How many of your first-time donors go on to give again? What kind of impact would it have on your fundraising if you could retain more donors each year? We’ve asked two of the best fundraising experts to share their secrets. Join our free webinar on Tuesday, September 24 at 1pm EDT to learn from Jay Love and Tom Ahern as they show you how to create a communication plan that will help you retain more donors and raise more money. Register here.If you’d like to see more long-term benefits from your year-end fundraising and donor acquisition efforts, you do not want to miss this session.Turn First-Time Donors Into Repeat DonorsTuesday, September 24th 2013 1 pm EDT
What surprised you the most about #GivingTuesday? Because I experience and witness street harassment in Washington, DC, I can see the immediate importance of CASS’ mission. CASS mobilizes the community, through online and offline activism, to end public sexual harassment and assault in the DC metropolitan area. The campaign caught my eye and I was inspired to donate to it on #GivingTuesday. After I became a donor, I was delighted to receive some of the best post-donation communication ever! CASS has become one of my favorite nonprofit customers that we serve in DC. Thank you, Zosia, for sharing these details with us! If you want to put on a great #GivingTuesday campaign in 2015, we can help. Sign up to get Network for Good’s #GivingTuesday resources sent directly to your inbox. ZS: We started reaching out to donors four weeks in advance with soft touches via email. A week or two before, we gave all of them a call and asked folks to pledge. During the campaign, we reached out via email and social media. Afterward, everyone who donated received a special thank you email and a handwritten card. Zosia Sztykowski: We set a very ambitious goal for our end-of year-campaign—triple what we had done in the previous year—and based on our experience, we knew we’d have to get a strong start on #GivingTuesday for that to work. #GivingTuesday and New Year’s Eve are always the best giving days for us. Last year, Network for Good customer Collective Action for Safe Spaces (CASS) had a great #GivingTuesday campaign and won our prize for Best Social Campaign. The organization raised more than $17,000, came in fourth on our leaderboard for number of donors, and exceeded its original goal by 43%. ZS: We’re planning to reach out to more big donors way in advance to build a lot of momentum for #GivingTuesday. ZS: Yup, just one—me! Needless to say, I had some pretty serious tunnel vision going in late November/early December. But our volunteers are one of our strongest assets. They get the word out and solicit people in their networks. Every time we run a campaign like this, we don’t just reach multiples of our dollar goal, we also multiply the length our donor list, and I think this is directly attributable to our grassroots strategy. If a volunteer team is well organized and engaged—trained, prepared with all the materials they need, and knowledgeable about the organization and its fiscal needs—then they will follow through. Better yet, they’ll make it fun. It’s really about starting a conversation with volunteers that continues throughout the process. Because CASS had such great success on #GivingTuesday 2014, I wanted to do a Q&A with Zosia Sztykowski, the nonprofit’s executive director, to find out how they put together an amazing campaign with just one paid staff member. How did you plan and set goals? ZS: Plan, plan, plan. Read about others’ successful strategies. Get your emails and your social media materials ready well in advance. Know that you’ll need all hands on deck on #GivingTuesday. Have a schedule—but be prepared to throw it out the window if you come up with a better idea at the last minute. How did you manage it all with very few paid staff members? CASS only has one paid staff member, right? And how did you make sure volunteers followed through with their commitments to help make it great? What is the number one piece of advice you would give to nonprofits doing #GivingTuesday for the first time? What will you differently this year? ZS: It’s amazing how generous everyone is even when every other organization is asking for donations at the same time. There’s something very touching about that. It really is a day about giving in the broad sense of the word. In 2014, we managed to quadruple what we raised in 2013 on #GivingTuesday because of this generosity. How did you reach out to donors before, during, and after?
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:
Posted on January 29, 2014August 10, 2016Click 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)The following was originally posted on PLOS BlogsPLOS Medicine and the MHTF review highlights of the second successful collection, as part of their 3 Year partnership focusing on improving Maternal Health globally.Back in late 2012 the Maternal Health Task Force, at the Harvard School of Public Health, and PLOS Medicine issued a call for papers on the theme ‘Maternal Health is Women’s Health’, chosen in order to recognise that a women’s health is of crucial importance through her lifetime, and not just during pregnancy and labour.The breadth of the research that has been submitted to PLOS since the call has been of great quality and impact. In this blog, we’d like to highlight just some articles in the collection that represent a selection of the important work recommended to alleviate the poor health, low educational attainment and low socioeconomic status adversities affecting maternal health, that women and girls of experience throughout their lifetimes.To continue reading, visit the original post at PLOS. For more on Year 3 of the PLOS-MHTF collection on maternal health, including guidelines for submitting to the collection, visit the Year 3 call for papers. To read articles published in the Year 1 and Year 2 collections, visit PLOS Collections.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:
ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on March 31, 2014August 10, 2016Click 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)mHealth for Maternal Health is an ongoing blog series that aims to share the knowledge and experiences of academics, implementers and funders from the mHealth and maternal health communities. As part of the series, we reached out to experts to gain insight on pressing questions around financing, partnerships, challenges and innovations in mHealth for Maternal Health. The post below includes responses by Patty Mechael, Executive Director of the mHealth Alliance and Ken Warman, Senior Program Officer at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.The last few years have seen a proliferation of mHealth pilots, particularly in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. A review published in PLOS Medicine showed that more often than not, these pilots failed to reach scale, leading to the coining of the term “mHealth pilotitis”.Due to a lack of coordination between organizations, pilots often lead to duplication of efforts and can take scarce time and resources away from local governments. Uganda’s decision in 2012 to place a moratorium on mHealth pilots was a wake-up call for the ICT4D community that perhaps it was time to take a step back and reconsider the scatter-shot approach that had become the norm. However, while organizations are eager to scale up their mHealth interventions, it has quickly become apparent that there might not be an easy cure for pilotitis. Despite the number of pilots, there is a lack of a strong evidence base and consensus regarding what would work at scale.To gauge where the mHealth community should focus its efforts moving forward, we asked experts and donors the following question: Do we still need more pilots in mHealth or do we know enough to say what works and should be scaled?According to Patty Mechael, Executive Director of the mHealth Alliance, “When asked the question on whether we need more pilots- my general response is absolutely not – except in the increasingly rare case of a completely new use of mobile technology within the health sector or for health promotion that has never been tried. We do know a great deal about what works. The reality is that, you can make almost anything work in a pilot phase with enough undivided attention and resources.Rather than viewing the development of a successful mHealth intervention as a binary transition between the pilot phase and scale-up, organizations should be willing to take an iterative approach. Mechael adds, “The latest thinking is to design for scale from the outset and approach implementation as well as complementary monitoring and evaluation in phases- similar to any technology development and/or program life cycle- where by assessments of each phase informs the next- including the decision to abandon course or adapt when something does not seem to be working in the early stages.”In the poetic words of Samuel Becket, “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.”However, for an organization to successfully adopt an iterative approach, it is critical that donors also shift their mindset. According to Ken Warman, Senior Program Officer at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, “Many mHealth interventions take several iterations to become operational and integrated into a health workers daily routine. Most pilots are not sufficiently funded to reach this milestone so they are never really adopted and embraced for going to scale. I feel we, the mService community are still focused on vertical, niche applications and are not yet paying enough attention to larger, systemic issues and working towards an integrated ecosystem servicing a broad array of user needs.”For mHealth to move to the next phase in its development and become integrated into health systems, there need to be collective efforts by developers, implementers, donors and governments to work together to collect robust evidence about what works, and act nimbly to adapt and improve programs at different phases in their life-cycle.Do you have an opinion on the role mHealth can play to improve maternal health? What do you see as the biggest advantages of mHealth? The limitations? If you are interested in submitting a blog post for our ongoing guest blog series on mHealth for Maternal Health, please email MHTF Research Assistant Yogeeta Manglani.Share this:
It may seem too early to think about your year-end campaign, but trust us…it’s not! The final two months of the year are a crucial time for nonprofits. The numbers speak for themselves — 30% of annual giving occurs in December, and 10% occurs on the last 3 days of the year. Now is the time to start planning how you’ll boost your fundraising efforts to attract the generosity of people who are focused on giving at this point in the year.The best way to create a strategic year-end plan is to base it on your donor data. Using this data will optimize your efforts, ensuring you don’t waste resources. In this post, we’ll share five steps for using data to inform your year-end strategy.1) Segment Your DonorsDonor segmentation is important for two reasons. First, it gives you a better idea of who your donors are, how involved they are in their chosen cause, and their giving habits. Second, it provides a way to deliver relevant, customized communications that will pique donors’ interest. The more personal you get with your communications, the more your supporters will feel like part of your team. Segmenting your donor list serves as the foundation of your year-end strategy. Use our Donor Segmentation Cheat Sheet to get your donor data in order today.2) Recruit Top Advocates, Participants, and Volunteers for a Peer-to-Peer CampaignPeer-to-peer fundraising (also known as social fundraising or simply P2P) leverages your network of supporters to fundraise for you. Social fundraising campaigns are most successful when the campaign has a firm deadline — which is why they’re perfect for year-end fundraising. You can tie your P2P campaign to the theme of giving thanks, the holidays, or plan one that celebrates the upcoming new year and ends on January 1.Once you’ve segmented your list according to the detailed data on your contacts, you’ll know who to recruit for your P2P campaign. Focus on those who are consistently involved with your work, whether they volunteer, contribute financially, or simply spread the word about your organization.3) Promote Your Monthly Giving Program Across All ChannelsThe end of the year is an ideal time to promote your monthly giving program. People are in a giving mood, and they’re setting resolutions for the new year. Make it easy for them by inviting them to join your team of active, monthly supporters. Make the most of your monthly giving program in your year-end campaigns. Feature it in your email and direct mail appeals, promote it on your social media accounts, make it the default donation frequency on your giving page.You can promote your program across all your channels in a variety of ways. The first step in gaining new supporters is to make them aware of the opportunity. Again, use your segmentation to send messages customized to each group of donors.4) Approach a Major Donor for a Matching GiftMatching gifts increase not only the revenue per solicitation, but also the response rate of campaigns. There are several reasons why matching gift campaigns work, not the least of which is the desire to be part of a meaningful movement.Year-end campaigns gives you a reason to approach a major donor for a matching gift. Again, this time of year is when people are already in a giving mood, and they’re looking for opportunities to get involved. If you present a major donor with an innovative campaign idea at this time of year, the chances are high that she or he will agree. Scan your data to see which major donors are likely to be open to this idea and focus on those donors first.5) Build Direct Mail and Email Templates Specifically for Year-EndSwitch things up by creating special branding for your year-end communications and donation page. Celebrating the end of the year will get people freshly excited as they see you making the most of this time of year. These banners and templates might include snippets of what you and your supporters have accomplished together throughout the year. Use your data to see which donors celebrate which holidays and customize your direct mail and email templates accordingly.6) Create a CalendarAs you’re brainstorming ideas and creating to-do lists, don’t forget to plan out your calendar in detail. Once you’ve decided what your year-end strategy will consist of, create a calendar that outlines the tasks associated with each campaign and tactic and specifies who within your organization will be responsible for each. From #GivingTuesday to holiday cards to major donor phone calls, assigning dates to the campaigns and tactics you intend to implement will ensure nothing gets lost in the hubbub. You’ll also be able to identify opportunities you missed by noting any holes in your calendar that could be filled. Schedule your social media posts, note which hashtags you’ll use, and include links to relevant materials.Be Sure to Send Your Thank YousStart the new year right! Follow up your year-end campaign by using the first week in January to send your thank yous, expressing gratitude for the role your supporters play in the work you’re doing together. These thank yous will reinforce the good vibes and motivate donors to continue their support.Close out the year with a bang by taking advantage of your donor data. Create a targeted, effective strategy by following the steps we’ve outlined and rest easy knowing that your strategy is based on a firm foundation.
ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read: Posted on March 30, 2016February 26, 2018Click 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)We are excited to announce the upcoming dialogue, How Zika Is Shaping the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Agenda, on Tuesday, April 12 in Washington, DC. This event is part of the Maternal Health Task Force’s Advancing Dialogue on Maternal Health Series, in partnership with UNFPA and the Wilson Center.As an international public health emergency with strong links to birth defects, the rampant spread of the Zika virus has garnered significant attention in the maternal health community. With both the transmission and implications of the virus intrinsically tied to the most disadvantaged women and their sexual and reproductive health and rights, the Zika outbreak presents an opportunity to set the conversation on access, quality, and equity of sexual and reproductive health care in affected countries.Interested in attending? See the invitation from the Wilson Center below to learn more details and register for the event.When: Tuesday, April 12, 2016 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm EDT. Light fare included.Where: The Wilson Center, 6th Floor Auditorium, Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, One Woodrow Wilson Plaza, 1300 Pennsylvania, Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20004On February 1, the World Health Organization declared the cluster of microcephaly cases associated with the Zika virus an international public health emergency. The virus is spreading throughout more than 20 countries and territories in the Americas predominantly via the Aedes mosquito, but sexual transmission is also possible. Some governments of affected countries, such as Brazil and El Salvador, have issued advisories to women to avoid pregnancy – in El Salvador’s case, for the next two years.However, women in many of these countries have limited if any access to contraceptive and reproductive health services to prevent pregnancy. If they do become pregnant, finding and using maternal and newborn health services is equally challenging. The outbreak is especially detrimental to the most disadvantaged women in low income and rural areas, where sanitation is poor and resources are low.How can the global health community frame and lead the dialogue about women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights in Zika-infected areas? How can the Zika response be an opportunity to bolster health infrastructure and capacity in affected countries? Join us April 12 at the Wilson Center as we explore these questions and discuss solutions.PresentationsMarcia Castro, Associate Professor of Demography, Department of Global Health and Population, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthJaime Nadal Roig, Representative to Brazil, United Nations Population FundPanelAlaka Basu, Senior Fellow, United Nations FoundationAnne Burke, Associate Professor of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Johns Hopkins University School of MedicineChloë Cooney, Director of Global Advocacy, Planned Parenthood Federation of AmericaFrançoise Girard, President, International Women’s Health CoalitionRepresentative from the Pan American Health Organization (Invited)ModeratorsLaura Laski, Chief of Sexual and Reproductive Health, United Nations Population FundRoger-Mark De Souza, Director of Population, Environmental Security, and Resilience, Wilson CenterRemarksCongressman Eliot Engel, U.S. Member of the House of Representatives, New York 16th Congressional DistrictEvent DetailsRegister for the event here.Want to attend but can’t?Tune in to the live or archived webcast at WilsonCenter.org (archived webcasts go up after the meeting).Media guests, including TV crews, should RSVP directly with Francesca Cameron. Media bringing heavy electronics MUST indicate this in their response so they may be admitted into the building.Join the conversation on Twitter at @NewSecurityBeat and @MHTF and by following #MHdialogue. To find more coverage of these issues on the Wilson Center’s blog, NewSecurityBeat.org.See a video of the event>>Share this:
The Ministry of Education is at an advanced stage in recruiting 90 reading coaches, who will be deployed to assist teachers in the poorest performing primary and all-age schools across the island.Portfolio Minister, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, made the disclosure at an awards luncheon for teachers held on October 25, at the Jamaica Observer headquarters in Kingston.The placement of reading coaches in schools is part of measures by the Education Ministry to lift literacy standards, and achieve 85 per cent mastery among grade four students by 2015. Already, the number of literacy specialists has been increased to include nine regional coordinators.Minister Thwaites said that the recruitment of the reading coaches, which is being supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), will assist in improving literacy in boys.He pointed out that while major achievement has being made in the mastery of literacy at the grade four level, the results from the nation’s boys are still behind that of the girls.“The level for the girls is very high but the boys are not at that level at all…what we are going to have to do, is to bring the level of male achievement to equal that of the females,” he said.The results from the Grade Four Literacy Test, administered in June this year, showed 76 per cent mastery by the age cohort, which is nine percentage points below the target for 2015.The Education Minister noted that while progress is being made in literacy, students are not doing as well in numeracy, achieving only 59 per cent mastery in the Grade Four Numeracy Test.As part of efforts to address this issue, mathematics resource teachers, who can provide support to teachers at the primary level, will be identified and deployed in order to strengthen capacity to effectively deliver the curriculum.The special luncheon honoured approximately 22 teachers from the Eastern Region, who have assisted with the production and sales of the Jamaica Observer’s educational publications.The teachers have actively employed the use of the newspaper’s products, such as the weekly Study Centre and TEENage magazine, to aid in their students’ education.Jessie Ripoll Primary School copped the Top Primary School award, while Oberlin High School received the Top High School award. Story Highlights The Ministry of Education is at an advanced stage in recruiting 90 reading coaches. They will be deployed to assist teachers in the poorest performing primary and all-age schools across the island. Minister Thwaites said that the recruitment of the reading coaches will assist in improving literacy in boys.
RED DEER, Alta. – Brady Flett says he knew within days of the deaths of an Alberta couple and their daughter that the supposedly grief-stricken son was involved somehow.Flett, though, did not see Jason Klaus as a killer at first, despite details he kept dropping that pointed to Gordon, Sandra and Monica Klaus having been murdered.“What I wanted to believe was maybe he owed some bad people a whole lot of money, and they ended up taking out his family for that reason,” said Flett, who was Monica’s boss and friend at Vortex Production Services in Stettler, Alta.“Never did I want to believe that he would do that.”The Klauses were shot and killed early on the morning of Dec. 8, 2013. Their farmhouse just outside Castor, Alta., was burned to the ground. The family dog was killed and left in the yard.Flett was a key witness in the trial of Klaus and his accomplice, Joshua Frank, who were sentenced last month to life in prison. Flett recently discussed his participation in the case with the Red Deer Advocate.During the trial, court heard that Klaus had a cocaine and gambling addiction and forged cheques on his parents account. He offered Frank money to kill the family. Frank told police he killed them because he was scared Klaus would shoot him if he didn’t.The dead dog immediately raised suspicions with police.After a number of disturbing conversations with Klaus, Flett was convinced that he was directly responsible. On Jan. 15, 2014, Flett volunteered to become a police informant and encouraged Klaus to open up.He went to police after Klaus told him bizarre stories of ghosts providing details of the crime, including the kind of gun used, where it was dumped and the use of aviation fuel to start the fire.On one occasion, standing with Flett in the debris-filled basement of the remains of his family home, Klaus performed a chilling pantomime. Pointing his finger like a gun, he mimicked how his parents and sister were killed.“That’s the time where I had no doubt in my mind this was done out of a pile of anger,” Flett said.From mid-January 2014 to the arrest of Klaus and Frank the following August, every conversation and phone call Flett had with Klaus was secretly recorded by police.The evidence he gathered built a case against Klaus and led to the RCMP deciding to try to ensnare him in a four-month undercover sting.Police informant was a lonely role and Flett could not breathe a word until his testimony was completed at the trial, which ran for six weeks last October and November.“It was a long four years because my wife is the only person who knew anything of my involvement. My kids didn’t know. Nobody at work knew.”It was especially hard on his wife, Norma.“There were times I’d be gone from 2 o’clock in the afternoon to three in the morning and there was zero communication I could have with her.”She feared for their own children and five grandchildren. She even looked at moving to another country to get far away from Klaus and Frank.Flett said he was fully aware of the peril if Klaus had found out his role.“If you can take out your own family, taking out my family wouldn’t have been a big issue.”His wife’s fears were heightened when lawyers for Klaus and Frank went before a judge last August to ask that their charges be stayed, because the case had taken too long to go to trial. She was terrified the two would walk free.After 11 tense days, a judge dismissed the applications.Testifying in court, Flett was asked why he got involved.“For Monica,” he said.Flett still thinks about his executive assistant and close friend every day, he said.A photo of her and her beloved dog, Patches, hangs in Vortex’s lobby.“Monica sat side by side with me for 10 years,” Flett said.“There’s nothing I did that Monica didn’t know of and there was nothing that I needed done that Monica didn’t take care of.”