Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Foundation Center Offers "Tools and Resources for Assessing Social Impact"

The Foundation Center, the nation's leading authority on philanthropy, has launched an online database of proven approaches to measuring and analyzing the impact of social investments. As philanthropists and the nonprofit community shift towards more strategic approaches to get a "social return," evaluation activities must also operate at a higher level. TRASI ("Tools and Resources for Assessing Social Impact") addresses these growing needs by offering tools and methodologies that place a premium on evidence and metrics in tracking progress.

"Measuring the effectiveness of social programs has always been a challenge because it's not just about the numbers. TRASI helps organizations meet that challenge and go beyond simply determining whether projected outcomes were achieved," said Lawrence T. McGill, the Foundation Center's vice president for research. "The organizations that have generously shared their own strategic methods for measuring impact will greatly help others to find a solution that is a good fit for them."

Developed in partnership with McKinsey & Co., the assessment approaches in TRASI were authored by a range of organizations, including social investors, foundations, NGOs, and microfinance institutions. The Better Business Bureau, USAID, Annie E. Casey Foundation, and the Center for Effective Philanthropy are among them. The resources in the database range from off-the-shelf tools and concrete methodologies to generalized best practices and are complemented by multimedia features and social networking tools.

Each approach has been carefully indexed against a common set of key elements and presented in a way that makes it easy to compare their relative merits. The key elements include: who the approach applies to, what kind of organization or evaluation the approach is best suited for, and the costs and techniques involved in its implementation. Each approach was thoroughly reviewed by an Expert Review Panel convened by the New York University Stern School of Business.

Online Kick-off Event
The Center is hosting an online event to kick-off the TRASI launch. Beginning at 2:00 pm EDT on Wednesday, September 22, 2010, a live chat with some of the individuals from the Expert Review Panel will be held. Anyone interested in learning more about impact assessment and the TRASI platform is invited to attend by visiting http://trasicommunity.ning.com/.

About the Foundation Center
Established in 1956 and today supported by close to 550 foundations, the Foundation Center is the nation's leading authority on philanthropy, connecting nonprofits and the grantmakers supporting them to tools they can use and information they can trust. The Center maintains the most comprehensive database on U.S. and, increasingly, global grantmakers and their grants — a robust, accessible knowledge bank for the sector. It also operates research, education, and training programs designed to advance knowledge of philanthropy at every level. Thousands of people visit the Center's web site each day and are served in its five regional library/learning centers and its network of 450 funding information centers located in public libraries, community foundations, and educational institutions nationwide and beyond. For more information, please visit http://www.foundationcenter.org/ or call (212) 620-4230.

Monday, September 20, 2010

An Eye of the Future Conference in NYC September 28th

For Nonprofit Executives, Board Members, Marketing Managers, Fundraisers & Students

Join us for a unique, one-day educational event for nonprofit professionals on Tuesday, September 28th from 8:30am to 4:30pm at the Down Town Association Club.

An Eye of the Future will feature three panels of corporate and nonprofit experts as they explore cutting-edge strategies in Marketing, Board Leadership and Fundraising to help nonprofits sustain their organizations in today's uncertain economy.

Speakers include:

-Anu Gandhi, Director of Consumer Marketing for American Heart Association's Go Red Campaign, will discuss how to make your nonprofit stand out in a crowd of worthy causes

-Beth Stellato, VP, Goldman Sachs and Manager of the company's partner placement program, will discuss recruiting young professionals

-Rob Carter, Vice Chairman of Changing Our World and a global fundraising strategist, will discuss how to go from predicament to partnership when funding your cause

-Scott Roen, VP of American Express OPEN Forum and Steve Rubel, VP of Digital Insights, Edelman PR, will discuss social media techniques to promote your brand and cause online

-Asif Talukdar, Director of Business Development for GuideStar, will address how to position your nonprofit as a viable organization

And more! To register, email: events@ebsr.org or call: 866.287.3937

This event is open to ALL nonprofit organizations.