DMA Nonprofit Federation News Feeds
Challenge drives are almost always an integral part of capital and endowment campaigns. They are equally effective in annual fundraising, sponsorship, and any other effort to secure underwriting, all for a negligible increase in your overall fundraising costs.
The economic and political problems our nation confronts today are as deep-seated and complex as any we’ve faced in the past 100 years.
Yet this country has the capacity to revive its dreams and reinvent them for this century. We can renew America’s promise – if we can unlock and harness the collective energy, ingenuity, and idealism of our people.
That’s a tall order at this time of division and mistrust, when economic inequalities and political irresponsibility are straining the fabric of our society. Meanwhile, the needs and concerns of the broader public often go disregarded, fueling historically low levels of confidence in government – a loss of faith in the democratic system itself.
There’s no lack of public concern about the overall state of our union. Nor is there a shortage of good ideas for addressing our political and economic problems. But the piecemeal enactment of specific reforms won’t suffice to reinvigorate our democracy or put our economy on a more just and sustainable course. And big, systemic reforms are unlikely to gain traction in the current political climate.
At critical points throughout our history, the American people have confronted serious challenges, surmounted great obstacles, and achieved important goals. The prospects for positive change today would be enhanced significantly if the sense of shared purpose and collective responsibility that helped America meet daunting challenges in the past could be renewed and transformed to meet the demands of the 21st century.
What’s needed is a sustained, organized, and inclusive national conversation about the kind of country America wants to be; the goals we must reach if we are to fulfill that vision; and the shared values that could enable us to work together toward those goals. The outcomes of that conversation have to be communicated in a way that amplifies citizens’ voices and reframes the public debate about our future – and that helps to hold elected officials accountable to the broadly shared goals of the American people.
Together, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and a number of other foundations are taking the first steps toward launching such a project, which we’re calling – for now – the National Purpose Initiative (NPI).
This ambitious, multiyear effort will combine citizens’ dialogues and other forms of public consultation – engaging hundreds of thousands if not millions of Americans, online and face-to-face – with a parallel but integrated effort to engage a wide range of issue experts, policy analysts, scholars, advocates, and leaders from the nonprofit sector as well as from business, the media, and the cultural and faith communities.
The NPI will distill and disseminate insights from both the citizens’ and the experts’ dialogues. We hope that by sometime in 2016, the Initiative will be able to offer a broadly shared agenda of national priorities, a statement of shared principles to guide our nation’s politics and economic life, and an emerging vision for America’s future that is animating, unifying, and empowering.
With a more apparent consensus on the vision, priorities, and principles that should guide America’s political and economic systems, the system flaws will become more widely apparent. The fixes that farsighted advocates advance will become more politically viable; and ideologues will find it more difficult to derail progress.
Our history demonstrates that Americans can take on tough challenges and surmount them. If we unite around our common purposes; marshal the ingenuity and productivity of the American people; and renew this nation’s core commitment to fairness and opportunity, there is every reason to believe that we can restore the vitality and resilience of our democracy. Our character as a society and our success as a nation depend on it.
The national conversation I have described will require financial, intellectual, and moral support from many organizations and individuals. I hope some of you will be moved to participate in this unique process, and to help shape its outcomes.
Stephen Heintz is president of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund in New York City.
United Way of Greater Cincinnati’s (UWGC) 2013 campaign exceeded the 2012 campaign, with the most new dollars since 2007. The 2013 campaign raised more than $61.7 million, some $650,000 more than last year, an increase 1 percent. UWGC reported it was the most new dollars since 2007 and the second-highest new dollar total in 10 years.
“We envisioned and committed to achieve a bold stretch goal for this year as the first step to reach United Way’s bold vision of $75 million by 2020,” said campaign co-chairman Michael D. Connelly, president and CEO of Catholic Health Partners.
Strategies to reach this year’s goal included the availability of a Catholic Health Partners grant to match new and increased donations and a Tocqueville Challenge Match made possible by The Carol Ann and Ralph V. Haile, Jr./U.S. Bank Foundation. It matched all new and increased gifts of $10,000 or more with the incremental increase being matched.
Cincinnati’s Tocqueville Society and Women’s Leadership Council, which include donors of $10,000 or more, included 103 and 31 new members, respectively. United Way Emerging Leaders, donors 40 and young who give $1,000 or more, has 303 new members, and the new Hispanic Leadership Society, launched last year has 60 members. The Herbert R. Brown Society, which recognizes African American leaders who contribute $1,000 or more annually, gained 56 new members. More than 73 companies are making new corporate gifts and there are 25 new employee campaigns.
Greater Cincinnati reported the eighth-highest total in private support for 2012 among more than 400 affiliates reporting at last $1 million, according to United Way Worldwide. UWGC reported private support of $63.88 million last year, down about 3 percent from the 2011 total of $65.9 million.
The totals reported to Alexandria, Va., headquarters include more than just campaign figures and could include major gifts and other individual or corporate gifts. The total announced by Cincinnati was strictly for its local fundraising campaign, which ran from Aug. 28 to Oct. 30.