Happy New Year! Thank You, Friends for these End of Year Resources!

Photo of sparkler with heart shaped core by Katheryn Laible

Photo “New Year’s Love” by Katheryn Laible

Happy New Year! We thought you might appreciate the following:
Let’s start with this fascinating piece on the history of New Year’s and its traditions from History.com
Then, let’s reflect on our own recent history. Here’s a blog post on a 7-Step Year in Review from Strength Leader Deb Ingino to help guide us! Deb is great at quickly boiling things down to key takeaways. Here, she picks a particularly timely nugget out of a great podcast from John C. Maxwell, while offering the link to his full 7 steps. I found it well worth carving out time for!
Many of us are still doing year-end giving! Today, my dear friend Nancy brought this New York Times newsletter: A giving guide to my attention. There’s a lot of useful stuff in here. As we might expect, it offers resources from a much more global viewpoint than we do, but also noted that LOCAL giving — including to local news sources —  is really important.
Along those lines…this piece written with David Okorn of the Long Island Community Foundation,“Foundations for the Common Good — A Call to Action” remains timely. If you want to quick-update it to account for the impacts of the last few years, just underline the sense of urgency in triplicate. The article explains growing holes in the LI safety net and how we might fill them. It also shares how the LI Community Foundation itself helps givers make the best use of their philanthropic dollars, as well as how it serves issues they’ve identified as critical directly.
Here’s a list of JUST A FEW incredible local organizations that could use our support...use it as a starter guide. We look forward to sharing many more in the New Year!
We’re also going to keep repeating this: The idea that a not for profit organization should be judged primarily by the % going to admin and fundraising is just plain wrong! Find out why in this article written with Marian Conway of the NY Community Bank Foundation: “Stop the Nonprofit Budget Fantasy. It’s Not Right!”  Marian’s run a foundation for years and in one way or another served and studied countless organizations. She literally has a Ph.D awarded for her dissertation on “What are the general operating expenses for nonprofits and who pays them.” She knows what she’s talking about. Please listen to her!!!
Finally, New Year – New Beginnings. Let’s talk a little bit about resolutions. Considering joining the Dry January tradition? Dr. Jeffery Reynolds, CEO of Family & Children’s Association has some great tips that I think can also be applied to helping follow through on other pledges, especially when paired with this good advice from Forbes.com on how to actually keep your resolutions.
Among mine, resolutions tend to involve committing to lifelong learning and development. Toward that end, I find the Farnam Street Newsletter to be something I regularly open and intend to dig more deeply into next year. This week, among other things, they offered snippets from their most downloaded podcasts. As for just a few favorite sources of local guidance, I really appreciate the Fair Media Council channel on YouTube, and everything Vision Long Island puts on its Vimeo.
I also resolve to more deeply appreciate our wonderful local treasures. Thank you, Cindy Mardenfeld, for sharing this Newsday article on the membership perks of Long Island attractions(it’s Newsday, so, please forgive the paywall). It covers all sorts of great museums, theaters, kids places and parks. The best part is knowing they’ve hardly scratched the surface!
Let me know your year-end reflections and resources, and what you’d like to see focused on in 2022. Thanks!!!

It’s Giving Tuesday. Please Give Today, Tomorrow, Whenever You Can.

GivingTuesday is a global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world. In response to the COVID-19 crisis, #GivingTuesdayNow has been launched as a global day of unity TODAY, May 5th 2020.

Before this all happened, Long Island was already suffering increasing holes in the fabric of philanthropy that makes our local nonprofit organizations possible.

Special events had become hugely important stopgaps for organizations. They’ve all been cancelled. These groups now REQUIRE our direct support. You can check our newsletter archives to find 100s of great local organizations that could REALLY use our help right now!!!

Some Guidance on Giving Wisely

A few months ago, we sat down with Marian Conway of the New York Community Bank Foundation. She offered her highly educated, deeply experienced view on better ways to evaluate non-profit effectiveness and the problems inherent in simplistic, hard line methods focused on budget percentages, especially for human service organizations and local organizations that are run by neighbors who know and care about the unique needs of our communities.

“Foundations for the Common Good — A Call to Action” written with Executive Director David Okorn touches on similar themes, while explaining how the LI Community Foundation that he serves helps givers make the best use of their philanthropic dollars.

A Few Good Places to Give

Recently, The Long Island Community Foundation launched a COVID-19 Philanthropic response fund to aid nonprofit service providers meeting emergent and critical needs affecting our local region. Thanks to their generous donors, as of yesterday they had granted out $777,000 to struggling nonprofits.

The United Way of LI is collaborating with Long Island Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (LIVOAD) and their network of nonprofit organizations in the region on a Response Fund For COVID-19. This fund helps financially-strained LI families during the current health and economic crisis.

Housing Help is providing a wealth of information for folks in financial crisis and with other human service needs — as well as some inspiring stories of folks stepping up to help!

Regarding major local food banks, Long Island Cares has information about mobile food services. Here’s news from The INN, which does a lot for hunger and homelessness. Here’s Island Harvest.

The Safe Center website and Facebook Page offers free, confidential resources for those suffering abuse.

The Family & Children’s Association serves those in need of human services in Nassau County. The Family Service League similarly serves Suffolk. Many smaller organizations, like the Tri-CYA do incredible work on a very local level, while the Health & Welfare Council of LI is busting it’s butt to get LI Counted AND deal with the massive human services crisis!

Of course, human service organizations get a lot of attention right now — rightfully so! Still, if you are passionate about the environment, the arts, science, animal rescue, preservation, good governance, anything else — including your favorite mom & pop shop! — PLEASE FOCUS YOUR GIVING THERE, especially on LOCAL organizations that are focused right here on Long Island.

Like Veterans: We are grateful to all the VSOs who are giving it their best to stay connected and keep serving both fellow veterans and the broader community. We continue to follow Patchogue VFW Commander Dave Rogers, who is providing all sorts of information. Here’s a great interview with him on USA Warrior Stories, talking about local community work, their COVID-free, fun, online “Coffee with a Veteran” program and more. Thank you for all you do, Dave. We appreciate it..

This interview includes a note that organizations like these are often terrible at asking for money at times like now because they are worried about taking from other groups. DON’T WAIT FOR A GROUP YOU VALUE TO ASK, ESPECIALLY IF YOU VALUE THEIR HUMILITY.

Case in point that will hate us for saying this: Vision Long Island (which, in full-disclosure, Trudy is proud to serve as a Co-Chair of). These guys have been working day and night. We doubt they’ve spent much, if any, time soliciting sponsors to do so, and they usually have a highly-educational 1000-person event in June.

In fact, if you reach out to them, they’ll probably be the first to tell you who else to give to!

Marian Conway: “Stop the Nonprofit Budget Fantasy — It’s Not Right.”

Photo of Marian Conway by Christopher Appoldt

All she’s asking for is reasonable compensation for nonprofit employees to do the work that has to be done. The way it is now, a non-profit often doesn’t even get reimbursement for reasonable expenses incurred while providing services! She won’t say it’s not fair – because life isn’t fair — but it’s not right!!!

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Foundations for the Common Good: A Call to Action

A conversation with David Okorn of the Long Island Community Foundation on making philanthropy easy, fun and effective, and why it’s so important.

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