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The Commons – Our Blog

News, Tips, and Insights from 501 Commons

Gratitude and Connection

February 21, 2020 501 Commons News
The 501 Commons staff and board members are inspired every day by the creativity and commitment we see in the people and organizations we serve.

Upcoming Grant Opportunities for Nonprofits

March 18, 2016
We have for you three upcoming grant opportunities for nonprofits, offered by The Sustainable Communities Funders group, Social Justice Fund Northwest, and 4Culture. The deadlines for these grants are no more than a month or two out. If none of these specific funding opportunities are right for your organization, bookmark their websites so you can check out future grants that could be.

Proposed Changes to FLSA Laws Close to Implementation

March 17, 2016
In mid-March 2016, the Department of Labor sent to the Office of Management and Budget its final changes to the federal Fair Labor Standards Act laws, which determines which workers are eligible to receive overtime pay. The proposed changes would especially impact nonprofits where managers are also engaged in delivering direct services or where employees work longer hours during part of the year like summer camps.

Nancy Long Discusses Capacity Building and Other Issues for Philanthropy Northwest's March 2016 Virtual Roundtable

March 7, 2016
Every month Philanthropy Northwest publishes a series of “virtual roundtable” interviews with a group of nonprofit leaders to discuss in detail a common issue affecting the sector. For their March 2016 roundtable, Nancy Long discusses capacity building funding, the importance of modern technology, what funders need to understand about making the greatest impact, driving the brightest talent to the sector, and other current issues 501 Commons tackles every day.

Plymouth Housing Group: HR Trainings for Managers

March 2, 2016
Plymouth Housing Group’s mission of securing permanent and supportive homes for homeless adults, combined with their wide array of wrap-around services, means they rely heavily on their managers' wisdom and compassion. PHG approached us to seek ways they can better support their managers, so we designed for them a series of 12 HR manager trainings to help bring their staff leaders and employees closer together.

How Boards Can Evaluate ED/CEO Performance

February 23, 2016
It's important for the board to conduct an annual evaluation of the ED/CEO, but what's also important is how that review is done. The board should focus on evaluating the organization's performance and using surveys that don't judge the executive's personal characteristics. Read more about what resources are available to boards who wish to find a comprehensive and effective way to evaluate the executive.

Salesforce Sandboxes: What They Are and How to Use Them

February 18, 2016
Want to experiment with new ideas in Salesforce but don't want to ruin your existing database? "Sandboxes" are test spaces where you can try out new things like objects, fields, workflow processes, and page layouts without making a single change to your current configuration. Not all sandboxes are the same, to it's important to learn the differences before setting up a new one.

Helpful Resources: Thanking Donors

February 5, 2016
For many nonprofits, donors are the backbone of their fundraising efforts. Without the generosity of individual gifts, lots of organizations would not be able to fully advance their missions. Just in case your organization needs a refresher on how to best thank its donors, we provide you a few helpful resources that will guide you toward becoming even better stewards of your supporters.

A Look Back at 2015

February 2, 2016
2015 ushered in a tremendous amount of growth for 501 Commons. We raised more money than ever to support free and affordable services to nonprofits across our state. Through our contracted services, action-based cohort programs, consulting projects, and free resources on our Nonprofit Resource Directory, more people than ever are being touched by our organization. We'd like to thank the volunteers in the Executive Service Corps for making 2015 an impact year!

VIP Management Corps: Want to Grow Your Volunteer Program?

January 26, 2016
Apply by February 15 to join the 2016 VIP Management Corps (VMC) cohort program so that your organization can receive a temporary boost in staffing to help you more effectively recruit, engage and retain high-value volunteers. The program runs from June through October. At the end of the process, your nonprofit will receive the resources, training and support necessary to become stronger stewards of volunteers.

Youth Voice, Youth Choice Offers Seattle Youth the Opportunity to Make an Impact

January 25, 2016
Civic-minded youth ages 11 to 25 have the opportunity to make an impact in their communities through "Youth Voice, Youth Choice," a new City of Seattle initiative that allows youth to decide how to spend $700,000 of the City’s budget that is allocated toward community-building grant opportunities. The first of seven gatherings is Jan. 28 at Meridian Center of Health at 10521 Meridian Ave. N.