Weekly News Recap: September 14, 2018


There is good in everything, if only we look for it. — Laura Ingalls Wilder

Need help with a design project?

  • GET YOUR MESSAGE ACROSS USING FRESH, BRIGHT MINDS (ACAD) ACAD is seeking participants for this year’s Public Design Program that pairs not-for-profit organizations with 4th year design students to gain valuable project work experience. Projects must be completed during the fall 2018 semester and can range from websites to posters to advertising, brochures, signage or more. ACAD's students have outstanding creative abilities and design skills and are eager to help make a difference with your organization. If you have a design project, you can can apply here.

Just fun

Lists of lists

  • AFP Top Ten Fundraising Tips (Week of September 5, 2018): Year-End Acknowledgements, Matching Gifts, Asking Amounts, Galas & More! (AFP eWire) This is what caught my attention this week... First, despite the linkbait title, this little reminder is gold when we are pressed for time. And when are we not? (Major Gifts in Ten Minutes a Day) Next, a rich trove of tools to make your ask amounts... the right amounts (Year End: Ideal Asking Amounts). Finally, too often, we (me included) forget that our board members are not just folks who join us around a table once a month; this is a great read (Do You Know Your Board Members?). A note on the ask amounts article, AFP's link is bad, use this one. 9/5/18


  • First piece of new Afghanistan war museum unveiled in Calgary (CBC) CALGARY STORY This is terrific. And an honour for Calgary's Military Museums. I am definitely going to visit. "The first piece of a new national museum about the war in Afghanistan was unveiled in Calgary this week. The new museum was recently announced to help tell the stories of the 40,000 Canadian soldiers who participated in Canada's longest armed conflict." 9/11/18

  • Calgary's theatre community comes together to confront challenges ahead (CBC) CALGARY STORY "A diverse mix of people working in Calgary's performing arts sector got together Sunday night to talk about how best to move forward in tough times. One of the biggest challenges is that Calgary's arts groups receive among the lowest municipal funding per capita in the country [...]." 9/10/18

  • Claresholm museum to launch UFA women in agriculture exhibit (CBC) CLARESHOLM STORY I triple-heart this "A bust of Louise McKinney will be part of a new exhibit honouring women in Alberta agriculture at the Claresholm & District Museum, the trailblazing head of the United Farmers of Alberta (UFA) told The Homestretch. McKinney, one of the Famous Five women who led to the suffrage movement in Canada, was elected to the Alberta legislature in 1917 representing Claresholm. Carol Kitchen, the CEO of the United Farmers of Alberta, says the exhibit will honour the contribution of women to the agriculture sector. It's set to open next year, thanks to a provincial tourism grant." 9/10/18

  • Edmonton's future rec centres at risk as city faces budget demands (CBC) EDMONTON STORY "Edmonton city council may face some tough decisions this fall as the next four-year budget comes up for debate. Several infrastructure projects need funding to move ahead in the 2019-2022 budget cycle, including the Lewis Farms Facility and Park, which has been in the works conceptually for several years." 9/10/18

  • She made the discovery, but a man got the Nobel. A half-century later, she’s won a $3 million prize. (Washington Post) Late. But it's a start. What a story. Amazing human. This woman discovered pulsars, one of the most important astronomical finds of the 20th century. Oh, and look for the rest of the story under large gifts below. "[Half] a century after her pioneering work, it was announced that [Jocelyn] Bell Burnell will receive a $3 million Breakthrough Prize, one of the most lucrative and prestigious awards in science. The special award in fundamental physics, given for her scientific achievements and 'inspiring leadership,' has only been granted three times before." 9/9/18

  • First of 3 'drinking birds' installed outside new Calgary Central Library (CBC) CALGARY STORY "The first part of city's latest — and one of its highest-profile — public art projects was installed [...] outside the nearly-completed new $245-million Calgary Central Library. It was the first day of a multi-day installation of TRIO — three 'drinking birds' created by Los Angeles-based artist and teacher Christian Moeller." 9/7/18

  • United Way kicks off annual fundraising campaign in Calgary (CTV News) CALGARY STORY "Thousands of people took to Stephen Avenue on Thursday morning for the first day of the United Way’s campaign to raise money and awareness about social issues in Calgary. The 78th Annual United Way campaign began with a march in the downtown core and aims to show everyone in the city how they can do some good to help those in need." 9/6/18

  • Global Compact Network Canada Recognizing Businesses for SDGs Impact at the 3rd Annual Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Leadership Awards (CSRwire) CANADIAN STORY CAWST was a winner in the Small Organizations Category. Congrats to Shauna Curry and the entire team at CAWST. ViTreo is proud to be working with CAWST. "'We are honoured to be seen as leaders amongst so many Canadian organizations working towards the Sustainable Development Goals. CAWST’s vision is a world in which people have the opportunity to succeed because their basic water and sanitation needs have been met. ~ Shauna Curry, CEO, CAWST" 9/6/18

  • Alberta non-profit's merger with Kamloops outreach group raises hopes for helping more in need (CBC) CANADIAN STORY "Alberta non-profit The Mustard Seed has taken the management reins at New Life Community Kamloops, an outreach group that has provided poverty relief services in Kamloops since 1980. There are high hopes that the organization, now known as the Mustard Seed New Life Community, will be able to draw on greater resources to help more people in need." 9/5/18

  • Wonder what it’s like to ride in a self-driving vehicle? Meet ELA, Calgary’s free autonomous shuttle service (The Star Calgary) CALGARY STORY "Nobody’s at the wheel of Calgary’s latest shuttle service. Electric Autonomous, or ELA for short, is a short and boxy self-driving shuttle capable of following a preprogrammed path at a speed of around 12 km/h. [It’ll] carry up to a dozen passengers at a time between TELUS Spark and the Calgary Zoo at a steady pace — for free — as part of an autonomous vehicle pilot project." 9/5/18

  • Construction Complete on GPRC National Bee Diagnostic Centre Laboratory (GPRC) GRANDE PRAIRIE STORY Congrats! Important project. "The NBDC expansion project was made possible by funds from the federal and provincial governments via the Post-secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund (PSIF). In May 2017, the provincial and federal governments awarded more than $21.5 million in funding to four Alberta colleges for reinvestment in research and innovation activities. The expansion was funded using a combined total of $6 million in funding from the provincial and federal governments as well as the College." For more on this important Centre. 9/5/18

  • Mentorship program 'just exploded my interest for science' (Edmonton Journal) EDMONTON STORY One of my favourite programs! "Ardrossan Junior Senior High School’s six science labs might seem a smidgen underwhelming as teenage physicist hopeful Hannah Bayne heads back to school this fall [...]. The Elk Island Public Schools student was one of 37 teens who landed a summer job on the University of Alberta campus through WISEST — Women in Scholarship, Engineering, Science and Technology — an organization which introduces high school students to potential careers in non-traditional fields for their gender. The program typically places girls and non-binary students in science and engineering labs, and boys in jobs related to nutrition, nursing and human ecology. The jobs are paid, thanks to the program’s donors." 9/5/18

  • Excite your inner nerd at Beakerhead! Sept. 19 - 23 (CBC) CALGARY STORY Beakerhead! We love Beakerhead! "The five day city wide spectacle takes place September 19 - 23 and brings together more than 150 arts and engineering collaborators from across the globe to build, compete and exhibit interactive works of art and entertainment all over the city." 9/5/18

First Peoples of Canada

  • U of Alberta researcher investigates resilience of Indigenous women and youth (CBC) EDMONTON STORY "The Indigenous Women's Resilience Project also looks at the resilience of Indigenous trans and two-spirit communities. In the research, Bear and her team organized a film festival, ribbon-skirt-making workshops and a memorial march for missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls." 9/8/18

  • U of S to become new home of Institute of Indigenous Peoples' Health (CBC) SASKATOON STORY Nice move. "The Institute of Indigenous Peoples' Health will make its new home in Saskatoon at the University of Saskatchewan. Formerly located in Sudbury, Ont., the institute will start operating in Saskatoon on Oct. 1. " 9/7/18

  • 6 Indigenous artists to create installations for Calgary's new central library (CBC) CALGARY STORY How awesome is this! "A life-sized buffalo sculpture made of words in Indigenous languages, and an enormous colourful wall mural are among the installations being created by six Indigenous artists for the new Calgary Central Library. The permanent installations are part of a $500,000 project devoted to bringing Indigenous art to the new building when it opens in November. The fund will also support an artist in residence and display space for temporary exhibits." 9/6/18

Life and career hacks

Uncommon knowledge

  • One Simple Reason Why Touching The Sun Is So Hard (Starts With a Bang) No, this is not an article on how to enlarge your thinking...it is actually about trying to touch the sun...literally. In August of this year, NASA launched a probe that will actually touch the sun. This has never been done before. It's pretty amazing. 8/21/18

Philanthropic personalities

  • Jack Ma and other billionaires who have made philanthropy their life's mission: Details here (Times Now News) "The number of billionaires has gone up significantly in the last decade. Forbes identified more than 2,200 billionaires from around 72 countries this year. More than 585 people on the list were Americans. Some of these billionaires use their wealth to change the world for the better." 9/10/18

  • Alibaba’s Jack Ma To Retire To Focus on Philanthropy (Deadline Hollywood) "Jack Ma, the former English teacher who built one of the world’s most influential e-commerce businesses, said he will step down as Alibaba’s executive chairman [...] to focus on philanthropy. Alibaba transformed how the Chinese people shop and make purchases, and made Ma the richest man in the world’s most populous country. His net worth is estimated at $40 billion." 9/7/18

  • Beyond the Ask: A Fundraiser's Rise to the Pinnacle of His Profession (Inside Philanthropy) Congrats Bob. You are on a very small list of fundraising 'royalty' and deservedly so. Thank you for being a hero and one of our most important mentors. "Reaching the top of the fundraising profession involves so much more than perfecting one’s solicitation skills. Just ask Bob Carter. Now chairman of Carter, his simply named consulting firm also known as Carter Global, this consummate fundraiser has climbed the ranks of the fundraising profession, raising money worldwide for more than a decade." 9/5/18

  • ALIBABA HOSTS SECOND XIN PHILANTHROPY CONFERENCE (Alizilla) "Held for the first time in 2016, the biennial Xin Philanthropy Conference aims to raise public awareness about community service, and the idea of giving back, in China. It was China’s first private philanthropy conference (others have been government-affiliated) and features global thought-leaders, change agents and Chinese pioneering philanthropists to exchange ideas, solutions and best practices on social responsibility." 9/5/18

  • Queen calls for global response to education crisis at Chinese philanthropy conference (Jordan Times) "Her Majesty Queen Rania [...] underscored the intrinsic benefits of philanthropy and its potential to address some of humanity’s greatest challenges, describing the instinct to give to others as 'a central piece of what makes us human'." 9/5/18

Philanthropic controversy

  • Province halts construction on Grande Prairie hospital, dismisses contractor (CBC) GRANDE PRAIRIE STORY We first posted about this story in our August 10 recap. "The Alberta government has halted construction on the Grande Prairie Regional Hospital and dismissed the contractor, Graham Construction [...]. Work on the site was halted Monday. The province intends to issue an invitational request for proposals and hire a new company by the end of October. Construction would resume the following month." 9/10/18

  • NT Beverages' charitable foundation has never made a donation (ABC) "A charitable foundation created in 2016 by Darwin water bottler NT Beverages to donate a portion of profits to 'those in need' has never made a donation [...]. ASIC records show the foundation was deregistered in July 2017 — little more than a year after it was established — but NT Beverages continued to claim on the website that the foundation was committed to distributing 10 per cent of the company's pre-tax profits to worthy community causes." 9/9/18

  • A stranger meant to donate $15 to a GoFundMe page. He accidentally gave more than $15,000. (Washington Post) GoFundMe needed to do better here. "The retired 72-year-old clicked on a GoFundMe page for a woman who lives more than 1,500 miles away from him, considered his limited budget and donated $15. Or so he thought. Instead, he somehow donated $15,787." 9/9/18

  • Catholic Business Leaders Hold Back Donation to Vatican Amid Church Crisis (Wall Street Journal) Note: this story is behind a paywall. We include it in this week's recap because of its media currency and import to the sector. "The crisis in the Roman Catholic Church is hitting the Vatican’s bank account. Legatus: Ambassadors for Christ in the Marketplace, an organization of Catholic business leaders, sent a letter to members Thursday saying it would be placing its annual tithe in escrow for now, rather than sending it to Rome. About $820,000 will be placed in escrow, according to a Legatus official." 9/6/18

  • Frank Lloyd Wright House for Sale After Donation Falls Through (New York Times) We first posted on this story in the June 29th recap. "After being saved from demolition and promised to an architecture school, a house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in Phoenix is now for sale for almost $13 million." 9/6/18

  • Government eyeing rework of ‘hometown tax donation’ system to curb use of gifts (The Japan Times) "The government is considering reworking furusato nōzei (hometown tax donation), a system that allows taxpayers who typically live in urban areas to make donations to rural areas in exchange for tax credit, officials said Wednesday. The system was implemented in 2008 as a way to redistribute tax income to cash-strapped municipalities. But it has led to fierce competition for donations and attempts to attract taxpayers with sometimes-extravagant gifts." 9/5/18

Trends and shifts

  • On Philanthropy: Donor-advised funds – Powerful giving tool needs sharpening (Denver Post) "The fastest-growing tool in the philanthropic arena is the donor-advised fund. DAFs are 501(c)(3) philanthropic accounts established at a public charity. They allow donations of cash, property, appreciated assets and more – and donors receive immediate tax deductions [...]. Despite fast growth and unique advantages, DAFs have come under increasing scrutiny and criticism. Among the concerns are a lack of transparency and potential conflicts of interest for financial institutions that offer the funds while earning fees for their investment management." 9/9/18

  • Regina committee postpones decision on new civic naming guidelines (CBC) REGINA STORY I will be following this story with interest. "A proposal to implement new guidelines for naming roads, parks and other public places in Regina has been postponed until November [...]. Among the proposed guidelines are prohibiting names that sound alike, establishing circumstances in which renaming a street or park is allowed, and to prioritize the use of backlog names on an already approved list. However, the proposed guideline that got the most attention was to dedicate 25 per cent of streets and 50 per cent of parks to Indigenous-based names." 9/6/18

  • Increasing Transparency of Australian Philanthropy (Probono Australia) Nice work Australia! "A joint initiative of Philanthropy Australia (PA) and the US-based Foundation Center, Foundation Maps Australia is an interactive and searchable mapping platform aimed at creating greater transparency within philanthropic giving." 9/6/18

Reports and studies

  • The Science of What Makes People Care (Stanford Social Innovation Review) This is a critically important and far-reaching research. Thanks to Scott Decksheimer for sharing this article. "Social service organizations collectively spend millions of dollars each year on communications that focus on informing people. Sadly, these kinds of efforts ignore the scientific principles of what motivates engagement, belief, and behavior change. Consequently, a lot of that money and effort invested in communications is wasted [...]. Effective communication is not simply about getting your message out. It requires you to strategically tap into what shapes people’s feelings and values." Fall 2018

Large gifts

  • UAM Announces Largest Donation Ever (Delta Daily News) "The University of Arkansas at Monticello will be receiving a donation in excess of $6 million. In a Friday news conference in Little Rock Chancellor Karla Hughes said the private gift from the estate of the late Merle and Deloris Peterson, of Dumas, is the largest in the school’s history." 9/10/18

  • $5-million gift enhances children’s health research in Alberta (Folio) EDMONTON STORY "The Distinguished Researchers child health research program will be run at [the Women and Children’s Health Research Institute] (WCHRI) thanks to a $5-million investment from its primary funder, the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation, with support from the University of Alberta and Alberta Health Services’ Stollery Children’s Hospital." 9/10/18

  • Okanagan College receives $1 million donation (Global News) KELOWNA STORY Nice gift. Congrats to all. "The family of Ron Jacobsen donated $1 million to the college’s trades training complex in Kelowna. Jacobsen owned and operated a car dealership in Kelowna for more than 40 years. The donation was made in honour of the late husband and father." 9/9/18

  • UCF Gets Biggest Alumni Donation (US News) "A South Florida couple has made the largest alumni donation pledge in the history of the University of Central Florida. The Orlando-based university said [...] that Vince and Joyce Virga of Fort Lauderdale had pledged a $10.25 million donation to the school. The donation will be used to create the Virga College of Business Fund, which will support a program dedicated to future sales leaders." 9/8/18

  • Class act: $7-million gift boosts Royal Roads University (Times Colonist) VANCOUVER ISLAND STORY Nice gift! "Royal Roads University students will have the use of three new laboratories and 11 classrooms following Friday’s opening of the Sherman Jen building, paid for in part by a $7-million donation. The $24.8-million project received $9.3 million from the federal government, $5.7 million from the province and $7 million from philanthropist Sherman Jen, with the balance supplied by Royal Roads University." 9/7/18

  • YSU receives a $1.5 million donation (The Vindicator) "Youngstown State University has received a $1.5 million donation from the Cafaro family. University President Jim Tressel announced [...] that the Cafaro family, Anthony Sr. and Phyllis, donated $1.5 million to YSU’s 'We See Tomorrow' campaign to fund the construction of the new Cafaro Family Field intramural complex on the north side of campus." 9/7/18

  • Longstanding donor to help increase Lakeland College farm (Lakeland College) LLOYDMINSTER STORY Sweet! ViTreo is proud to be working with Lakeland College. Thanks to Larissa Groch for sharing this story. "Judy Sweet made a $500,000 donation to Lakeland [...] which will be used to increase Lakeland’s farm land base in the future. This gift builds on Judy’s support of the modernization and expansion of the G.N. Sweet Livestock Research Facility, which officially opened on Oct. 20, 2016 in memory of Judy’s late husband Garth." 9/6/18

  • Real estate developer gives MSU largest single donation in school history (WLNS.com) "Real estate developer gives MSU largest single donation in school history [...]. The donation comes from Spartan alum Edward Minskoff, a New York City real estate developer who graduated from MSU in 1962." 9/6/18

  • Bell Burnell: Physics star gives away £2.3m prize (BBC) Amazing. Inspiring. I am running out of superlatives. "One of the UK's leading female astronomers is to donate her £2.3m winnings from a major science prize she was awarded. The sum will go to fund women, under-represented ethnic minority and refugee students to become physics researchers." 9/6/18

  • UC Davis Receives $1 Million From Keck Foundation Following Virus Discovery (UC Davis) CANADIAN CONNECTION "Researchers at the University of California, Davis, and the University of Alberta, Canada, have made preliminary discoveries about how Zika and hepatitis C viruses reproduce at the cellular level, providing new insight into a family of viruses that also includes West Nile and dengue. Now their cutting-edge research will be supported by a $1 million grant from the prestigious W.M. Keck Foundation." 9/6/18

Welcome to our recap of the week's news, articles, and information of note. ViTreo Group Inc. provides this information for the benefit of our clients, associates, staff, partners, and stakeholders. The content is collected and curated by ViTreo partner Vincent Duckworth. If you would like to submit a link for consideration, please send an email to info@vitreogroup.ca

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