Nonprofit news roundup May 15, 2009

Habitat getting $100 million from real-estate developer

Habitat for Humanity International is getting $100 million from an Atlanta developer who says his work helped him see the difficulty poor people have finding decent housing, the Associated Press reported April 14.

Red Cross in New York City area cutting one-fourth of staff

Citing the poor economy and a 25 percent drop in private donations, the American Red Cross in Greater New York plans to lay off one-fourth of its 186-person staff, The New York Times reported May 14 (see Red Cross layoffs story).

North Carolina county cuts funding to area nonprofits

Mecklenburg County in North Carolina is recommending a reduction of about 8.5 percent in funding for area nonprofits, asking some to consider merging operations while considering wiping out funding altogether for three others over the next two years, The Charlotte Observer reported May 14. The reductions come in response to a $78.9 million budget shortfall for the county, which is not recommending funding for any new applicants.

University endowments down in Michigan, Seattle

The value of the endowment at the University of Michigan fell $2 billion by the end of 2008, down nearly 27 percent The Ann Arbor News, reported May 14 (see Michigan endowment story), while the endowment at Seattle University has lost 30 percent of its value, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported May 14 (see Seattle endowment story).

British millionaire giving entire fortune to fight against cancer

Brian Burnie, a British millionaire who says he will give the rest of his life and fortune to charity and hopes to die penniless, is selling his historic luxury spa hotel and estate and will use the proceeds to help fight cancer, the Press Association reported May 14 (see British gift story).

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