Tag: Rick Cohen

New report on the power of the grantmaking/grantseeking relationship

The Daily WRAG will return on Monday, November 23 as we prepare for our 2015 Annual Meeting!

The Center for Nonprofit Advancement has released a new study, Return on Investment, diving into the challenges facing social profit organizations trying to enhance services while also sustaining resources. The report looks into social profit professional development, capacity building, and grantmaker engagement/relationships to better meet the needs of the sector. (Center for Nonprofit Advancement, 11/18)

WRAG president Tamara Lucas Copeland said this of the report’s findings:

“According to Return on Investment, a new release from the Center for Nonprofit Advancement, the social profit/nonprofit community needs and wants more unrestricted dollars, more professional development support, and a relationship of equals with their funders. Research by the Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers shows that funders recognize the ‘lack of funding’ as the number one need of social profits, and note ‘capacity building grants’ as the third highest category of their grantmaking after ‘project/program specific’ and ‘general operating grants.’ And for the last two years, the funding community has ranked ‘collective impact’ as the number one trend that they see in philanthropy; so the notion of arriving at a shared vision between the philanthropic and social profit sectors – planning among equals – may be more on the horizon than is immediately apparent. To my colleagues in the social profit/nonprofit sector, I would say, ‘I don’t think we’re missing the mark, I think we’re at the early stages of an exciting culture shift. Onward.’”

You can click here to access the full report.

– The philanthropic and social profit communities have experienced a great loss as Rick Cohen, well-known national Nonprofit Quarterly correspondent, thought-leader, and social justice advocate, has passed away (Chronicle, 11/17):

“His loss will be inestimable to many of you, as it is to us,” Nonprofit Quarterly editors wrote in announcing the death. “Rick will be remembered for his integrity, his powerful and nimble intellect, his unyielding courage in pursuit of truth, his commitment to social justice, and his humor.”

–  The board of directors of the Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers has announced longtime philanthropy executive and current president and CEO of Florida Philanthropic Network David Biemesderfer as the organization’s next president and CEO. His new role will begin in mid-January 2016. Click here to find out more about the appointment.

– For the seventh-consecutive year, Booz Allen Hamilton has received a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index, a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBT equality in the workplace. (Booz Allen Hamilton, 11/18)

TRANSIT/MARYLAND | Md. receives four proposals to build light-rail Purple Line (WaPo, 11/17)

EDUCATION/PHILANTHROPY | Bloomberg Business takes a look at how more public universities are pushing for ambitious fundraising goals as some of their private peers have been the recipients of mega gifts in recent years. (Bloomberg Business, 11/12)

RACIAL EQUITY/SOCIAL JUSTICE | Police Are More Aggressive Overall in Encounters With African Americans (City Lab, 11/17)

When it comes to public speaking, it’s all about using your hands.

– Ciara

New reports on the critical need for affordable housing in the Greater Washington Region

In response to alarming data surrounding housing affordability in the region, the Greater Washington Housing Leaders Group (GWHLG) presents a new report by Nonprofit Quarterly columnist Rick Cohen. The report – supported by Enterprise Community Partners, Citi Foundation, and WRAG – highlights the need for collaboration to invest in solving the region’s affordable housing crisis. Click here to access the full report, Call the Question: Will the Greater Washington Region Collaborate and Invest to Solve its Affordable Housing Shortage? 

Since June 2014, the Greater Washington Housing Leaders Group – a collection of more than a dozen public and private sector leaders concerned about housing affordability – has been meeting to examine: 1) the nature of the affordable housing shortage in the greater Washington area; 2) the relationship of housing affordability to economic growth; and 3) strategies to increase affordable housing for low- and moderate-income households in the region.

In July 2014, The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region released new research, Housing Security in the Washington Region, prepared by the Urban Institute and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments based on 2011 data, the most recent available. A key finding of the study concludes that, currently, 250,000 households (including 147,000 renter households) making less than 80 percent of the area median income are paying more than half of their gross income on housing costs.

The full extent of the affordable housing shortage required an analysis of future economic growth and accompanying populations. Research from the George Mason University Center for Regional Analysis (CRA) shows that future growth industries for our region will be in the retail, hospitality, healthcare, and construction sectors – jobs which pay lower wages. Thousands of critical jobs in today’s workforce also fall in the lowerto moderate-income range, including teachers, health care professionals, entry level office workers, and local government employees. In 2015, CRA developed affordable housing need projections based on their latest regional economic outlook projections showing a need for the region to provide 149,000 new low-income housing units between 2011 and 2023 to accommodate projected job growth in the region.


– Another newly-released report (mentioned above) by Jeannette Chapman of the George Mason University Center for Regional Analysis – commissioned by Enterprise Community Partners, and supported by GWHLG – focuses on regional solutions for Greater Washington’s affordable housing needs by the year 2023. The report titled, The Greater Washington Region’s Future Housing Needs: 2023, can be found here.

– The Housing Association of Nonprofit Developers (HAND) has released a public service announcement campaign to raise awareness about the great need for affordable housing using statistics about the average take-home pay for the professionals who are often very important in our daily lives. Have you seen this PSA around yet?

What’s ‘new’ in affordable housing? Not a lot — yet (Elevation DC, 6/19)

EDUCATION/DISTRICT | After a recent independent evaluation on the state of D.C. schools by the National Research Council, education leaders agree that although the system has come a long way, it still needs a lot of work to get to where it needs to be. (WaPo, 6/22)

POVERTY | A quarter of Americans are one emergency away from financial ruin (WaPo, 6/23)

How’s this for a real Metro map? What do you think?

– Ciara

An emergency motion to place the District’s homeless

There’s lots of news to share, so here’s your regular Daily WRAG edition instead of the Friday roundup. Enjoy your weekend!

This winter has been so cold that the District has seen 66 days of hypothermia alerts. There are still seven weeks left in hypothermia season. With policies in place to house homeless families in private rooms during nights that turn brutally cold, the city has found itself in a difficult situation as the Bowser administration has filed a motion to begin placing the homeless in makeshift shelters. (WaPo, 2/6)

The development offered the latest sign of the depth of this year’s homelessness crisis in the District, which has accepted an average of 12 new homeless families – often single mothers with young children – into shelter each night the temperature has dipped below freezing.


The District is one of the country’s rare jurisdictions with a legal right to shelter on freezing nights. It is also among the most rapidly gentrifying urban cores in the nation, with an estimated 5,000 families teetering on the brink of homelessness amid rising living costs and escalating home prices.

The city on Thursday was within a day of running out of motel space for more families, and it has yet to find another operator willing to lease additional rooms for the homeless, the District argued in its motion. If no other option becomes apparent, D.C. is within days of having to resort to some lesser form of shelter, it said.

Volunteers fan out in the wee hours to count homeless in Montgomery (Gazette, 2/2)

EDUCATION/DISTRICT | At-risk funding in the District: A-school-by-school breakdown (WaPo, 2/6)

NONPROFITS | Now that President Obama has laid out his proposed 2016 federal budget, Rick Cohen gives us a glimpse at what nonprofits can anticipate if the proposals pass through Congress. (NPQ, 2/4)

Related: WRAG CEOs are invited to a coffee and conversation session with Rick Cohen on February 18th at 9:00AM where he’ll be discussing his 10 predictions for nonprofits and foundations in 2015. For more information, click here.

– The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia has released its 2013-2014 Annual Report, “A Year of Community Leadership,” highlighting its work in the region. (CFNOVA, 2/5)

FOOD | Are Farmers Market Sales Peaking? That Might Be Good For Farmers (NPR, 2/5)


Healthy Communities Working Group: February Meeting (WRAG members) 
Monday, February 9, 2015  12:00PM – 2:00PM

A Morning With The Mayor: A Funder Conversation With Mayor Muriel Bowser (WRAG members)
Tuesday, February 10, 2015  9:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Get on the Map: A How-To Webinar (WRAG members)
Thursday, February 12, 2015  2:00PM – 2:45PM

Valentine’s Day is approaching. Which city in the region was named one of the “most romantic” cities in the nation?

– Ciara