Thursday, May 28, 2009

Nonprofit Report Announced by NYCON

Standards for Common Sense: A Practical Guide to Basic Accountability Standards for New York Nonprofits, published by NYCON, was supported by Council Services Plus and the Dyson Foundation. This booklet, available to download for free here, is a practical guide for the average nonprofit seeking a reasonable understanding of what accountability standards are, who is promoting them, what related state laws say, and how to think about the choices presented. NYCON has selected eight of the most basic issues involving governance structure and practice, i.e. board size, board compensation, conflict of interest policies, board member independence, term limits, frequency of meetings, audit requirements and the creation of audit committees. The booklet outlines each issue, compares and discusses the standards set by laws or regulations and five different standards setting bodies - the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance, the Standards for Excellence Institute, the Panel on the Nonprofit Sector, the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits.

In this 2nd Edition, NYCON has also added a section on Standards of Financial Accountability. This section explores guidelines for percentage of expenditures on program and fundraising activities along with the level of net assets relative to annual spending. Download your copy now.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Nonprofit Media Roundup

The following articles were offered by the Minnesota Council of Foundations:

Nonprofits Fear Charitable Giving Will be Cut by More Than 10%
Investment News: The banking and finance industries make up 25% of foundation support, study says.

Donors Find Gift Annuities Can Stop Giving
Wall Street Journal: The economic downturn could cause some charities to have trouble meeting their annuity obligations.

From the Answer Desk: How Can Foundations Avoid or Address Financial Emergencies?Foundation Center: There’s no single answer that will be right for all organizations. Here are 10 resources that may help.

Recession Slams U.S. Arts Organizations
Philanthropy News Digest: U.S. Art Organizations fight the economy and the perception that donations to the Arts are frivolous in tough economic times.

Nonprofit Groups Receive Mixed Results in Obama’s Budget
The Chronicle of Philanthropy: The $3.5-trillion federal budget that President Obama has proposed for 2010 would affect federal programs in a variety of ways that affect charities.

Highlights from President Obama’s Budget Proposal
The Washington Grantmakers Daily: Seven articles about President Obama’s budget and how it will impact different nonprofits.

Michelle Obama Announces $50 Million Fund for Nonprofits
The Washington Post: Michelle Obama unveils Social Innovation Fund. Initiative to provide capital to support innovative nonprofit organizations and to help social entrepreneurs expand.

Philanthropy Adapts to the Obama Era
The American Prospect: One philanthropist reports feeling he has a “partner, not an adversary” in new administration. A reflection on philanthropy and its relationship with both past and current administration.

Charities Reap Benefits of Contests on the Internet
The New York Times: The opportunities for nonprofit groups to win money through contests are proliferating.

Target, Facebook Team Up and Let 10 Charities Compete for $$$
Star Tribune: Target Foundation asks facebook members to vote on distribution of $3 million among ten different charities.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

How is the economy affecting our region’s arts and cultural life?

Ginnie Lupi related: The ARTS has received several phone calls from journalists wanting to know how artists and arts/cultural organizations in our region are faring under current economic conditions. Yesterday’s New York Times ran an article on this issue, interviewing artists of all disciplines; some were upbeat, but most were despairing.

Instead of just passing on the anecdotal information we’re hearing about the economy’s affect on the region’s arts and cultural life, we’d like to hear from you directly. Read about comments left or leave your own feedback here.

Friday, May 15, 2009


The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes is proud to recognize this year's recipients of The ARTS' Annual ARTS Partnership Awards, which recognize individuals, artists, volunteers, schools, organizations and businesses that significantly contribute to the region's arts and cultural life. This year's recipients are:
  • William Locke, Superintendent, Arkport Central School District, for creating stellar arts programming for the schools in his district and for being an invincible advocate for the arts in the Arkport/Hornell region in Steuben County. Locke is an actor and vocalist who has performed in many plays and musical events. He was instrumental in the creation of the Hornell Rotary Club Summer Musical Program and serves as an adjudicator for the Rochester Broadway Theatre League.

  • Lynne Rusinko, Arts Advocate, Elmira, for her tireless commitment, outstanding contribution and dedication to artists and organizations in her community. Ms. Rusinko's enthusiasm, creativity, passion and skills have helped the arts thrive throughout the region. She has volunteered countless hours to the Elmira Open Studio Tour, Steele Memorial Library's Poetry Festival, Community Arts of Elmira, Festival of Women in the Arts, and the Elmira Street Painting Festival.
The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes will present this year's awards at its Annual Meeting on Thursday, May 21, at 5:30 pm at the International Motor Racing Research Center, 610 South Decatur Street, Watkins Glen, NY. Tickets are $20 per person and may be purchased by calling 607.962.5871 x223 - RSVP by May 15. The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes is the leading arts services and development agency in Chemung, Schuyler and Steuben counties.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Improving Prescription Access Webinar

Join Us for a Free Informational Webinar Event Hosted by New York State Association for Rural Health Improving Prescription Access for the nearly 2.6 Million Uninsured New Yorkers
Learn about the Together Rx Access® Program

The New York State Association for Rural Health invites you to participate in an informative webinar about ways in which you can help uninsured New York residents gain better access to prescription medicines. Collene Alexander, President of the New York State Association for Rural Health, invites Amy Niles, Chair Medical Relations/Advocacy of To6gether Rx Access, to discuss the impact of being uninsured and how Together Rx Access, a free prescription savings program, can help eligible uninsured residents gain immediate and meaningful savings on hundreds of prescription medicines right at their neighborhood pharmacy. The Together Rx Access Card is free to get and free to use.

More than 1.9 million people are cardholders. Those who have used their card have collectively saved over $84 million! Learn more.

By participating, you will learn:
  • Facts about the uninsured population in New York.
  • Why rural residents are less likely to have prescription drug coverage.
  • How Together Rx Access can help residents better access the prescription medicines they need to stay healthy and to treat disease.
  • Ways to get involved to help spread the word about Together Rx Access.
Who Should Participate: Healthcare professionals, state and local advocacy organizations, hospitals, clinics, community groups, state and local leaders, academia focused on health education
Date & Time: May 27, 2009 from 10:30-11:30 a.m., Eastern Time

Visit to register for this free event. When you register, you’ll be given the toll-free number for the call, as well as the website address to log into prior to the call.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Surviving Tough Economic Times Program

Support programs and services available to help you survive these troubled times.
June 10, 2009 8:00-10:30a.m.
Presented by:
Tompkins JSEC

Are you interested in energy and cost savings for small and medium sized businesses? How can businesses take advantage of a variety of educational, technical, and financial assistance energy programs?

Are training funds one of the items recently cut from your budget, leaving you unable to upgrade the skills of your current workers or bring in new employees that lack fundamental skills your business requires?

Is your business contemplating layoffs as a method to deal with the harsh economic environment we find ourselves in these days?

Are your employees struggling to get by, not knowing what supports are available to them or whether or not they might even qualify for assistance?

Your Tompkins JSEC has assembled a program to address these issues!
Learn about cost saving energy initiatives from a representative of New York State Energy Research Development Authority

Become informed about the training funds that are currently available and about the On-The-Job (OJT) funds that you can use to subsidize your training needs.

Join us to learn about the NYSDOL’s Shared Work Program, also known as the “Layoff Alternative”.

Find out about the new website,, which your employees can access to determine if they are likely to qualify for any of the many assistance programs currently available to New York State residents.

The course will be of interest to small business owners, human resource professionals, business leaders, consultants, managers, and supervisors.

Join us for this very informative and relevant program!!!
Country Club at Ithaca
189 Pleasant Grove Rd
Ithaca , NY

8:00 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. Registration & Breakfast
8:30 a.m. - 8:35 a.m. Opening Comments
8:35 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. Dennis Mastro, NYSERDA
9:00 a.m. – 9:15 a.m. Diane Bradac, Tompkins Workforce
9:15 a.m. - 9:50a.m. Wally Powers, Shared Work
9:50 a.m. - 10:20 a.m. Paula Guzzey, OTDA-NYS JOBS
10:20-a.m.-10:30a.m. Q &A

To Register:
Email or call Cathy Leonard 607 741-4518

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Human Services Coalition Forum Announced

The Human Services Coalition Forum, on Wednesday, May 13th, at Cornell Cooperative Extension, 615 Willow Avenue, Ithaca, from 8:45 to 10:15AM., will focus on two special topics: *

"Cornell Civic Leaders Fellowship Program," with Amy Somchanhmavong, Cornell Public Service Center, and current fellows Jack Jensen, Community Building Works! Inc.;
Nancy Bereano, Share the Care Model on LGBT Aging; and Margo Hittleman, Natural Leaders' Initiative*

"Human Services Coalition (HSC) Workshop Series: Looking Ahead," with Scott Heyman, HSC Consultant

Presenters will share information and invite discussion with others about the topics.

Forum members will also have the opportunity to make brief announcements and share items of interest to the local human service community. The Human Services Coalition, acting in its role as the umbrella agency for local health and human service providers and planners, sponsors this monthly forum to provide the opportunity for an open exchange of ideas and information. A variety of topics and speakers are featured and all who are interested in human services and their efficient delivery are urged to attend.

Call 607-272-9331 or visit for more info.