Category Archives: News-updates

Medical Charities Scramble to Line Up Ebola Volunteers

Aid groups on the front lines of the Ebola fight in West Africa continue to struggle to attract health-care workers in numbers to go to virus-riven regions in West Africa, writes The Boston Globe. With Ebola work requiring extensive pre-travel training, a minimum six-week assignment, and the increasing likelihood of a 21-day quarantine upon return, many would-be volunteers are unable to commit to months away from their jobs and families, charity officials said.

The World Health Organization esti…

Opinion: Beware ‘Free Market’ Entry Into Disaster Response

A former resident of a Queens neighborhood ravaged by Superstorm Sandy questions the efficacy of “free-market-based” disaster relief in an opinion column for Al Jazeera America. Writer Josmar Trujillo said the post-Sandy work of the Robin Hood Foundation, the anti-poverty nonprofit led by hedge-fund mogul Paul Tudor Jones that aims to apply business practices to charity projects, raises concerns about accountability in raising and allocating millions of dollars in relief donations.

Mr. Trujillo …

Commercial Ariz. College Considers Switch to Nonprofit

Citing prospective tax benefits and the increasingly negative image of for-profit colleges, Grand Canyon University in Arizona is weighing whether to return to its former nonprofit status, The Arizona Republic and The Wall Street Journal report. The Phoenix-based Christian school, which enrolls some 68,000 mostly online students but has a growing physical campus, was purchased by investors in 2004 after falling into financial straits and became a publicly traded firm four years later.

Grand Cany…

New Hirshhorn Museum Chief Plans Bolder Programming

In her first interview since taking office last month as director of the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Melissa Chiu tells The New York Times she hopes to make the contemporary-art museum more of a showcase for experimental and international works. Ms. Chiu, an Australian who formerly led the Asia Society, replaced Richard Koshalek, who resigned last year amid the collapse of his signature project to build a $15.5-million inflatable structure in the museum’s inner courtyard…

Broad Museum in L.A. Now Set for Fall 2015 Opening

The museum billionaire philanthropist Eli Broad is building in downtown Los Angeles to house his collection of contemporary art has staked out the autumn of 2015 for its prospective opening, the Los Angeles Times reports. The institution was initially set to open by the end of this year but construction was delayed by problems creating the building’s complex exterior, which will feature a honeycombed concrete-and-steel facade.

Museum spokesman Karen Denne said no specific date has been set but “…

$20-Million Gift to Seed New Science Building at Ole Miss

The University of Mississippi received a $20-million grant Tuesday from the Gertrude C. Ford Foundation to support construction of a multidisciplinary science building, reports The Clarion-Ledger of Jackson, Miss. The 200,000-square-foot structure will join 10 other facilities on the Oxford campus’s “Science Row” and marks a significant addition to the university’s effort to build its footprint in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

The Jackson-based foundation …

GOP Still Sets the Pace in ‘Dark Money’ Nonprofit Spending

While wealthy liberal donors and left-leaning groups have caught up with conservatives in some areas of independent political spending, Republicans continue to dominate among politically active nonprofits that are not required to disclose their donors, according to the Sunlight Foundation. The nonpartisan watchdog group’s analysis of Federal Election Commission filings found that pro-Republican 501(c)(4) and 501(c)(6) organizations have reported spending $94.6-million on midterm races, more than…

Opinion: Is ‘Big Philanthropy’ Incompatible with Democracy?

A longtime foundation leader offers a lengthy critique of the burgeoning role of “big philanthropy” in driving public policy in an essay for the journal Democracy.

Gara LaMarche, formerly of George Soros’ Open Society Institute and the Atlantic Philanthropies, writes that he long urged foundations to eschew “simple charity” and rather to tackle the root causes of hunger, poverty, and other ills. He says he now has growing doubts “about the legitimacy of philanthropy in its engagement with the de…

Media Report Assails Red Cross Response to 2012 Disasters

The Red Cross botched its emergency response to Hurricane Isaac in August 2012 and Superstorm Sandy two months later, leaving many victims in dire straits as the charity mismanaged volunteers and reportedly diverted vehicles and supplies for photo opportunities, according to a joint investigation by ProPublica and NPR.

The reports cite internal Red Cross documents, emails, and accounts of two “mass care chiefs” who directed work on the ground in detailing problems with the charity’s relief effor…

D.C. Court Blocks Charter School’s Payments to Founder’s Firm

A Washington, D.C., judge has issued a preliminary injunction barring a charter school from paying fees to a management company set up by the institution’s founder, who is facing a city lawsuit over the multimillion-dollar payments, reports The Washington Post. Superior Court Judge Neal E. Kravitz said he believes the city has a strong likelihood of showing at trial that the nonprofit Dorothy I. Height Community Academy Public Charter School overpaid Kent Amos by about $1-million last year alone…