November updates from blue avocado: Practical, Provocative Food for Thought for Nonprofits

by SMAC

Letter from the Editor

As the holidays approach in an election year, we’re bringing themes of community, understanding, and collaboration to the forefront.

Read about the issue


Five Things to Learn from Gen Z Social Innovators Tackling Social Isolation

Gen-Z-540x200by Eunice Lin Nichols

As she grieved the loss of her grandmother, Gaby wondered how the other residents at her grandmother’s senior home were doing and thought about the joy and connection musical concerts could bring to their lives. Last spring, she launched Virtual Companions to help youth and older adults bond over activities her grandmother enjoyed, including conversation, community service, and the arts.

To get the project off the ground, Gaby started with a simple test. She tried to coordinate a Zoom streaming of Stanford Medicine’s Stuck@Home Concert for a group of older adults, but quickly learned that their lack of access to technology made the task nearly impossible.

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Ask Rita: Coping with the Workplace Challenges of the Pandemic—Don’t Forget Empathy, Compassion, and Flexibility

Empathy-540x200by Mike Bishop

Dear Rita:

Our employee now needs more time off to take care of her children and to support them during periods of virtual learning. Her position is not one that would easily permit her to do her job remotely. While we do have an unpaid personal leave policy, we are reluctant to provide more leave since the work she does requires sustained consistency and attention to detail, which, as I mentioned, seems to be slipping anyway. Since we know of no other leaves of absence available to her, we may, regrettably, need to separate.

Any thoughts on how we can help this employee care for her family in this difficult time, yet not harm our nonprofit in doing so?

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Strategic Planning 101: Strengthen a Nonprofit’s Board–Executive Director Relationship

ED-chair-540x200by Jonathan Poisner

When I talk to nonprofit leaders about strategic planning, they often voice some of the obvious benefits of aligning teams around organizational identity (mission, vision) and organizational priorities (goals). In contrast, they rarely voice a benefit I think is undervalued: The opportunity strategic planning presents for a board and executive director to strengthen their relationship.

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Against the Current: Rudy Espinoza

Inclusive-Action-540x200interviewed by Robert Egger

If you could get the ear of president-elect Biden, what law or policy would you most urge him to enact, and how would it radically rock your world?

Cancel the rent.

The Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated the economic issues that communities of color have been facing for a very long time. Some of our clients are months behind in the rent, and property owners are struggling too. How can they pay their own mortgages when their tenants have no income?

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Call for Submissions

Contribute-540x200

In keeping with our mission to support our sector, we’re introducing six categories for which we will accept submissions. For three of the six categories, we’re giving contributors who work at nonprofits the opportunity to receive a donation.

• Nonprofit Boards ($200 + Publication)
• Financial Health ($500 + Publication)
• Innovative Leadership ($700 + Publication)
• Human Resources (Publication Only)
• Funding (Publication Only)
• Covid-19 (Publication Only)

Categories and their allotted donation may change with changes in the climate of the sector and new calls for submissions.

To contribute, please read our guidelines carefully under each category.

Submit

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