News & Views

A blog for those interested in what affects, motivates and drives the New York City Nonprofit Sector — written by CRE’s crackerjack consulting team. We hope you use this space to share your thoughts, ask questions and engage in conversations about our city, social justice and the nonprofit sector.

What Do Invisible Nonprofits Mean For Community Leadership?

By Valyrie Laedlein, CRE Co-Director - Those of you accustomed to visiting this website know that CRE exists to support nonprofit organizations in becoming stronger and more effective in their work to fight poverty and advance social justice. So it came as a bit of a shocker to hear the director of a foundation who is a significant supporter of social services and nonprofit capacity building say in a meeting last week that nonprofit organizations are becoming increasingly “invisible.”  Read more >>

Deadline Day

By Maria Mottola, Executive Director, New York Foundation - About 16 years ago I sat in the back of an auditorium listening to a panel of foundation executives give grantseekers advice about submitting proposals. They listed a litany of things that one should avoid. They seemed sincerely overwrought about binders and attachments and they especially dreaded single-spaced, 10 point sans sarif fonts. As a newly hired program officer, I promised myself I would never sound that cantankerous.   Read more >>

Free Services for CBOs During Hard Times

By Linda Levine, Member of Gray Matters - Has there ever been a time of greater need for NYC’s underserved urban communities? If you direct or work in a CBO, you know the struggle to provide a multiplicity of crucial services at a time when funds are scarce! Many communities suffer from lack of decent housing, medical and legal services, educational opportunities, as well as the impact of environmental injustice, limited access to the arts and the many other benefits enjoyed by citizens in more prosperous communities. Typically understaffed for the services they seek to provide, CBO's are keenly aware of how much more they might do with some professional assistance.  Read more >>

That Happy Music Again

By Maria Mottola, Executive Director of the New York Foundation - They played that happy music again on National Public Radio this morning. When Marketplace reports on the stock market performance, it plays either "We're in the Money" if the market went up or "stormy weather" if the market went down. Sometimes it plays "Don't mean a thing if it ain’t got that swing" which reminds us that no one really knows what’s going on with the market’s performance.  Read more >>

Should Hard Times Lead to Strategic Planning Shutdowns?

by Louisa Hackett - Times are tough for social service organizations.  For many, demand for services is increasing while resources to meet client needs are shrinking.  What is an organization to do?  After all, when fundraising pressures intensify, isn’t it the worst possible time to plan?  And what self-respecting organization can take the time when there is so much money to raise, when there are salaries and rent to pay, and when there is so much need to address?  Yet, focused strategic planning can often quickly answer some of the hard internal and external questions an organization faces during challenging economic periods.   Read more >>

Rapid Response to Support the Sector

 by Holly Delany Cole - A recent report by Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Ph.D. and Cameron Smith, funded by the Philanthropic Collaborative, found that Foundations responded in “a targeted and timely manner”, with grants appropriately directed to recession relief to the hardest-hit parts of the country.    Read more >>

Are Too Many Nonprofits Starting Up in Hard Times?

By Louisa Hackett - Every year CRE gets dozens of calls from people who want to start a non-profit.  And, every year we hear other people say, there are too many nonprofits already, why do we need another one starting-up? Isn’t there an organization that does that already? Why support a new, untested organization when so many exist already?  And, why establish a new organization now when the economy is so bad and so many existing nonprofits are having a hard time making it.   Read more >>

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