Nonprofit Chronicles

Journalism about nonprofit organizations and their impact

The devastation in Houston was terribly sad. So, in its own way, was the philanthropic response, particularly from business. Big brands including Amazon, Apple, Google, Starbucks, Walmart and many more are making donations to the American Red Cross, and encouraging their customers to do the same. Former President Obama retweeted: Help those affected by #HurricaneHarvey. …

Continue reading

A few things you might not know about Detroit: So many people are moving into the downtown and midtown areas that worries have arisen about displacing the poor. When the Detroit Pistons and the Detroit Red Wings move into the new $700m Little Caesars sports complex next fall, Detroit will be the only city in …

Continue reading

I spent last weekend in Charleston, WV, with my daughter, her husband and my two grandsons. They’re doing well. The same can’t be said about the state where they live. Nearly one in five people living in WV fall below the poverty line, which is $23,834 for a family of four. The percentage of children living …

Continue reading

AmazonSmile brings to mind the observation of late great media critic A.J. Liebling about The New York Times’ fundraising campaigns on behalf of its Neediest Cases.  “Readers are invited to send in money,” Liebling wrote, “while the newspaper generously agrees to accept the thanks of the beneficiaries.” AmazonSmile is bit like that. The website, created by Amazon.com in 2013, offers …

Continue reading

Voluntourism has been getting a bad name lately. “Unsatisfying as it may be, we ought to acknowledge the truth that we, as amateurs, often don’t have much to offer,” Jacob Kushner wrote recently in The New York Times. On Medium, Katia Savchuck wrote about traveling abroad with Habitat for Humanity and asked, “Was I doing …

Continue reading

Charity begins at home, they say. Take care of those nearby, and then turn outwards. This a problem for the National Football League. We’re told that Super Bowl 50 — alas, no Roman numerals this year, the “L” just wasn’t portentous enough — will be “the most philanthropic and giving Super Bowl ever.” The 50 Fund, …

Continue reading

Corporate philanthropy is a tricky business. Whether charitable donations come directly from a company or from a company-sponsored foundation, they ought to serve not just the charity but the company’s business interests. Companies, after all, are giving away other people’s money, namely, money that they have been entrusted with by shareholders seeking financial return. Fearful of controversy, …

Continue reading