The Weekly Round Up: The Best in Nonprofits from Around the Web

Yet another week has passed and, as always, there are tons of interesting articles to read on the web. Here are a few of our favorites this week, including millennial donor personas, a school in the cloud and a prosthetic hand that allows its wearer to feel again.


5 Ways to Celebrate Valentine’s Day With Meaning

Although Valentine’s Day is, in concept, a nice idea to show special appreciation to the ones you love, it can wind up as yet another meaningless shopping frenzy. This article offers ways to ditch the materialism and instead focus on meaningful actions of love.

Re-reading “Collective Impact”: 3 Lessons

In 2011 John Kania & Mark Kramer, two social impact consultants from the firm FSG, wrote about “collective impact” in the SSIR. Their main point: “Large-scale social change requires broad cross-sector coordination, yet the social sector remains focused on the isolated intervention of individual organizations.” A reflection of “Collective Impact,” 3 years later, this article takes a much needed look at strategic partnerships between organizations.

India’s First School in the Cloud Aims to Elevate Kids

The result of a completely fascinating and random experience in India 15 years ago, the School in the Cloud is finally coming to fruition in New Delhi. The experimental school aims to bring education to places that lack access to traditional schooling. Watch founder Sugata Mitra’s TED talk on the idea below:

Nonprofit Blogs

Turning Food Waste Into Electricity

Feeding America let’s us in on a fascinating fact: food can be turned into electricity! The organization supplies food to 37 million people a year, but sometimes the produce they receive goes bad before they can distribute it, so they use the waste to generate renewable energy. Definitely worth a read.

Charity:Water – The Fantastic Five

By now, Charity:Water is well known for its innovative fundraising and marketing and this latest blog post is no exception. They do an excellent job of storytelling and keeping donors connected to their mission, progress and work. In this blog post, they personally introduce us to their next round of field volunteers. Check out this and other posts on their blog for some ideas on storytelling and how to keep donors engaged with your organization.

Nonprofit Marketing

Nonprofit Marketers Guide to the Millenial Persona

Millennials have been a hot topic for a few years now, as the next generation of donors and volunteers comes of age. Millenials have a lot of expectations though – from transparency and accountability to design and usability – this young cohort keeps even the most cutting edge nonprofits scrambling for their undivided attention. Here, Hubspot provides a great look at the Millennial donor persona – a must read for any nonprofit looking to engage this group.

Infographic: Social Media for Social Good

No surprises here, but a really nice representation of the growth of social media over the years and how that growth relates to nonprofit engagement and marketing strategy. A worthy review for any nonprofit marketer.

Nonprofit Operations

How to Improve Idea Flow? Hire Weird

In this opinion piece, data scientist Alex Pentland explores how start ups can stay as creative as possible, for as long as possible. Although he’s talking about businesses here, the same applies to nonprofit organizations. He writes,
[pullquote2 align=”center” textColor=”#000000″]”The most consistently creative and insightful people are explorers. They spend an enormous amount of time seeking out new people and different ideas, without necessarily trying very hard to find the “best” people or “best” ideas.”[/pullquote2]

Inspirational Science

New Dimensions in Health Care: 3D Printing

3D printing is an impressive technology with far reaching implications for almost any sector – medicine, development work and poverty alleviation, construction, archeology – the list goes on and on. This article takes a look at 3D printing prosthetics.

Bionic Hand Allows Amputee to Feel Again

Another incredible foray into the world of science – this article describes how scientists have created a prosthetic, bionic hand that allows an amputee to feel again.

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