Nonprofit news roundup for Oct. 7, 2008

Nonprofit uncertainty higher than post-9/11

Nonprofits are less confident about their ability to raise funds than they were when the U.S. was climbing out of an economic recession in December 2001, according to a survey by the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, USA Today reported Oct. 7 (see uncertainty story). The survey, conducted before the Wall Street crisis, does not reflect the growing apprehension resulting from a tumbling stock market. The number of nonprofit donors fell a median 3.8 percent in the first half of 2008 compared to a year earlier.

Baby Boomers seen holding off on retirement

One in five Baby Boomers stopped investing in their retirement plans last year, and one in three has considered putting off retirement, according to a survey by AARP, The Wall Street Journal reported Oct. 7 (see retirement story). The results of the survey indicate that the largest demographic group in the U.S. is having trouble making ends meet due to the tanking economy.

New generation of philanthropists gets creative

The era of mailing off big checks may be phasing out, as younger philanthropists look for creative ways to get actively involved and engage their peers in charitable causes, USA Today reported Oct. 7 (see young story). With the proliferation of the Internet, text messaging and social-networking sites, today’s philanthropists are better able to track their charitable dollars and stay informed about causes they believe in.

Stanford gets $75M for stem-cell research

Lorry Lokey, founder of Business Wire press-release service, is donating $75 million to the School of Medicine at Stanford University to help build what may be the largest center for stem-cell research in the U.S., The San Francisco Chronicle reported Oct. 6 (see research story). The Chronicle of Philanthropy listed Lokey, with $93.5 million in gifts last year, as the 23rd most generous giver in the country.

In Brief:

* Fall fundraising campaigns are off to a rocky start as the plunging stock market prompts donors to tighten their belts, The Calgary Herald reported Oct. 7.

* At many nonprofit organizations that rely on end-of-year giving, fundraisers are wringing their hands as the Wall Street crisis puts a damper on individual, corporate and government funding, The New York Times reported Oct. 6.

* Faced with dismal donations, charitable organizations are turning to health-related relays and walks to create a sense of community and responsibility among potential donors, USA Today reported Oct. 7.

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