A bi-weekly update from the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network.                                        


The Light of Dawnn Awards

Honoring Dawnn Jaffier & celebrating compassion and commitment by Boston nonprofit workers


On August 23, 2014, Boston lost one of its brightest rising stars. An innocent victim of gun violence, 26 year old Dawnn Ashley Jaffier was tragically killed on her way to a neighborhood celebration.


To honor Dawnn, and all victims of senseless acts of violence, the Highland Street Foundation, community leaders and Dawnn's colleagues, peers and family have created the Light of Dawnn Awards. These awards will celebrate individuals working in Boston's nonprofit sector who demonstrate the spirit that is Dawnn's legacy - a compassion and unwavering commitment to serve those in need. You can learn more about Dawnn's remarkable impact here.


Please take this opportunity to nominate a nonprofit professional in Boston who works on the front lines and demonstrates what it means to connect, build relationships, empower and expand opportunities for others. A selection committee made up of Dawnn's colleagues, peers and family will make the annual selection of 2-5 individuals to receive a Light of Dawnn Award. Those selected will be recognized at a public event and receive a monetary award for their outstanding efforts.


All nominations are due by December 31. Click here to submit a nomination.


Giving for One vs. Giving for Many

A new study indicates our brains are hardwired to help one person in need, but not millions.


In a University of Oregon study designed to gauge responses to different appeals addressing world hunger, participants were exposed to two different approaches: one focused entirely on a single starving girl, the other combining her story with global hunger statistics. Volunteers who were only told about the starving girl were willing to give approximately twice as much to help than those who also received additional information about world hunger. Research indicates that these differing responses stem from two conflicting feelings: compassion for the child and hopelessness in the face of an overwhelming problem.


"It's really about the sense of efficacy," says University of Oregon's Paul Slovic. "If our brain... creates an illusion of non-efficacy, people could be demotivated by thinking, 'Well, this is such a big problem. Is my donation going to be effective in any way?'"


NPR sums up the findings as: people decline to do what they can do because they feel bad about what they can't do. That theory might explain why there hasn't been an outpouring of donations from Americans to the Ebola epidemic. It could also help us understand giving trends to some of our more pressing domestic issues.


You can listen to the full story on NPR.


Curious about what other nonprofit executives and board members are doing in their roles? 

Time is running out to take Third Sector New England's leadership survey. Take the survey and share your insight to help compile the most comprehensive regional collection of data related to the needs and challenges facing the sector. Participants who complete the survey will be able to access comprehensive survey data from hundreds of nonprofits across New England. 

The past decade has been a tumultuous time for nonprofits. As our region recovers from the recession, nonprofit leaders and organizations will be faced with a new set of challenges that will require different types of support from funders and capacity builders. 

The survey is designed for executive directors and board members to help investigate their current challenges, discover where they are headed, and document what organizations need to move forward. The Leadership New England survey has already captured information from over 800 leaders. Your participation and the information you share are critical to helping the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors better understand leadership and organizational challenges and support needs. 


The survey closes on November 26. Take the survey today. 


City Awake: Boston's Social Impact Festival

A 10 day social impact festival is coming to Boston! From December 4- 13, City Awake will bring together more than 100 partner organizations to connect and celebrate Boston's dynamic social impact community. Featuring over 50 planned events including panels, presentations, and hands-on workshops, City Awake aims to showcase and strengthen the diverse and impactful work being done by Boston's social sector.


Festival events will take place all around greater Boston, and any interested party is eligible to host their own event. Click here to learn more about City Awake or host an event.

FREE MNN Exclusive Webinar: 
Online Tools to Help Nonprofits Learn, Listen, & Engage

On Wednesday, November 19, join MNN and Firespring for a webinar featuring:

* Dozens of no-cost or low-cost online tools to manage projects, organize events, accept donations and monitor social media.
* Top 10 tools for nonprofits- you'll then evaluate which are compatible for your nonprofit.
* How to educate your constituents and monitor trends and conversations.
* Ways to engage with your audience in less than 15 minutes a day. 
Recapping the 2014 midterm elections in MA
In case you weren't glued to the poll coverage, here's a recap of last week's local election results. You can also read a fantastic breakdown of the 2014 Governor's race from WBUR.
Nonprofit 411: 
Communication Between the Business Office & Board

By Jeanne Pagnozzi, BlumShapiro


You hold some of the most sensitive and important information regarding the operation of your non-profit. Budgets, cash flows, obligations, covenants, financials, audit, internal controls, legal and regulatory matters....all of these can have a tremendous impact on how the individuals running the program activities accomplish their goals. Matters surrounding finance can provide stepping stones or significantly hinder the progress of the organization's mission.

Have you thought about what you should be providing to the Board and in what format? Read more...

Director of Development, Institute for Nonprofit Management and Leadership

Philanthropy Associate, Foundation for MetroWest

Managing Director of Finance, National Center on Time & Learning 

Deputy Director, LivableStreets Alliance 

Executive Director, Maine Initiatives

Development and Communications Assistant, Crossroads for Kids

Manager of Education and Partnerships, Massachusetts Council of Human Service Providers

Marketing Specialist, For Kids Only Afterschool

Development Manager, Let's Get Ready - New England

Program Associate, Summer Search National

Development Director, Notre Dame Cristo Rey High School

Program Officer, Massachusetts Service Alliance

Grant Writer, Coalition for a Better Acre 

Senior Associate, Center for Social Innovation
Director of Major Gift, Horizons for Homeless Children

Executive Director, Public Conversations Director


Grant & Award Opportunities

Boston Foundation, Due November 25
The Mockingbird Foundation, rolling application, next cycle opens January 1
Sumner Redstone Foundation, rolling application
The Vision Fund
, rolling application
Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, rolling application 

Trainings & Events 
*Discounts for MNN members

Philanthropy Day on Cape Cod, Hyannis, November 12

Boston University INML Seminar for Board Leaders, Boston, November 13, 20, December 4

*Outcomes Management: An Introduction, Metrowest, November 18

Board Duties and Management Responsibilities, Boston, November 19

Online Tools to Help Nonprofits Learn, Listen & Engage, Webinar, Nov. 19

The Fix: Film and Panel Discussion , November 19

Logic Models, Worcester, November 20

Outcomes Management: An Introduction, Northampton, November 20

Improved Nonprofit Accounting Through Collaboration, Boston, Nov. 21

 *The Road to a Successful Grant, Boston, December 3

Executive/Senior Management Two-day Leadership Retreat, Lenox, December 4 & 5

Engaging Constituents for Community Impact, Lawrence, December 5

NDC Home Ownership Finance Course, Framingham, December 8-11 

*Outcomes Management: An Introduction, Boston, December 9

*Coping with Challenging People with Style and Grace, Holyoke, December 10

Engaging Design: A Ground-Up Approach to Building Community, Boston, December 16


Nonprofit leaders included in list of top 100 women-led businesses in Massachusetts. The list was compiled by Boston Globe Magazine and The Commonwealth Institute.  View the full list.


Hire a student! The signature component of Cristo Rey Boston High School is the Corporate Work Study Program, which places students in local businesses to help give them an extraordinary experience AND builds capacity at your organization. If you are a nonprofit or for profit and are interested in hosting a student in your office, you can learn more here.


39 Ideas for driving traffic to your website from Forbes.


Check out MNN's online Professional Directory for companies throughout MA. 

New & Returning Affiliates
*Discounts for MNN members

Designs, builds and operates solar photovoltaic systems, offering lower electricity costs and long-term price stability for nonprofits with no upfront cost to the nonprofit. Offering a no cost, no obligation solar energy review and proposal for your property. 

Provides governance, business, and resource development consulting services to nonprofit organizations resulting in shared vision and mission, strengthened operations, and increased effectiveness.

A full life-cycle human resources consulting firm providing support for nonprofits of all sizes. Provides talent acquisition for all levels and specializes in bridging the gap between strategy and implementation.
*10% off consulting services

Offers customized investment portfolios and financial strategies, backed by 25 years of industry experience.

Draws on the experience and knowledge of seasoned professionals to manage and support philanthropic individuals and nonprofit institutions.

One of the nation's top 10 certified public accounting and consulting firms, providing clients with specialized industry insight in its tax and advisory capabilities. 

Works with nonprofits and foundations to achieve strategic goals, measure results and create stronger, more resilient organizations, utilizing 30 years of experience in nonprofit executive management, leadership, and consulting.

A full-service commercial bank able to meet all financial needs, serving the community for almost 2 centuries.

Building brands for world-changers and do-gooders through great design, content, and strategy.

Offers a consolidated approach to insurance planning, wealth management, and business succession with special emphasis on minimizing effects of taxes wherever possible.

Offers low-cost internet service, computer equipment and free digital literacy training to families with at least one child eligible to participate in the National School Lunch Program.

Offers consulting services to nonprofits, designs and leads collaborative strategic planning processes, and specializes in meetings and retreats for large groups, as well as board development workshops. 

Provides legal services that encompass the full lifecycle of non-profit organizations, from obtaining 501(c)(3) status to advising on governance, regulatory compliance, and dissolution.

New & Returning Nonprofit Members
African Children Fund Inc
MNN's work is made possible by The Barr Foundation, The Boston Foundation & State Street Foundation.
If you'd like to share a story or have a job, grant or other information that is important to Massachusetts nonprofits, contact llynch@massnonprofitnet.org .