sort through a list, run a filter again, or import/export a spreadsheet.Ovarian Cancer Connection’s executive director saves 2-3 hours of work a day after switching from Excel to Network for Good’s donor management software.Keeping Track of Donor NotesGini truly understands that fundraising is about relationships, not transactions. For this reason, Gini needs to keep notes on every donor she speaks with. But with thousands of donors, details about important donor conversations can’t be kept organized with post-it notes or in someone’s memory. This is why Network for Good’s donor management system’s notes feature is so important to the OCC and Gini in particular:“In the donor management software, I can pull up the [donor’s] records and see my notes so the next time I talk to them, I can ask them ‘how was your son’s move?’ Otherwise, it would be in a paper file. But now, everything is right there in the donor record.”Reporting Success to the Board Network for Good’s donor management system offers built-in dashboards that are easy to understand and can help people like Gini explain the organization’s financials to those who aren’t digging into the numbers on a regular basis:“At board meetings, I plan to give a snapshot of our fundraising efforts so far. The dashboard clearly explains to everyone, especially to those without a finance background, the most important information: average donation and giving to date. I think our Board will be surprised with what our average donation really is!”Saving Time by Getting Out of Spreadsheets
Posted on May 2, 2013March 13, 2017By: Sarah Blake, MHTF consultantClick 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)In an editorial published this week in PLOS Medicine, the editors discuss the critical need for improved health information, particularly clear, accessible reference materials that enable health care providers to put the best evidence into practice and bolster health care in low and middle income countries. In their discussion of the critical need for high quality reference and educational materials, the authors single out the issue of postpartum hemorrhage.From the editorial: It is in the poorest settings where basic health information may prove most valuable. For example, postpartum hemorrhage (PPH) is a leading cause of maternal death worldwide; yet despite being recommended by the WHO and other professional bodies, active management of the third stage of labor to prevent PPH was found to be correctly used in only 0.5% to 32% of observed deliveries in seven developing countries . Worryingly, six of the seven countries were found to have multiple guidelines and conflicting recommendations for active management of the third stage of labor.The authors go on to point out that while important sources of knowledge, expanding dissemination of the sort of evidence published in medical journals alone is not sufficient. Instead, the most critical resources may be those that translate evidence into forms that can be readily applied:Medical journals remain a key part of the knowledge translation process, almost exclusively dealing with the final stages of knowledge creation (primary research), distillation (systematic reviews and guidelines), and commentary (editorializing and contextualizing by experts) via peer review and finally dissemination. Although making research openly available to be both read and reused is an essential step toward a vision of wider access to healthcare knowledge, disseminating information on its own is not enough to ensure evidence is used in decision-making. In many settings it is access to secondary reference and educational materials based on the best available evidence that is severely lacking yet probably more crucial for clinical practice than the most recent observational study or clinical trial findings.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:
Posted on May 16, 2014November 4, 2016By: Katie Millar, Technical Writer, 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)Some view the rate of Cesarean sections as ubiquitous, others scarce. Either way, rates that deviate far from the WHO’s recommended rate of 15 percent are undesirable and pose health risks to both moms and babies. To highlight this fact, the birth story of the MHTF’s very own Kate Mitchell was recently featured in PRI’s article, “Why are Cesarean sections so common when most agree they shouldn’t be?” From the PRI story:Kate’s birth story“‘I constantly meet women who have very similar experiences to me,’ says Mitchell, ‘where they were committed to having a low-intervention vaginal birth, and their providers were also committed to support them in that, and somehow they still ended up having a C-section. That’s the mystery to me. I don’t understand how that happens… The evidence suggests that a C-section is a more risky route of delivery than a vaginal birth,’ she says. ‘So why are we delivering more and more babies in a risky way?’”Lack of clear clinical guidelines“One problem, experts say, has been a lack of clear guidelines specifying the circumstances under which a C-section is medically necessary, leading to a wide variation in the prevalence of Cesareans across hospitals. A study published in March of last year found that the C-section rates across Massachusetts ranged from 14 to 39 percent, with no differences in the condition of the patients that might explain the variation. ‘It really comes down to a difference in styles across hospitals,’ says Sakala. ‘We need to rein in those differences.’In an attempt to do that, this February the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists issued joint guidelines that call on doctors and hospitals to avoid Cesarean sections, even if it means letting first-time mothers remain in labor longer and push harder. The guidelines recommend letting first-time mothers push for three hours or more during labor. They also recommend using forceps to get the baby out vaginally.”Kate’s story is not uncommon. While the under medicalization of birth is a problem in many countries, so is over medicalization. A combination of legal, clinical, and cultural factors have brought us to a dangerous new normal for birth. To review the implications of an increase in Cesarean sections on maternal health and rights, see our previous post.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:
When you want to contact your donors, chances are, you email them. And so does everybody else.Your donors, through no fault of their own, have inboxes that are constantly bogged down with messages from various organizations, businesses, stores, news outlets, and bloggers. And it’s a rare person who actually reads all of it.So, how do you “cut through the clutter?” Here are five tips to ensure your email reaches (and resonates) with your donors:Tip 1: Think Before You Write.Before you start typing, think about why you’re writing. What is the purpose of the email? Is it to get the word out about your nonprofit’s recent activities? Is it to invite donors to an event? Is it an appeal for donations? The most effective emails focus on one thing. In other words, don’t combine the invitation to join the peer-to-peer campaign with a program announcement and sign off with a donation request to fund a new roof.Sure, you have a lot of things to tell your donors, but unless this is your periodic newsletter (and formatted as such), keep each email to one topic. If the need is vital, it deserves its own email. Need help narrowing down your list? Write down what you want to say and prioritize the messages by need.Once you’ve finalized your email’s topic, it’s time to start an outline. “Outline?” you say. “It’s just an email. What do I need an outline for?” True – emails should be short – but again, we’re going for effectiveness here, and there’s nothing like an outline to keep your writing focused.Here’s what I’m suggesting: At the top of your outline, write the goal of this email (e.g. “get donations to the Spring campaign”). Then, jot down whatever supporting points or bits of information that you think will encourage your readers to take that action. Once you’ve got this bit figured out, you have my permission to start writing.Tip 2: Craft a Killer Subject Line.The hardest thing to write is always the first line. It’s no different when it comes to an email. And there’s a lot of pressure resting on this line, especially when 35% of people say that their decision to open an email comes from subject line alone. How do you write a subject line that convinces your donors to click?In the words of author Ann Handley, ask yourself: “WWYO – What Would You Open?”Many studies have investigated what makes a subject line effective, and they all seem to agree on a few key points:Keep it short, but on point. Too short and it’s not explicit enough, too long and you’ll lose your reader’s attention. Practically speaking, if the subject line is too long, it will probably get cut off in the recipient’s email reader. A good rule of thumb is to aim for 6-8 words.Personalization helps. People love reading their names. Use tokens to include your recipients’ name in the subject line, so it appears you’re addressing each person directly. And, in general, the subject line should relate to something that sets the sender apart or fits with a more narrow interest. For example, “How your dollars are making a difference?”Avoid sounding like spam. Certain words are spam triggers, and if you use them in a subject line, your donors’ email provider could move the message directly to the spam folder. Also, don’t use all caps in the subject line. Not only does it look like you’re shouting, but it also makes your message more likely to end up in the spam folder. Your subject line should relate to what it’s introducing.Tip 3: Make Your Copy Count.The writer’s classic, The Elements of Style, argues that every word of every sentence should serve a purpose, or be deleted. You don’t have to be quite so ruthless with your emails, but you should try to keep your messages short and succinct. Write no more (and no less!) than it takes to get your message across. Some studies show that the optimal email length is 50-100 words. Of course, some of your emails may need to be longer (like an appeal) but, the principle of brevity still applies.The email marketing platform in Network for Good’s donor management system has pre-built templates for appeals, acknowledgements, and more. Curious to see it up close? Click here to request a demo.And while we’re on the subject of your email copy, remember that you’re writing to humans. Humans have a sense of humor. You don’t have to be all business, all the time. If people find your emails warm, friendly, and even a little entertaining, they’re more likely to keep reading time after time.What else can you do to make sure your email is effective? Stay away from large “spray and pray” blasts to your entire list. Breaking your list into smaller segments allows you to write more effective messages. For example, the thank you message you send to recurring donors should probably be different than the one you send send to first-time donors.Tip 4: Have a Clear Call to Action.The body of your email serves one purpose, to draw your recipients to your Call To Action (CTA).Your CTA is what you want your recipient to do after reading the email. For example, if the goal is asking for donations, the CTA would be “Donate now.”Your email should always have one goal and one CTA. Let me repeat: it is always a bad idea to have more than one CTA. Why? Distraction. If you put multiple CTAs in an email, your audience is going to get confused and distracted. Worst of all, they’re not going take the action you want.Tip 5: Track and Tweak.How do you know if your emails are working? Your email marketing platform should show you two basic statistics: open rates and click rates. The open rate (what percentage of recipients opened your email) will tell you how successful your subject line was. The click rate will show you what percentage of recipients clicked a link in your email. To judge the effectiveness of your email copy, look at the click-to-open rate, which is the percentage of clicks from the people who opened the email.As a rule, always be testing. If that last subject line got a 20% open rate, see what you can do to bump it to 23%. If you had a high open rate and a really low click rate, review the copy and find ways to make it more compelling.There are a lot of options for email marketing systems, but only Network for Good donor management combines built-in email marketing with a personal fundraising coach to help you craft the perfect appeal. Develop targeted lists of donors from standard and custom filters. Then, draft your email from scratch or use one of our pre-built templates. All of the data from your email (opens, clicks, etc.) lives in your donor management, and your donor profiles are updated to show who got the email and how they responded. And acknowledgement tracking? That’s automatic. Click here to see it up close in a personal demo.
It’s common for nonprofit board members and staff to express frustration with special events. Questions like “How does this event advance our mission?” or “Where are the major donors, new donors, and volunteers?” are typical.Many of these concerns are raised because your board and staff want to make sure donors (and potential donors) have the opportunity to connect with the organization at a deeper level and understand how they are supporting mission-focused programs.Instead of moving forward with the usual events plan this year, try focusing on these five things that will ensure your events are donor-centric and have a stewardship element.1. Give corporate sponsors opportunities for more involvement.Your event sponsors want to show they care passionately about the community. They want brand visibility and recognition in ways they cannot secure through advertising. Sometimes they want to meet new people: ask them to sponsor tables at a gala or water tents at an outdoor event and place members of their team at those tables and tents. Invite the employees of the corporation to participate as event volunteers.2. Secure creative event partners.Think about co-promoting your event by featuring local artists or dancers as the entertainment. Ask seven chefs to be the feature of seven different food sites at the event. Ask individuals who have a wedding or reunion coming up to allow you to use the table decorations or flowers. Create centerpieces that reflect the mission or are made by clients. Choose a venue that reflects the mission, perhaps a hospital main lobby after hours, a schoolroom, or a park where homeless sleep at night. Not only do creative partners help cut costs, these partners are given the opportunity to contribute to your event in a unique way. These contributions of a special skill or talent can be extremely rewarding or, it lets supporters make the event possible beyond a typical cash donation.3. Choose the right events for the right type of donor.Different events attract different personas. Think of the different donor personas that might be in your donor database as you are planning your special events for the year. The mission must be front and center to the “why” support the event. If the event is an auction, you need to ensure that the people invited to this event can afford the benefit items and expect high end items. If the event is a race, you need to attract people who can not only complete the distance and bring a competitive energy, but will also attract or influence others to support them, support your organization’s cause and follow their training and race progress. And for peer-to-peer fundraising events, these peer fundraisers must also feel comfortable sharing why they support and want others to support your mission.4. Leverage (and value) your board and volunteers.The board must be empowered to connect their network to the event to reach the goal. They need to be proud and excited to participate in the event and willing to speak to their personal “why” story. They need to make supporting your mission important to those within their circle of influence. Some friendly fundraising or guest count competition between board members can be motivating for some people. Facilitate, invite, welcome the board member ideas.Event volunteers must be a fun team, able to answer questions, and easily identifiable the day of. Making sure board and volunteers are happy and feel valued promotes leadership succession for your committees and continued involvement. To help make sure that event volunteering is a postive experience, think about why committee members and board members would expend effort in planning and executing the event. Instead of focusing on what you or the staff need people to do, stay focused on your volunteer and staff why to ensure the experience is a great one for those helping out.5. Plan for success.This means planning at the detailed level. Everything, from signing up for an event and buying a ticket online to paying for an auction item, reflects on your nonprofit’s brand. Instead of thinking about how this process can be made easier for staff, think about the process from the donor’s point of view. Use consistent wording on invitations, your gala program, and volunteer training notes. This is especially important when explaining the event’s mission impact. Receipts or reservation confirmations must be prompt and communicate what has been accomplished because of their vital support. If you’re doing an auction, items should be on display online as well as on the night of the gala to add to excitement and facilitate online bidding.Planning for success requires a communication plan that cultivates the guests and volunteers of the event. Many nonprofits are afraid of over-communicating the event. Don’t be! Part of this events communication strategy should include plans for cultivating volunteers, sponsors, event attendees and major donors after the event. Gather their feedback and thank them early and often. Have board members follow up with five new people they met at the event. And put their ideas to use: with these comments, prepare an even better event next year.Donor-centric events are stewardship events. You will find success with these events as long as you utilize them to bring new and existing donors closer to the mission and to thank major supporters of your cause. And remember to thank early and often: when buying a ticket, upon arrival at the event, upon departure and after the event is over. Remind them when the goal has been raised that the mission cannot be archived without their support.
“In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Ben Franklin’s wit aside, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) will impact every individual and organization. The issue we hear about the most from our customers is how the increase in the standard deduction amount will effect giving. If the standard deduction is more beneficial than itemizing and donors find they can’t write off their donation anymore, will they still give as much? The truth is, only time will tell. But recent history gives us hope.Americans Reach New High in GivingAccording to Giving USA’s annual report on philanthropy, American individuals, estates, foundations and corporations contributed an estimated $390.05 billion to U.S. charities in 2016, surpassing 2015 and 2014, when charitable donations hit a record high. Americans continually prove that they want to make a difference and are dedicated to contributing to the causes that matter to them.TCJA’s Impact on GivingThe key changes under the TCJA include:Increase in the standard deduction to $12,000 for individuals and $24,000 for joint filers.Elimination of personal exemptions.Limitation on State and Local Taxes (SALT) of $10,000 (inclusive of income and property taxes).Reduction in the corporate income tax rate.Reduction of five of the seven tax brackets (marginal rates).At Network for Good, we specialize in fundraising best practices, not tax policy. So the best piece of advice we can offer you about how the TCJA will affect your nonprofit is to talk to your accountant and make a plan that includes donor engagement. But to help us break down the TCJA changes, we reached out to Network for Good Fundraising Coach and Founder of Fundraising Strategies, John Gilchrist, FAHP, CFRE, who joined us for a recent webinar “3 Ways the New Tax Reform Act Impacts the Nonprofit Community.” You can also read some of John’s insights on these changes and their effect on nonprofits in our other blog post here.Keep Calm and Carry OnChange can be scary, but the worst thing you can do is overreact. The key factors that drive giving still exist. Professors Sara Konrath and Femida Handy, experts in giving-related topics in psychology and economics, respectively, conducted a study on why people give to charity. Through their findings, they developed a ‘motives to donate’ scale, highlighting five key factors for why people give to nonprofits: altruism, trust, social, egoism, and taxes.As you can see, altruism is the number one reason—far surpassing taxes—which supports our belief at Network for Good that the desire to help others is stronger than any personal tax benefits.Take ActionAt the heart of every nonprofit is the desire to change the status quo. You don’t throw up your hands and capitulate. You roll up your sleeves and make things happen. Even tax laws can’t break that spirit. Giving habits may change as a result of the TCJA, but Americans have proven over and over again that we are a philanthropic society. Even at the height of the Recession, charitable giving in the U.S. exceeded $300 billion.The changes put into effect by the TCJA offer nonprofits an opportunity to lean in and revisit the conversation with donors about how you’re improving the community you serve. The fact that they may not receive a tax break makes their gift that much more significant and shows their commitment to the work you do. Now is the time to talk to your donors about how their gift directly affects the change they want to see in their community. Find additional inspiration for donor engagement in our “10-Point Checklist to Make the New Tax Laws Work for Your Nonprofit.”We know that altruism is the driving factor for why people donate. The generosity of your donors is what makes your work possible. Let them know how much you appreciate them and you’ll all share in the success of your organization. Use Network for Good’s donor management system and our personal coaches to analyze your data in order to put your organization’s energy and funds where it will do the most good. Continue to cultivate the loyalty of your donors that give small gifts; the donors that may not be affected by itemized taxes. Look at their giving history. How long have they been with you? Perhaps now is the time to ask them to expand their giving? If you depend on midlevel donors, allocate resources for marketing and outreach to them in order to engage a broad spectrum of donors. In conversations with your major donors, discuss with them the importance of their gifts and remind them, throughout the year, of the impact they have.Interested in hearing more about how the new tax laws will impact nonprofits? Register today for our upcoming webinar “Tax Reform – Impacts on Nonprofits and Giving.”
Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are being encouraged to explore the possibility of raising funding through capital market options, such as the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE).“The active steps include having your plan and the goal to be a listed company. Begin by keeping proper records, start to prepare a business plan, and actively surround yourselves with persons who have taken the journey and have succeeded. It can be done, and we await your entrance,” JSE Managing Director, Marlene Street Forrest, stated.She was speaking at the Small Business Association of Jamaica’s (SBAJ) second regional MSME Conference, held recently at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston.Managing Director of the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE), Marlene Street Forrest, addresses the Small Business Association of Jamaica’s (SBAJ) second regional MSME Conference, held recently at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston. She was speaking at the Small Business Association of Jamaica’s (SBAJ) second regional MSME Conference, held recently at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston. “The active steps include having your plan and the goal to be a listed company. Begin by keeping proper records, start to prepare a business plan, and actively surround yourselves with persons who have taken the journey and have succeeded. It can be done, and we await your entrance,” JSE Managing Director, Marlene Street Forrest, stated. Mrs. Street Forrest noted that despite foreign exchange rate fluctuations, “we have very favourable market conditions, with business and consumer confidence high, a low rate of inflation and over- subscription in all of our Initial Public Offerings (IPOs), which signal an interest in the stock market.”“These factors are good for business, and we believe that the MSMEs should now be engaged,” she further stated.For his part, Wisynco Group Chairman, William Mahfood, noted that financing is becoming easier for the MSME sector.“Many banks are taking more risks and investing in small businesses across Jamaica,” he indicated.The conference was held to highlight new trends in business development and management; promote success stories among MSMEs; examine the MSME Policy within a macroeconomic context and its impact on business profitability; provide an interactive forum to explore opportunities for national, regional and global business collaboration; and expose participants to new technologies, research and development in agriculture, and climate smart innovation. Story Highlights Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are being encouraged to explore the possibility of raising funding through capital market options, such as the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE).
ARLINGTON, Va. – The chief U.S. negotiator shrugged his shoulders when asked about signs of trouble in the NAFTA talks on Sunday. John Melle pulled open a door, entered a work room, and offered a one-word reply about how it’s going.“Fabulous,” he said.Upon leaving those rooms, people are saying the exact opposite. The No. 1 discussion topic at this current round is whether Melle’s team is being ordered to sabotage the talks, so President Donald Trump can declare NAFTA has failed.That’s because the U.S. team has unfurled a half-dozen bombshells so far beyond the realm of what’s palatable to the other parties that it’s all but exploded earlier hopes of a quick, easy negotiation.The other countries are scrutinizing the body language of U.S. negotiators as they present ideas like a sunset clause that could end NAFTA after five years; ask to gut the deal’s enforcement mechanisms; and pursue non-starter ideas on dairy, textiles, automobiles and Buy American rules.Some of these American negotiators built the very agreement they’re now proposing to strip down. Melle has even praised NAFTA’s successes. One non-U.S. official described the body language of American negotiators as: “Kind of sheepish. They say, ‘We don’t have any flexibility on this.’”Another used an analogy: “The (U.S.) negotiators are like lawyers who hate their clients.”Everyone is now watching Donald Trump.The president has repeatedly stated his desire to invoke NAFTA’s termination clause, allowing him to cancel the deal on six months’ notice, in order to scare other countries into making concessions.It would fit a tactic Trump has been accused of: Break now, fix later.Critics have said Trump used this strategy on health care, undocumented young migrants, and the Iran nuclear deal — breaking an existing policy, then ordering others to put together a replacement, in a hurry, before a deadline hits, and chaos ensues.Could he try it on NAFTA?A front-page New York Times article on Sunday on Trump’s approach concludes with an analyst comparing Iran and NAFTA.Iran’s foreign minister sees parallels himself.Javad Zarif linked the NAFTA scrap to the one involving his country in an interview that aired Sunday: “This administration is withdrawing from everything. Somebody called it the, ‘Withdrawal Doctrine,’ for this administration. It’s withdrawing from NAFTA. It’s withdrawing from Trans Pacific Partnership. It’s withdrawing from UNESCO,” Zarif said in a CBS interview.“So people cannot trust anymore the word of the United States. You see, in order to bring United States on board for many of these international agreements, a lot of people make a lot of concessions. Now nobody is going to make any concessions to the United States because they know that the next U.S. president will come back and say, ‘It wasn’t enough.’”The Canadian and Mexican governments intend to sit through the storm.They say there are no plans to walk out, or make aggressive counter-demands, like pushing their own non-starters — such as free trade in softwood lumber. They say they’re better off working patiently.Officials do profess to being perplexed about Trump’s goal.Several Canadians said it’s unclear: Is Trump trying to get other countries to leave the table, declare talks have failed, and invoke NAFTA’s six-month termination clause? Or is this just overly dramatic early bargaining — a la, “Art of the Deal”?But one thing is increasingly clear, they say: hopes are fading for a quick deal by Christmas.“Do we want a deal? Yes. Do we want a quick deal? Yes,” one official said. “But are we gonna take any deal just to wrap up quickly? Obviously not. If it takes more time, it takes more time.”The initial rush for an agreement was prompted by the political calendar, as some worried that if a deal wasn’t completed by the time national election campaigns start in Mexico and the U.S. next year, it won’t happen before 2019.And that would mean an extra year of uncertainty watching Trump — scrutinizing whether he’s readying to pull the plug on NAFTA.That lingering uncertainty over NAFTA, coupled with homeowners’ concerns about possible interest hikes, are acting as drags on an otherwise strong economy, the Bank of Canada governor said last weekend.“These are sources of angst,” Stephen Poloz told reporters.He said it’s hard to predict the economic impact of a NAFTA termination. He said the bank’s own models rely on research from people like Dan Ciuriak, who assesses the impact of different tariffs on business decision-making.Ciuriak used to run the computer-modelling unit at Canada’s foreign-affairs ministry. Now a private consultant, he happens to be working on such a study about what would happen under different scenarios — ranging from the end of NAFTA, to the end of all trade deals with the U.S.He’s still crunching the numbers, and won’t publish for another couple of weeks.But his early estimate is that ending free trade would slice 2.5 per cent from the Canadian economy. He says the initial shock might be more severe.“That’s the ballpark,” said Ciuriak, who will publish his study with the C.D. Howe Institute.“That actual pathway to that (eventual) figure may be worse.”