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Nonprofit news roundup May 1, 2009

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Ford Foundation investing $50 million into foreclosure venture

The Ford Foundation will invest $50 million into the National Community Stabilization Trust, a new consortium of community-based nonprofits that aims to help cities buy foreclosed homes from financial institutions and halt property-value declines, The Wall Street Journal reported May 1 (see Ford stabilization article). The new consortium plans to serve as a broker between cities trying to rehab neighborhoods and mortgage servicers looking to get rid of seized properties.

San Francisco mayor calls for nonprofit mergers

A survey commissioned by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom suggests struggling nonprofits should merge or close, and should look diversify their funding base, the San Francisco Examiner reported April 30. A city report also says the city lacks a clear vision and plan for the $500 million it spends each year on nonprofits that provide vital services to residents.

Dallas Symphony tour in Europe delayed because of recession

Citing the international recession, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s has postponed until 2012 at the earliest a European tour it had planned for next February and March, The Dallas Morning News reported April 30.

Nonprofit embezzler ordered to serve in prison, pay restitution

A Sacramento woman has been ordered to serve more than three years in prison and pay more than $250,000 in restitution for embezzling money from a local charity, The Sacramento Bee reported April 30. The former bookkeeper for Options in Supported Living issued checks from the business to herself, the group’s paperwork to hide the transactions, and used the company’s credit card for personal expenses,
the Bee said.

Ex-official convicted of embezzling from school district, charity

A former financial-services officer for the Long Beach Unified School District was convicted of embezzling nearly $100,000 from the district and its charity, the Long Beach Education Foundation, the Associated Press reported May 1.

Australia‘s wealthy urged to give more

Super-rich Australians should give more to charity, the CEO of UNICEF Australia said in an opinion column in ABC News (see Australia giving article). Data show 40 percent of Australia’s top five per cent of income earners give little or nothing to charitable causes, she said, and millionaires in Australia give less than two percent of their income, compared to 3.5 percent in the U.S. and 3.2 percent in Canada.

Gates Foundation funding internet access abroad

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will give $57 million to improve Internet access at public libraries in Poland, Romania, and Vietnam, Northwest Asian Weekly reported April 30.

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