The Commons – Our Blog
News, Tips, & Insights from Staff & Guests
Welcome to The Commons, 501 Commons' new blog, where we'll be sharing:
- How-tos, tips, and tricks from nonprofit tech, finance, HR, and other areas
- News and updates about upcoming events, programs, and services
- Thought-provoking pieces around topics, such as skills-based volunteerism, nonprofit management, and more
- Stories from clients about the impact of 501 Commons' programs and services
Plus, we invite your comments! Add your thoughts to these posts, so our blog truly becomes "The Commons."
In any nonprofit organization, no relationship is more crucial than the one between the executive director/CEO and the board chairperson. However, it takes time and commitment to create a relationship that works. An investment in an expert facilitator who can help set the groundwork for an effective working relationship will pay dividends for everyone at the organization. Read what Sherry Jennings (Sound Governance) has to say about this topic.
Meetings provide opportunities to exchange ideas, learn about organizational successes and challenges and hatch plans for organizational improvements or program growth. But how can you ensure that a meeting is worth the time and cost and that your meeting goals are met? We provide some helpful resources for making the most out of your meetings of the minds.
Did you know 501 Commons served 15 counties across the state of Washington in 2014? Or that the Executive Service Corps and VIP Manager Corps donated $1.3 million worth of services to nonprofits? We'd like to thank the funders and donors who made accomplishments like these possible. Find out more about the impact our organization made in the nonprofit sector in 2014.
If you didn't participate in #GivingTuesday or want to be prepared to make a stronger push for donations during this holiday-themed crowdfunding campaign next year, we have some helpful tools for you, including a few resources from a recent Giving Tuesday training session hosted by 501 Commons and SeaTech4Good. The presenters came from The Seattle Foundation and Legal Voice.
At our annual Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon on Nov. 5 at the Pacific Tower's Panoramic Center, nearly 120 attendees listened to inspiring testimonies from 501 Commons volunteers and heartfelt stories of positive change from nonprofit clients at an event meant to celebrate the impact of our Executive Service Corps volunteers.
Of the 87,142 foundations operating in the United States, 1,329 are in Washington State, and they awarded more than $3.9 billion to nonprofits in 2013. While individual gifts are an important avenue of generating revenue, the importance of grants and applying for grants cannot be ignored. We provide helpful grant writing resources and referrals that can help you raise the funds you need to support your mission.
501 Commons recently piloted a "short and sweet" version of VIP Manager Corps where six King County nonprofits were matched with skilled volunteers who provided each organization a boost in their volunteer program capacity. The positive energy doesn’t stop there! Next summer, we will launch a cohort of 12 new King County nonprofits. Read more to find out how you can apply.
La Sala was founded by a small team of dedicated people whose passion brought the mission to life. After completing the Springboard cohort program earlier this year, the organization - whose mission is to empower the local Latino/Latina arts community - now has both the internal structures in place to succeed and an exciting new funding opportunity.
Producing a major fundraising event can be a costly and time-consuming endeavor. To ensure success, remember to think of events as the culmination of building relationships with donors instead of just being a place where you solicit gifts. We've compiled a list of helpful resources to help guide you through the process of planning the best fundraising events.
RFPs are a common method for nonprofits to gather bidders for an important project. However, in our experience, we believe RFPs are not always the best way to select that crucial vendor your organization needs. We recommend nonprofits instead hire a consultant based on an in-depth discussion rather than dryly reviewing a document.