Charity roundup – Red Cross woes – Microsoft offers deal

In the news this week:

* Local officials in at least six disasters over the past decade have had to push the American Red Cross to give victims the donations the public intended for them, The Washington Post reported Nov. 19.

* To settle more than 100 class-action antitrust suits claimi8ng it overcharged consumers, Microsoft has proposed that it donate cash, training and support worth at least $550 million to help put computing services into more than 12,500 schools in poor neighborhoods throughout the U.S., The New York Times reported Nov. 21. In response, Red Hat in Durham, N.C., offered to provide its Linux open-source operating system – an underdog challenger to Microsoft – to every school district for free, The News and Observer in Raleigh, N.C., reported Nov. 21.

* Charitable giving by foundations, corporations and individuals grew 21 percent to a record-high $765 million between 1998 and 1999, while foundation assets grew 16 percent to nearly $10.6 billion, according to a report by the Minnesota Council on Foundations.

* Three managers at the endowment at Harvard University were paid more than $10 million in the fiscal year ended June 30, despite an investment loss of 2.7 percent, The Boston Globe reported Nov. 17.

* The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation is creating a $50 million fund for museums, theaters, dance companies and other New York cultural institutions and public parks hurt in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terror attacks, The New York Times reported Nov. 21.

* More than 70 management consultants from half a dozen firms spent five weeks of donated time to forecast the economic impact — $83 billion in losses – of the Sept. 11 terror attacks, The New York Times reported Nov. 21.

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