Some of the industries top tech resources for nonprofits have partnered up for the 2010 GreatNonprofits Science & Technology Campaign, recognizing science and technology organizations making a difference in the lives of people everywhere. Starting August 1, participants will get the chance to share first-person stories about an organization they feel makes a difference in their community. The nonprofit that gathers 10 or more positive reviews throughout the month will make the Greatnonprofits Top-Rated Science & Technology Nonprofts List.
Greatnonprofits launched the campaign, in partnership with Guidestar, NTEN, TechSoup Global, Association for Women in Science and Tonic, to “identity nonprofits in this area [science and technology] — whether it’s through advancing scientific knowledge, offering education resources, or employing tech solutions to solve local and global problems.” The hope is that stories from donors, volunteers, clients or any one else willing to share, will help encourage others to donate and/or volunteer.
The campaign ends August 31. See the NTEN blog for more details on how you can tell your story and inspire others to take action in the fields of technology and science.
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged Association for Women in Science, Education, GreatNonprofits, guidestar, Non-profit organization, nten, philanthropy, science and technology campaign, technology, TechSoup, tell your story
Don’t know what to look for before you donate to a nonprofit? Don’t worry — you are not alone.
With online donation sites like JustGive.org and Network for Good it is now easier and more convenient to donate than ever before. But how do can donors know if their organization will be efficient and effective in spending donor money?
Sites like Charity Navigator and Guidestar have supplied donors with the legitimate forms and facts about nonprofits, but not a whole lot of explanation. The answer is out there, but that takes time and energy.
In a recent article, Si Cantwell from Star News Online outlines the best way to evaluate a nonprofit before you donate. She walks readers through form 990s (a document administered by the IRS for all 501 c(3) tax-exempt organizations), audited financials, un-audited statements of income and expenses, and other standard information.
To find out how you can determine where, and to what programs, your charitable donation will go toward visit Star News online.
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged 990-n e-postcard, charitable giving, charity navigator, donor help, donorschoose, form 990, guidestar, helping small donors, justgive.org, justgiving, network for good
By Heidi Genrich
Guidestar, the mega-database of nonprofits and their Form 990s, has launched a site that gathers and organizes nonprofit reviews from GiveWell, GreatNonprofits, Philanthropedia and Root Cause. Most of Guidestar’s parnter sites are all charity evaluators that survey charity experts, though GreatNonprofits utilizes user-submitted reviews. Up until this point, Guidstar has only been primarily useful to those who need know more about a specific nonprofit, but their new platform, , is aimed at directing users to quality nonprofits within various cause categories.
This development is also interesting in light of the joint press release put out by GuideStar, Charity Navigator, GiveWell, Philanthropedia, GreatNonprofits and Philanthropy Action last year that condemned the use of overhead ratios (i.e. how much was spent on programs vs. administration vs. fundraising) and finances to rate and compare nonprofit organizations. There has been a positive shift in the community towards prioritizing the nonprofit’s social impact when judging their programs and operations.
Posted in Administration, Fundraising
Tagged givewell, great nonprofits, GreatNonprofits, guidestar, guidestar review site, nonprofit organization, nonprofits, online reviews, overhead ratios, partnerships, Philanthropedia, Root Cause, TakeAction@Guidestar
By Heidi Genrich
My entire holiday season was made on December 1st, 2009 when Charity Navigator, GiveWell, Great Nonprofits, Guidestar and Philanthropedia issued a joint press release condemning the use of overhead ratios and executive salaries to evaluate nonprofits.
Judging a nonprofit’s quality by how much they spend on laser printers vs. African wells, arbitrarily creating universal budget guidelines for all types of organizations, always seemed a little silly. Even if the overhead-ratio-executive-salary method of comparing nonprofits worked in specific circumstances, it made no attempt to measure the actual impact of their programs.
Tim Ogden put the problem best in his post on Philanthropy Action:
In short, picking a charity based on the lowest overhead ratio is like buying the cheapest car that money can buy. You might spend less in the short run but it’s inevitably going to let you down.
Ken Berger, the CEO and President of Charity Navigator, may have sent the biggest waves through the nonprofit community with his statement that “too many donors are paying too much attention to measures like overhead.” Charity Navigator became the web’s nonprofit gold standard precisely because it encouraged donors to judge and compare nonprofits based on their overhead ratios. This is a turning point that is long overdue.
As a longtime critic of overhead ratio evaluations, Dan Pallota’s post on the press release may be the most interesting. The next step is to figure out an accessible standard by which the average donor can evaluate the >1 million nonprofit organizations in the US.