Nonprofit news roundup for Aug. 14, 2008

Muslim charities agree to audit

In response to concerns that some nonprofits may be financing terrorism, seven Muslim charities in the U.S. agreed to submit to an auditing process designed by the Better Business Bureau to improve transparency, The Wall Street Journal reported Aug. 13 (see Muslim story) [subscription only]. The move is intended to ward off government scrutiny and restore public confidence after the Sept. 11 attacks.

California community colleges beef up philanthropy efforts

As a result of a $70-million grant from the Bernard Osher Foundation to the Foundation for California Community Colleges, two-year colleges throughout California’s Bay Area are stepping up philanthropy efforts with the goal of paying for more scholarships and programs, The San Francisco Business Times reported Aug. 8 (see college story). Part of the grant was a $25-million challenge grant made available for three years, with $1 given for every $2 raised by a California community college.

Aid workers killed in Afghanistan

Three women and their Afghan driver, all of whom worked for the International Rescue Committee in New York, were killed when their vehicle was ambushed south of Kabul, Afghanistan, the Associated Press reported Aug. 13 (see ambush story). The number of aid workers killed in militant attacks in Afghanistan has reached 23 in 2008, compared with 15 in all of 2007, a report from security group ANSO says.

Charity flight crashes, killing 3

Nonprofit Angel Flight New England suffered the first fatality in its 12-year history when a small plane taking a cancer patient to Boston for treatment crashed, killing the patient, his wife and the pilot, The Boston Globe reported Aug. 12. The nonprofit is a network of volunteer pilots that transports patients to receive medical care.

In brief:

* Mayo Clinic’s latest fundraising effort raised more than $1 billion, or about 80 percent of its five-year $1.25-billion goal, which it aims to reach by Dec. 31, 2009, The St. Paul Business Journal reported Aug. 13.

* Oxfam, one of Great Britain’s largest charities, is trying to find ways to cut 10 to 15 percent of its costs by conducting an organization-wide review that could lead to job cuts, The Guardian reported Aug. 13.

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