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Nonprofit news roundup for June 2, 2008

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U.S. official alleges ‘criminal neglect’ in Myanmar

U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates has said the Myanmar government is guilty of “criminal neglect” for its refusal to allow large-scale international aid into the county in the aftermath of May’s devastating cyclone, The New York Times reported June 2.  Despite his opinion, Gates said defense ministers at a recent meeting in Singapore all opposed any efforts to overrule Myanmar’s independence.

Banks drop student loans for some colleges

Students at community colleges and for-profit universities are feeling the pinch as some of the country’s largest banks have begun paring their student-loan activities, The New York Times reported June 2.  Lenders like CitiBank, JPMorgan Chase and Suntrust have begun dropping the schools, as well as other “less selective” four-year colleges, a move that could affect the nation’s neediest students.

Mosquito nets a trendy cause in U.S.

Collecting money for $10 mosquito nets to prevent malaria in developing counties has become trendy in the U.S., particularly among teens, The New York Times reported June 2. Groups including the Methodist and Lutheran churches, the National Basketball Association and American Idol have launched efforts to raise money for the nets, which have caught on in part because of their clear purpose and a low price point.

Canadian foundation called ‘sham’

The Canada Revenue Agency has called the Toronto-based Banyan Tree Foundation a “sham,” alleging that among other things, the funder made loans to donors so they could increase their contributions to the charitable foundation, CBC News reported June 2.  The “complicated structure” of the tax-avoidance deals orchestrated by Banyan left donors owing a total of $100 million to the Canadian government.

Nonprofit restaurant to open in Charlotte

The King’s Kitchen, a nonprofit restaurant schedule to open this winter in uptown Charlotte, N.C., will aim to hire, train and minister to troubled youth, people coming out of rehabilitation programs and the unemployed, The Charlotte Observer reported June 2.  Started by Jim Noble, a minister and chef who already has two trendy restaurants to his name, the latest effort is backed by several local bigwigs, including Carolina Panthers athletes and coach John Fox, and fast-food franchisees Cammie and Dee-Dee Harris.

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