Age is Just a Number

Every now and then, and advertisement is so simple in its design that you can’t help but take notice. Amid the noise of a 24-7 media culture, a simple concept with a powerful message can leave an unexpected, lasting impression on the viewer. Though some Madison Avenue execs have perfected this art to promote consumer products (i.e. any iPhone ad you’ve ever seen. ever.), others have used this method to call attention to important social issues.

This week, Advertising Age featured a PSA by Age U.K., a British advocacy group for older people, as its “Ad of the Day.”

“The ad, titled “Love Later Life,” features a poem by English beat poet Roger McGough that was commissioned for the spot and is expertly read by 91-year-old Sir Christopher Lee. It’s the one inescapable element of the human condition that connects us all: nothing can stop us from growing older. But the ad’s simple visuals of people aging from childhood to age 102 let the message truly shine that age, in some ways, really is a state of mind.”

Testimonials on the Age U.K. website add depth to ad’s message by featuring audio and video of older individuals depicting the challenges of aging, which include issues such as financial challenges, health care and emotional support.

The Catalogue for Philanthropy has 10 charities that are passionately focused on the issue of aging, and each has ways that you can help whether by giving a donation or your time.

What can you do with $100?

Looking to volunteer?

Capitol Hill Village: Capitol Hill Village is just that: a virtual village in livable, walkable surroundings where volunteers unite to help older adults age safely and comfortably ? in their own homes and in their beloved neighborhood. Capitol Hill Village is a “volunteer first” organization, meaning that they use volunteers when we can to fill request from our members. Services request can range from gardening to rides to physicians appointments to friendly visiting and walks. CHV also relies greatly on volunteers to provide administrative duties, such as writing articles for our newsletter and working in the office.

Seabury Resources for the Aging seeks friendly visitors for isolated older adults; home repair and maintenance projects so that seniors can age in place more safely, meal delivery, office support, committees and councils to support our work in the community, work on public education efforts, website/IT support or building spruce up projects.

#GivingTuesday Best Practices Summit 3/18/2014

“Oh the weather outside is frightful,
but planning for #GivingTuesday can be so delightful…”

Monday’s “snowpatricksday” storm may not have been our idea of spring weather, but it was the perfect backdrop to get us in a winter mindset for today’s #GivingTuesday Best Practices Summit at the United Nations Foundation Headquarters in the District.

The all-day summit brought together fundraising experts, thought leaders and key partners that helped make #GivingTuesday 2013 a success. For those unable to attend in-person, the UN Foundation’s LiveStream channel allowed others from all over the U.S. (and the world!) to listen in.

#GivingTuesday is a campaign to create a national day of giving at the start of the annual holiday season. It celebrates and encourages charitable activities that support nonprofit organizations. This year’s #GivingTuesday is on Tuesday, December 2nd.

Although #GivingTuesday is still more than 8 months away, it’s not too early to begin planning. Below are some quick tips we learned from various panelists throughout the day:
  • START EARLY! It’s never too early to begin building anticipation for #GivingTuesday on your social networks. Use the tools that givingtuesday.org provides and find ways to incorporate them in your communications plans throughout the year. Also, now is the time to start evaluating your online giving experience (through your website, social media, etc.). You can do a lot with marketing and social media, but if the donation experience you offer your users is complicated or confusing, your efforts may fall flat. The simpler the better!
  • Get Creative! Been itching to try a fun new donor outreach initiative? Don’t be afraid to try something new on #GivingTuesday. “Surprise and Delight” your audience by making giving a fun, fulfilling experience.
  • Establish metrics! How can people make a difference with their donation? How will you measure the success of your campaign? As one panelist said, “You can’t analyze data if you don’t have it.” Start thinking about your metrics (and how you’ll communicate them) now.
  • Collaborate! #GivingTuesday is the perfect opportunity for nonprofits to work hand-in-hand with other nonprofits to share resources and best practices. Talk to others in your network, and brainstorm how you can work together to make a big impact on December 3rd.
  • Establish partnerships! Pick your 5 dream partners and ask them to participate in #GivingTuesday with you. Given that this is a rapidly growing, national movement, this could be a great way to get a foot in the door.
  • Have fun! Above all, #GivingTuesday should be a fun experience for your organization and your donors. If you can communicate your organization’s enthusiasm, donors will take note and feel the same!

For more great tips on #GivingTuesday, we recommend following @givingtues on Twitter for continuing updates and ideas to make the most of the day.

Stay tuned for more on CFP’s #GivingTuesday planning throughout the year…

Around Town 3/14-3/20

CFP nonprofits are busy *trying* to usher in some springtime happiness and they have some great events going on to prove it! Check out what is going around town with this week:

Friday, March 14, 2014

Hexagon’s Midterm Madness!

Sarah’s Circle
Sarah’s Circle is the 2014 beneficiary for Hexagon, Washington’s only original political satirical musical comedy revue. Throughout the month of March 2014, Hexagon will be delighting audiences with its hilarious season, Midterm Madness, and will donate every penny of profit to the work of Sarah’s Circle, which provides supportive, affordable housing to very low-income senior citizens in Washington, DC.
When: Fri Mar 14 2014 (8:00 PM)
Where: Montgomery College Cultural Arts Center, 7995 Georgia Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Fee? yes $30 per ticket
Volunteer Info: We also need volunteers to serve in a variety of functions: front-of-house services, set builders and painters, etc. Please contact Hexagon via www.hexagon.org for more information.
Contact: Jessica Petro, (202) 332-1400 ext 11
For more information: click here

Saturday, March 15, 2014

STORMWATER SOLUTIONS: Rain Barrels and More!

Anacostia Watershed Society
Did you know that polluted stormwater is the fastest growing type of pollutant to our streams? This workshop provides solutions to stormwater runoff which includes a rain barrel talk and demonstration along with the ins and outs of Prince George’s County Rain Check Rebate program. The funding for these rebates comes from the polluted runoff fee. In the afternoon, an eco-tour of Greenbelt Public Works facility will feature multiple stormwater reduction techniques such as cisterns, pervious pavement, and meadows restoration. There will be educational and fun activities for families, including hands-on watershed models along with availability to purchase rain barrels and paint them on the spot!
When: Sat Mar 15 2014 (10:00 AM – 3:00 PM)
Where: Greenbelt Public Works Building, 555 Crescent Road, Greenbelt, MD 20770
Fee? no
Contact: Alex Palmer, (202) 542-2168
For more information: click here

MD Swim @ Georgetown Prep

KEEN Greater DC (Kids Enjoy Exercise Now)
Volunteer coaches are paired one-on-one with young athletes. Athletes are encouraged to have fun and socialize in the water with their assigned coaches and other athletes. A variety of water toys and equipment such as rafts, basketball and hoop, diving rings, kick boards and other flotation devices help to keep the time fun for all involved. New this year: KEEN Swim will also include the Joey Pizzano Memorial Fund’s Make a Splash program. KEEN’s swimmers and their coaches will enjoy games and activities that teach water safety skills while having fun in and around the water. Volunteers should arrive at 4:00 pm to ensure that they have time to review the information about the athlete they will be coaching during the session and to participate in a basic orientation about the JPMF Make a Splash water safety rules and activities and ways to make the best out of the time that they have to spend with the athletes.
When: Sat Mar 15 2014 (4:00 PM)
Where: Georgetown Prep – Hanley Center, 10900 Rockville Pike, North Bethesda, MD 20852
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Volunteer coaches are paired one-on-one with young athletes. KEEN’s swimmers and their coaches will enjoy games and activities that teach water safety skills while having fun in and around the water.
Contact: KEEN DC, (301) 770-3200
For more information: click here

The Art of Social Dance

Joe’s Movement Emporium/World Arts Focus
A benefit for Joe’s Movement Emporium. Put on your dancin’ shoes and join us for an evening of partner dancing — everything from hand dancing and salsa to swing and tango!
When: Sat Mar 15 2014 (7:00 PM – 10:00 PM)
Where: Joe’s Movement Emporium, 3309 Bunker Hill Road, Mount Rainier, MD 20712
Fee? yes $100 ea. Sponsorships Available*
Volunteer Info: Assist with set-up, clean-up, guest check-in, food set up, bartenders
Contact: Melissa Rosenberg, (301) 699-1819
For more information: click here

Giving Voice Award Gala

Young Playwrights’ Theater
Sample your way through DC with food and drinks from local restaurants, enter to win unique raffle prizes and dance the night away to live music as we honor artist, activist and entrepreneur Andy Shallal with our 2014 Giving Voice Award. The YPT Giving Voice Award recognizes extraordinary individuals who have exemplified YPT’s spirit and vision by giving voice to the voiceless and inspiring others to realize their full potential. Dress code: black tie, blue jeans or both! Proceeds to benefit YPT and inspire thousands of local students to discover the power and value of their voices and stories through playwriting.
When: Sat Mar 15 2014 (7:30 PM – 11:00 PM)
Where: Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, 641 D St NW, Washington, DC 20004
Fee? yes $50 per ticket (a portion of which is tax deductible)
Contact: Alison Beyrle, (202) 387-9173
For more information: click here

Hexagon’s Midterm Madness!

Sarah’s Circle
Sarah’s Circle is the 2014 beneficiary for Hexagon, Washington’s only original political satirical musical comedy revue. Throughout the month of March 2014, Hexagon will be delighting audiences with its hilarious season, Midterm Madness, and will donate every penny of profit to the work of Sarah’s Circle, which provides supportive, affordable housing to very low-income senior citizens in Washington, DC. We hope you will join us for a show!
When: Sat Mar 15 2014 (8:00 PM)
Where: Montgomery College Cultural Arts Center, 7995 Georgia Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Fee? yes $30 per ticket
Volunteer Info: We also need volunteers to serve in a variety of functions: front-of-house services, set builders and painters, etc. Please contact Hexagon via www.hexagon.org for more information.
Contact: Jessica Petro, (202) 332-1400 ext 11
For more information: click here

Raise Your City: A Benefit for Sitar Arts Center

Sitar Arts Center
Please join us at Hiearchy on Saturday, March 15th at 9:00PM with our friends at The Intentional for a special evening of music, art, and philanthropy. All profits will go to our selected beneficiary, Sitar Arts Center. Music by: Pleasure Curses, The Walking Sticks, Wanted Man, and DJ Provoke Art Exhibition by: Kelly Towles Live Painting by: Rose Jaffe Photography by: Studio 1527 The first 25 people in the door will get a free copy of The Intentional Quarterly Issue #1 so come early! Issue #1 and #2 will be available for purchase throughout the night.
When: Sat Mar 15 2014 (9:00 PM)
Where: Hiearchy, 1841 Columbia Road NW, Washington, DC 20009
Fee? yes $10 in advance // $20 at the door
Contact: Sitar Arts Center, (202) 797-2145
For more information: click here

Monday, March 17, 2014

Junior Coach Leadership Conference

Playworks
Playworks DC is excited to bring together 150 Junior Coaches from across the city to participate in a leadership conference and meet their fellow peer leaders from our 13 partner schools. Volunteers are needed to help travel to and from the event with the coaches and students as wells as enrichment?and game support during the event.
When: Mon Mar 17 2014 (10:00 AM – 2:00 PM)
Where: Verizon Center, 601 F St NW, Washington, DC 20004
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Volunteers can sign up for one of the following options: 1. Support the event from 10am to Noon by traveling to the event with students and assisting with station rotations through lunchtime 2. Support the event from Noon to 2:30pm by assisting with station rotations after lunchtime and traveling back to school with the students 3. Support the whole day by traveling to and from the event with students and participating in our enrichment and game stations throughout the day
Contact: Andrea Stark, (202) 822-0097
For more information: click here

40th Anniversary: Community Foundation National Capital Region

Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington
Special anniversaries call for special celebrations. For Community Foundation’s 40th anniversary party, we want to celebrate with you: the nonprofits, donors, and community members who make our region a vibrant and wonderful place to call home. The evening features: Performances by local nonprofits artists & Grammy-nominated musician Christylez Bacon; Maureen Andary of the award-winning duo The Sweater Set; spoken word artists and poets Regie Cabico, Patrick Washington, G. Yamazawa, Safia Elhillo, Silvana Straw, Gowri K., Drew Law, and 2DEEP; Adventure Theatre MTC; Dana Tai Soon Burgess Dance Company; Joe’s Movement Emporium; Levine Music; and N Street Village. Multiple stages will feature performances throughout the evening choose what you want to see! More on our fabulous artists here. Networking with funders, colleagues, elected officials, community stakeholders, & friends Open bar featuring spirits, wine, beer, & specialty cocktails Passed hors d’oeuvres & delicious food stations including award-winning BBQ, plenty of vegetarian options, and corned beef and Guinness for St. Patty’s Day!
When: Mon Mar 17 2014 (6:00 PM – 10:00 PM)
Where: The Mead Center for American Theater, Home of Arena Stage, 1101 Sixth Street SW, Washington, DC 20024
Fee? yes $90 for young professionals and nonprofits
Contact: http://cfncr40th.org/, (202) 955-5890
For more information: click here

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Family Friendly Warehouse Volunteering

DC Diaper Bank
Come help us in the warehouse! Volunteering is family friendly and all are welcome whether it’s for one hour or four. We’ll be sorting and packing diapers and even little hands can help with that (or just play in the play area!). Our Volunteer Dates are a great way to starting talking about giving back and community in a very tangible way that kids can relate to well.
When: Tue Mar 18 2014 (09:00 AM – 1:00 PM)
Where: DC Diaper Bank Warehouse 8858 Monard Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Sorting and packing diapers; helping with other inventory
Contact: Heather Foley, (202) 656-8503

2014 Rock Paper Scissors Tournament

Playworks
Rock crushes scissors. Scissors cut paper. Paper covers rock…. You know the drill. But do you have what it takes to be champion of the country’s most powerful playground Washington, DC? Bring your friends and colleagues for a fast-paced, high-fiving night and a chance to network, unwind, and support play for every kid in Washington, DC. With skill (and luck!) you can win some awesome raffle prizes and become the next Rock Paper Scissors ROCKSTAR! -
When: Tue Mar 18 2014 (5:30 PM)
Where: Penn Social, 801 E St NW, Washington, DC 20004
Fee? yes $15 in advance; $20 at the door; Corporate Teams = $500 for 8 players & sponsorship
Volunteer Info:
Contact: Andrea Stark, (202) 822-0097
For more information: click here

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Whine/Wine Wednesday

DC Diaper Bank
Come join us Wednesday nights for Whine/Wine Wednesday! Bring your own “whine” or wine! Help us bundle diapers for the families we serve and make great new friends.
When: Wed Mar 19 2014 (6:30 PM – 8:30 PM)
Where: DC Diaper Bank Warehouse 8858 Monard Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Sorting and packing diapers; helping with other inventory
Contact: Corinne Cannon, (202) 656-8503

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Volunteer Information Session

Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA)/Prince George’s County
Have you been looking for an opportunity to volunteer and make a difference in your community? Learn how to be a voice for a foster child! CASA volunteers are appointed by the courts to advocate for the best needs of children in foster care. At our information session you will learn about the continued need for volunteers in our county to give voices to children and youth in care. We are seeking volunteers from a variety of educational and professional backgrounds. Volunteers must be 21 or older and complete our background check/screening process. There will be a short Q&A at the end of the session.
When: Thu Mar 20 2014 (6:00 PM – 7:30 PM)
Where: Hyattsville Administrative Building, 4310 Gallatin St. Hyattsville, MD 20781
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: This is an opportunity for prospective volunteers to learn about the opportunities at CASA
Contact: Simon Lee, (301) 209-0491
For more information: click here

Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena Makes Skating Accessible to All

At the Catalogue for Philanthropy we’re always so excited when one of our charities’ programs is in the media, especially when that media is the front page of the Washington Post! Today, Post writer Jacqueline Kantor covered the Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club, a program which is housed in the Fort Dupont Ice Arena (the Catalogue is proud to have the Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena as one of our Human Services charities).

Described as a “little-known secret” in Southeast D.C., the 36-year-old Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club (also known as the Fort Dupont Cannons) is the oldest club in a National Hockey League program that was designed to promote the sport in urban neighborhoods. Each week, children ages 8-18 hit the ice to not only practice the sport of hockey, but also to gain new experiences through travel, and learn important lessons such as the value of hard work and gratitude. While participation comes at no financial cost to players and their families, coaches do expect students to share their report cards with coaches and attend practice regularly. All of this seems to pay off, as the program boasts an impressive 95 percent high school graduation rate. To read the full article about the Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club in the Washington Post, click here.

Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena

In 1996 the goal was simple: prevent the National Park Service’s scheduled closing of the only public indoor ice arena in DC. Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena succeeded, not only in saving the rink, but also in creating a vibrant community resource in Ward 7. Today, the Fort Dupont Ice Arena — an America’s Promise “Safe Place” for young people with structured activities during non-school hours — offers number of programs for young people to stay fit and learn valuable lessons about life.

One of those programs, Kids On Ice, is a community ice skating program for children ages 5 to 18 years old, offering free lessons with all equipment provided. Kids on Ice programs include basic skating skills, speed and figure skating, ice hockey (see above), and more. Since all of these programs are at no cost to participants, Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena relies on the community to help through volunteer work, material and financial contributions.

Volunteer opportunities: Are you a medium-advanced level skater willing to lend a hand for a few hours each week? Channel your inner Dorothy Hamill or Apollo Ohno as an instructor for a Kids on Ice class! All Kids on Ice classes are taught by volunteer instructors. Each of the five programs — Basic Skills, Advanced Figure Skating, Synchronized Skating, Ice Hockey, and Speed Skating — are managed by a qualified instructor who instructs volunteers how to teach each specific class.

In addition to helping on the rink, volunteers are also needed off the rink to help with general office assistance during the week, and concessions and skate shop assistance on Saturdays. Click the “volunteer” link on the Catalogue page for details.

To donate: You can also support the Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena by donating equipment, offering scholarship support, or directly supporting the Kids on Ice Program through a donation to Friends of Fort Dupont Ice Arena. For $50, you can provide helmets and gloves for new ice skaters; $250: 8 weeks of Learn to Skate; $500: two skating lessons for a school group of 30 children.

Thinking Beyond Barbie: Empowering Girls in Greater Washington

Michelle Obama.

Sheryl Sandberg.

Oprah Winfrey.

Mrs. Potato Head?

This unlikely combination of women has more in common than meets the eye: Each plays a role (whether consciously or not) in inspiring confidence in young girls to pursue their career ambitions, no matter how big. There are dozens of other female leaders who do so much each day to empower young women, yet according to a recent study, one pop culture icon is not likely to make the cut: Barbie.

A recent study coming out of Oregon State University suggests that little girls playing with Barbie “believe there are more careers for boys than for themselves” — a contrast from girls playing with Mrs. Potato Head, who see an equal range of career opportunities for girls and boys.

Of course, more research on this topic is needed in order fully to understand the impact of dolls on girls’ aspirations, but one key takeaway is that we must inspire confidence in girls so they don’t hesitate to think “big” and think beyond the stereotypes that hold them back. We can do this not only through the toys we buy for our children, but also through the stories we tell, and the activities in which we participate.

For several Catalogue for Philanthropy charities, such as Girls on the Run (DC and Montgomery County) and The Washington School for Girls, inspiring confidence in girls is a central part of their mission. Find out below how you can show your support, and stay tuned to the Catalogue for Philanthropy blog this month as we celebrate Women’s History Month by highlighting other important women’s issues that are a key focus for some of our charities.

Girls on the Run

The Catalogue for Philanthropy is proud to have two local Girls on the Run Councils in our network of charities. Using the sport of running as basis for inspiration and motivation, GOTR program participants meet twice per week in small teams where they learn life skills while celebrating the joy of movement. At each season’s conclusion, participants complete a 5k running event, giving them a tangible sense of achievement as well as a framework for setting and achieving life goals.

Girls on the Run — DC: GOTR-DC has a variety of volunteer opportunities available, from one-time volunteer opportunities to coaching for a 10-week season. GOTR-DC is currently looking for volunteers for the GW Classic 10 Miler on April 13th, and is also taking names for those interested in coaching for the Fall 2014 season.

Interested in supporting with a donation? For $185, you can cover a full scholarship for 1 runner; $750: running shoes for an entire team; $3,000: a full scholarship for a full team next season (great idea for a corporate fundraiser!)

Girls on the Run of Montgomery County is also looking for coaches and one-time volunteers. Check out the volunteer page for more detail on specific needs.

Interested in supporting with a donation? $100 will cover a full scholarship for 1 season; $500: running shoes for one team of 15 girls; $1000: race fees for 75 parents to run alongside their daughters. Also, don’t forget about SoleMates, which lets you run a marathon or a triathlon while raising money for MoCo’s Girls on the Run Council.

The Washington School for Girls

The Washington School for Girls is an all-girl, grades 4-8, Catholic school located in Anacostia. Its mission is to offer a solid and holistic education to young girls, and it is committed to believing in their gifts, talents and potential. WSG offers a range of volunteer opportunities: from one-time visits – where volunteers participate in a career fair, leadership series presentation or fundraising event – to weekly tutoring, hosting student clubs during Extended Day and office support.

Interested in supporting with a donation? $100 covers 10 books for the Reading Circle; $500: 1 laptop for a WMSG teacher; $1000: transportation for 3 field trips for 1 class.

We hope you’ll support these wonderful organizations and their missions to empower girls in our region!

Around Town 3/10-3/13

We are back in action with a special Monday edition of Around Town! If you are looking to make your week a little bit more lively, check out these great events put on by CFP nonprofits!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Tuesday Warehouse Volunteering

DC Diaper Bank
Come help us in the warehouse! Volunteering is family friendly and all are welcome whether it’s for one hour or four. We’ll be sorting and packing diapers and even little hands can help with that (or just play in the play area!). Our Volunteer Dates are a great way to starting talking about giving back and community in a very tangible way that kids can relate to well.
When: Tue Mar 11 2014 (09:00 AM – 1:00 PM)
Where: DC Diaper Bank Warehouse 8858 Monard Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Sorting and packing diapers; helping with other inventory
Contact: Heather Foley, (202) 656-8503

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Speaker Series on Recreation & Cultural Activities for Seniors

Senior Services of Alexandria
Learn about the many activities and programs available for Alexandria’s mature adults including: Aquatics and Rec Centers; Classes and Clubs; Parks & Open Spaces; Robust Walking and the Alexandria Library Programs and Series.
When: Wed Mar 12 2014 (09:30 AM – 12:00 NOON)
Where: Chinquapin Recreation Center, 3210 King Street Alexandria, VA 22304
Fee? no
Contact: ?admin@seniorservicesalex.org, (703) 836-4414 ext 10
For more information: click here

One Hour, One World Tour

Ayuda
If you would like to get a first person introduction to Ayuda’s work and learn how you could get involved, please join us for one of our frequent One Hour, One World tours. Please sign up for a time and feel free to bring friends. (Tours are conducted in English)
When: Wed Mar 12 2014 (6:00 PM – 7:00 PM)
Where: Ayuda DC office, 6925B Willow Street NW, Washington, DC 20012
Fee? no
Contact: Elise Webb, (202) 387-4848 ext 130
For more information: click here

Hunger Knows No Season: What will you do today?

According to a recent article by Tana Ganeva in AlterNet (“5 Worst States to be a Poor Kid”), “Last year, America placed next to last in a ranking of child well-being in 35 developed countries, barely beating out Romania.” This is a shocking statement — or perhaps not. It’s no secret that one in five American children lives in “relative” poverty, but what is striking is that “close to half of poverty-stricken kids live in extreme poverty, which means their families earn less than half the poverty level of $11,746 per year for a family of four.”

Despite the efforts of many terrific organizations hell bent on pulling people out of poverty — like DC-based Share Our Strength whose mission is to end childhood hunger, and the many charities in the Catalogue for Philanthropy — there has been, according to Ganeva, a 23 percent rise in child hunger. In some parts of the country, 1 child out 4 is poor. There is nothing acceptable about a 25 percent poverty rate for children. While children in poverty do benefit from safety net programs, like the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (or SNAP/food stamps, as it is commonly known), and advocates such as D.C. Hunger Solutions (which works closely with the city government to make sure food policies are effective and ensures that those who serve needy families can connect with existing nutrition programs), there is no question that as individuals we must do more to aid our neighbors in need.

Nearly two hundred Catalogue charities are dedicated to supporting Human Services. Catalogue charities such as D.C. Hunger Solutions, Arlington Food Assistance Center, Food for Others, Manna Food Center and Our Daily Bread all have programs designed to help families in poverty, and each has very tangible ways for the community to help: at Arlington Food Assistance Center, $100 will supply 1 week’s food for 10 families, and at Manna Food Center, the same amount supplies Smart Sacks (backpacks full of kid-friendly food) for 25 school kids. Volunteers for Our Daily Bread can organize a drive to collect grocery cards, while at Food for Others, they can help the warehouse staff record incoming and outgoing food, pack emergency food and USDA boxes and sort and shelve products.

While it isn’t December, and the “giving season” is months away, the truth is that hunger knows no season. Yes, the number of children in poverty is staggering, and on some levels, even intimidating, but by taking simple steps and helping our neighbors in need throughout the year, we can make a real difference in ending child hunger in Greater Washington. What will you do today?

Around Town 2/28-3/6

Looking for a fun event during the first week of March? These nonprofits have got you covered. Remember–if you head to an event, let us know! We would love to hear your stories on Facebookor Twitter!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Pope Branch Invasive Plant Species Removal

Anacostia Watershed Society
Please join the Anacostia Watershed Society as we work to restore Pope Branch. We will be removing invasive plants and vines in Pope Branch Park in Washington, DC — and we need your help!
When: Fri Feb 28 2014 (10:00 AM – 1:00 PM)
Where: Pope Branch Park, 3300 block of N. St SE, Washington, DC 20019
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Remove invasive plants & vines in Pope Branch Park. Please note: Bending, lifting, walking, and digging will be required. If you think this will be problematic, please contact us or join us for another event. Dress in layers!
Contact: Ann DeSanctis, (301) 699-6204 ext 109
For more information: click here

Bowen McCauley Modern Master Class @ Joy of Motion

Bowen McCauley Dance
Join Bowen McCauley Dance (BMD) for a dance master class with acclaimed Artistic Director and Choreographer, Lucy Bowen McCauley. This class will focus on contemporary movement featuring ballet and modern dance technique. Experience the artistic process first-hand as BMD guides you through original choreography, teaching excerpts from the company repertoire. Sign up here: http://www.joyofmotion.org/adult-program/adult-workshops-and-master-classes/ Don’t miss BMD’s performance of From the Ground Up, on Friday, March 7 at 7:00 p.m. at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, Sprenger Theatre, 1333H Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002. BMD is presented as part of INTERSECTIONS at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, Feb 21- March 8, 2014. Tickets are $22.00 and $16.50 students/seniors. For more information, visit www.bmdc.org/upcoming or call the Atlas Box Office (202) 399-7993 x 2.
When: Fri Feb 28 2014 (7:00 PM – 9:00 PM)
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center, 1333 H Street NE, Washington, DC 20002
Fee? yes $25 in advance; $30 day of workshop
Contact: Joy of Motion, (202) 399-6763
For more information: click here

The Cole Porter Project

The In Series
“A trip to the moon on gossamer wings,” says the song, as our swellegant party celebrates Cole Porter’s incomparable words-and-music. Come and revisit the work of an American master who defined the sophisticated soul of a complex era! Conceived and Directed by Steven Scott Mazzola and Greg Stevens Music Director: Paul Leavitt
When: Fri Feb 28 2014 (8:00 PM)
Where: SOURCE, 1835 14th St., NW, Washington, DC 20009
Fee? yes $38 general; $35 seniors;: $20 students and children
Volunteer Info: Usher, box office
Contact: Gregory Stuart, Executive Assistant, (202) 204-7765
For more information: click here

Saturday, March 01, 2014

Caregiver Rejuvenation Retreat

Smith Center for Healing and the Arts
Caregiver retreats cater to the unique needs that caregivers face. They aim to help strengthen innate healing mechanisms by offering tips for stress reduction, good nutrition, and more, in a supportive small-group environment.
When: Sat Mar 1 2014 (08:45 AM – 1:30 PM)
Where: Smith Center for Healing and the Arts, 1632 U St. NW, Washington, DC 20009
Fee? yes $30 and application
Contact: Adrienne Dern, (202) 483-8600
For more information: click here

The Cole Porter Project

The In Series
“A trip to the moon on gossamer wings,” says the song, as our swellegant party celebrates Cole Porter’s incomparable words-and-music. Come and revisit the work of an American master who defined the sophisticated soul of a complex era! Conceived and Directed by Steven Scott Mazzola and Greg Stevens Music Director: Paul Leavitt
When: Sat Mar 1 2014 (8:00 PM)
Where: SOURCE, 1835 14th St., NW, Washington, DC 20009
Fee? yes $38 general; $35 seniors;: $20 students and children
Volunteer Info: Usher, box office
Contact: Gregory Stuart, Executive Assistant, (202) 204-7765
For more information: click here

Sunday, March 02, 2014

The Cole Porter Project

The In Series
“A trip to the moon on gossamer wings,” says the song, as our swellegant party celebrates Cole Porter’s incomparable words-and-music. Come and revisit the work of an American master who defined the sophisticated soul of a complex era! Conceived and Directed by Steven Scott Mazzola and Greg Stevens Music Director: Paul Leavitt
When: Sun Mar 2 2014 (3:00 PM)
Where: SOURCE, 1835 14th St., NW, Washington, DC 20009
Fee? yes $38 general; $35 seniors;: $20 students and children
Volunteer Info: Usher, box office
Contact: Gregory Stuart, Executive Assistant, (202) 204-7765
For more information: click here

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Introduction to Rooftop Urban Agriculture

dc greenworks
With Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, learn about multiple approaches to growing food on rooftops through design and maintenance principles, and case studies drawn from across North America. This course: Familiarizes participants with the diversity of physical applications of urban agriculture and the growing technologies that apply. Explores the social, environmental and economic benefits of urban agriculture and rooftop farming. Describes the governance, personnel and economic options for implementing urban agriculture and rooftop farming systems and operations. Examines the conditions that lead to a successful urban agriculture project. Identifies strategies for overcoming common challenges associated with developing an urban agriculture/rooftop farming project. Describes basic installation and maintenance principles. Led by Ben Flanner, Head Farmer & Co-Founder, Brooklyn Grange and Peter Ensign, Executive Director of DC Greenworks
When: Tue Mar 4 2014 (09:00 AM – 12:30 PM)
Where: The George Washington University Marvin Center, 800 21st St. NW; Room 413/414, Washington, DC 20052
Fee? yes $175 for GRHC members; $199 for non-members. Includes 85-page course manual
Contact: Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, (416) 971-4494 ext 228
For more information: click here

Washington Bach Consort presents the FREE Noontime Cantata Series

Washington Bach Consort
Cantata: Herr, wie du willt, so schicks mit mir, BWV 73 Toccata in F# Minor (transcribed for organ), BWV 910 Organ Soloist: Jeremy Filsell A Washington DC tradition described by the Washingtonian as a “hidden gem,” the Noontime Cantata Series at Church of the Epiphany in downtown DC provides respite?from the busy workday and the stress of city life. Each fifty minute concert consists of a cantata and an organ piece introduced by J. Reilly Lewis and performed by orchestra, chorus and soloists.
When: Tue Mar 4 2014 (12:00 NOON)
Where: Church of the Epiphany, 1317 G Street, NW, Washington, District of Columbia 20005
Fee? no
Contact: Janet Mullany, (202) 429-2121
For more information: click here

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Whine/Wine Wednesday

DC Diaper Bank
Come join us Wednesday nights for Whine/Wine Wednesday! Bring your own “whine” or wine! Help us bundle diapers for the families we serve and make great new friends.
When: Wed Mar 5 2014 (6:30 PM – 8:30 PM)
Where: DC Diaper Bank Warehouse 8858 Monard Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Sorting and packing diapers; helping with other inventory
Contact: Corinne Cannon, (202) 656-8503

Raising a Bookworm

Reading Partners?
You are invited to join Reading Partners for a workshop for parents to learn how to support early readers. This workshop is ideal for parents with children ages zero to eight. Reading Partners’ staff of experienced educators will take participants through ten methods to support their children in reading. Register at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/raising-a-bookworm-strategies-to-support-early-readers-tickets-10052097093
When: Wed Mar 5 2014 (6:30 PM – 8:30 PM)
Where: St. Albans School Refectory, 3001 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20016
Fee? yes $50 Registration
Contact: Cielo Contreras, (202) 701-9110

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Lights, Camera, Fashion “First Dibs” Kickoff Party!

Stone Soup Films
We invite you to our “First Dibs” Kickoff Party for Stone Soup Films 2nd Annual Lights, Camera, Fashion Pop up Shop to be held on March 6th from 7-9:30 PM. The shop will be open on the 7th and 8th from 10-6 PM. We have collected dozens of racks worth of designer clothes from DC’s most stylish women. All proceeds go towards the production of promotional films for DC nonprofits. We encourage you to shop, sip, and snack your way to total happiness. Fill your closet while helping your community’s nonprofits. Visit http://bit.ly/1jXgbqW for more information and to purchase your “First Dibs” tickets!
When: Thu Mar 6 2014 (7:00 PM – 9:30 PM)
Where:??3330 Cadey’s Alley NW, Georgetown, DC 20007
Fee? yes $40 “First Dibs” Kickoff Party Tickets
Volunteer Info: We are in need of volunteers to help cashier, monitor dressing rooms and rehang clothing items. If you are interested in volunteering please email me, thanks!
Contact:??Megan Orr, (202) 337-1070
For more information: click here

Rethinking the “Impact Question”: Evaluating the (Nonprofit) Evaluators, Part IV

The following blog, written by Catalogue for Philanthropy President and Editor, Barbara Harman, was published in the Huffington Post on Monday, February 24th. It is the final post in a series on the “evaluation problem.”

In my previous post, I argued that metrics measure something, but not everything. Let’s take a look at what a basic, metrics-based “logic model” looks like (though note that Charity Navigator’s new model is much more extensive and challenging than the more streamlined model I am suggesting here):

Inputs (what you bring to the table as resources: staff, funds, expertise)
Activities (programs and services; what you do)
Outputs (things that can be measured — numbers of people you serve, units of housing you build, meals you provide, numbers of classes you conduct)
Outcomes (results — impact you have in the short, medium and long-term)

Good, but not good enough. For the model to be complete, it needs to begin with a description and analysis of the community in which you work and the specific challenges you face. If you want to know, at the end of the process, what impact really means, you first have to know, and state, what the conditions are in which your work takes place and out of which it emerges. Describing these is a complex task — sometimes even a moving target — that doesn’t easily lend itself to metrics.

In addition, how you assess your results will depend on what you value. If, at the end of the line, you are measuring something intangible like the resiliency or grit of vulnerable children who have grown up in poverty, you will have a greater challenge before you than will an organization seeking, say, to measure an increase in the rate of employment for job-seeking adults, where numbers are their friends. (This is not to say that the work is harder, only that the task of assessing the work is.) You have to make sure that you have identified grit and resiliency, and any other critical life skills, as core values, and you have to explain why they are.

As citizens and donors, we should do what we can to make sure that those organizations are working to build more creative communities, and to devise programs to deal with extremely challenging (if not, thus far, intractable) social problems, are not excluded because their outcomes are not as easy to measure as others. If I am visiting a community center in Washington, DC’s Ward 8 where the average family income is $9100 a year, I should not be looking at outcomes the same way I would if I were visiting a community where the somewhat better-off youngsters need a smaller boost in order to be successful. The hill is steeper in some places than it is in others, and we have to take that into account.

At the Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington, we have approached these questions in what is, given the direction that evaluation appears to be taking, a rather unusual way. We have gathered the community of professionals in the field — from foundations, corporate giving programs, peer nonprofits, government agencies and the philanthropic advisory community — and asked them to evaluate applicant nonprofits. Our review process has three stages: programmatic review (the conditions you address, the programs you have created, the impact you have); financial review (reasonable projections of income and expenses; diversified funding; transparency); and site visits (reviewers are asked to share their experience of previous visits, not to visit anew).

Some 120 individuals participate annually, sharing their expertise and direct knowledge. Communities have this knowledge, but it is rarely aggregated or shared with the public at large. We share it in our annual print catalogues and, of course, online, and we are able to do what the rating entities cannot do: actually evaluate need, program quality, and impact — without overburdening community-based nonprofits that, by and large, lack the resources to perform extensive evaluations themselves.

Creating communities of knowledge — actually pooling the know-how of people who have expertise in the field — seems like an obvious thing to do in the service of philanthropy, especially in an era in which knowledge-sharing has become so much easier. It means, too, that we can ask questions that don’t lend themselves to easy answers because we can use the brainpower of the community to identify the nonprofits that are doing the best work. There is no reason why this model could not be shared, and why there could not be a Catalogue for Philanthropy in every region of the country — something we hope to make happen in the not-too-distant future. (A note: the Catalogue focuses on community-based nonprofits with budgets below three million. These are not, by and large, the ones reviewed by Charity Navigator, though this is a category into which the great majority of all nonprofits falls.)

For the moment, though, nonprofits need to remember that — unless they are primarily reliant on the U.S. Government, in which case they had better pay attention to its model — most individual donors are not themselves professional givers. Many are driven more by their desire to give back, their personal passions, and their wish to make a difference and than they are by evidence-based impact assessments.

This does not mean that data and measurement do not matter or that a reasonable approach to evaluating impact should not be part of what foundations are funding and even teaching. But charities also need to find a way to assess their work in a manner that does justice to its complexity, and then translate what they learn into an account that will have meaning and power for individual donors whose contributions make up nearly three quarters of all donations. We should keep in mind that it is not just the good work we do that matters, but also the speaking and writing about it — the sharing of it — that counts. We need to train ourselves and teach others how to be agents of the imagination, ready and willing and equipped to tell compelling stories about the differences for the better that philanthropic work makes.

The task is a challenging, but essential, one. It needs more attention than it has received and I intend to address it in future posts.

Around Town 2/21-2/27

We are excited to see some warmer weather coming our way (at least for a little bit!) and to share these great nonprofit events with the DC community! If you end up at one of these, let us know and share your experiences with us on Twitter or Facebook!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Community Sing at Washington Revels

Washington Revels
This month we celebrate the legacy of Pete Seeger. All are welcome to bring a song to share! Children’s songs: 6:30-7:15 All Ages sing: 7:15-8pm
When: Fri Feb 21 2014 (6:30 PM – 8:00 PM)
Where: Washington Revels, 531 Dale Drive, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Fee? no
Contact: Kate McGhee, (301) 587-3835
For more information: click here

(Post) Valentine’s Day SWING Dance!

Joe’s Movement Emporium/World Arts Focus
Valentine’s Day has passed but the season of love is just getting started at Joe’s Movement Emporium. Join us this Friday for a Valentine’s Swing Dance! Your ticket gets you swing dance lessons, delicious desserts, and a complimentary glass of Love Potion No. 9 (alcohol-free and kid friendly)!
When: Fri Feb 21 2014 (7:00 PM – 10:00 PM)
Where: Joe’s Movement Emporium, 3309 Bunker Hill Road, Mount Rainier, MD 20712
Fee? yes $15 for individuals; $25 per couple
Volunteer Info: Set up, clean up, assist with food, bartenders
Contact: www.joesmovement.org, (301) 699-1819
For more information: click here

Atlas INTERSECTIONS – Opening Day

Atlas Performing Arts Center
INTERSECTIONS is the Atlas signature annual festival featuring over 700 artists in 125 performances that celebrate the energy and diversity of artists and audiences from DC and beyond. INTERSECTIONS’ 5th Anniversary schedule runs from February 21st – March 8th
When: Fri Feb 21 2014 (7:30 PM)
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center, 1333 H Street NE, Washington, DC 20002
Fee? yes see website for details & packages
Volunteer Info: The Atlas provides volunteers a pass for two complimentary tickets upon completing a 5-hour volunteer shift. Typical volunteer positions include: Volunteer ushers scan tickets, distribute programs, direct patrons to their seats, and complete a light clean-up of the theatre following each performance. Lobby greeters are responsible for opening doors, welcoming patrons, handling box office questions, and directing patrons. Saturday volunteers may help with arts activities for families. Positions available Friday, Saturday, Sunday: Contact Kevin Stapornkul, kstapornkul@atlasarts.org. ** We need help in our office in the weeks before INTERSECTIONS with administrative tasks (email ccarlin@atlasarts.org for details.)**
Contact:??Box Office, (202) 399-7993 ext 2
For more information: click here

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Seed Cleaning at Arlington Village

Earth Sangha
We will clean the seeds of native grass and forb species that we collected from local parks, every Saturday in January and February. (Except for February 15th) Our seed cleaning sessions during the winter months are a collaborative effort between the Earth Sangha and Arlington Regional Master Naturalist Group, but we will accept a limited number of students who study environmental science or biology/botany. The only reason for limiting the number of participants is entirely due to the space constraint, but the Arlington Village’s Meeting Room is quite large, and we hope to accommodate a larger group.
When: Sat Feb 22 2014 (10:00 AM – 1:00 PM)
Where: Arlington Village Condominium’s Meeting Room, See website for directions., Fairfax, VA 22032
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Clean native grass and forb species seeds.
Contact: Lisa Bright, (703) 764-4830
For more information: click here

Chopin, the Storyteller

National Philharmonic
Explore Chopin’s compelling works for the piano with Brian Ganz, who returns by popular demand with his fourth Chopin recital in his journey to perform all of the composer’s works. This concert features Chopin’s masterpiece of narrative and emotional power, the Ballade No. 4 in F minor, Op. 52; the Mazurka in A minor, Op. 17, No. 4, one of his most soulful and mysterious works; the epic Nocturne in C minor, Op. 48, No. 1; the tender and storied Waltz in A-flat Major, Op. 69, No. 1 (“L’Adieu”); as well as the highly dramatic Prelude in C-sharp minor, Op. 45. Ganz has been a prizewinner in the Queen Elisabeth of Belgium and the Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud (Paris) International Piano Competitions. There isn’t much about Chopin that Brian Ganz doesn’t know. The pianist has explored the nocturnes, the etudes, the sonatas and concertos and the rest in concerts, master classes and recordings for years now. His delight and wonder in this music seem to grow, apparently without bounds, as time goes on. (The Washington Post) Chopin 4 Mazurkas, Op. 17 2 Nocturnes, Op. 48 Ballade No. 4 in F minor, Op. 52 Variations brillantes, Op. 12
When: Sat Feb 22 2014 (8:00 PM)
Where: The Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda, MD 20852
Fee? yes $28-$55 (Kids Free)
Contact: Deborah Birnbaum, (301) 581-5
For more information: click here

The Cole Porter Project

The In Series
“A trip to the moon on gossamer wings,” says the song, as our swellegant party celebrates Cole Porter’s incomparable words-and-music. Come and revisit the work of an American master who defined the sophisticated soul of a complex era! Conceived and Directed by Steven Scott Mazzola and Greg Stevens Music Director: Paul Leavitt
When: Sat Feb 22 2014 (8:00 PM)
Where: SOURCE, 1835 14th St., NW, Washington, DC 20009
Fee? yes $38 general; $35 seniors;: $20 students and children
Volunteer Info: Usher, box office
Contact: Gregory Stuart, Executive Assistant, (202) 204-7765
For more information: click here

Sing Out for Shelter

Friendship Place
Looking to hear great live music AND support local organizations serving the homeless? Then the 22nd Annual “Sing Out for Shelter” A Cappella concert is the place for you! Performances by finalists on NBC’s “The Sing-Off”, the Tufts University Beelzebubs, the Princeton University Katzenjammers, Baltimore’s Some of the Parts, and, of course, the event hosts, DC’s Augmented 8! Proceeds benefit Christ House, Friendship Place, and Metropolitan House.
When: Sat Feb 22 2014 (8:00 PM)
Where: Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church, 3401 Nebraska Ave NW, Washington, DC 20016
Fee? yes $25 general admission; $10 students/seniors; free for children <12
Contact: Augmented 8, (202) 363-4900
For more information: click here

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Invasive Species Removal with Alan Ford

Earth Sangha
We will remove several species of invasive plants such as Wineberry, Amur honeysuckle, Wintercreeper, and Porcelainberry. Please wear long clothes and work boots as the work may be muddy and there are plenty of thorny plants present. Tools and gloves will be provided, but your own work gloves and hand-clippers are useful tools to bring. This event will be led by the president of VNPS Potowmack Chapter, Alan Ford.
When: Sun Feb 23 2014 (10:00 AM – 1:00 PM)
Where: Marie Butler Leven Preserve, 1501 Kirby Road, McLean Va 22101
Fee? no
Volunteer Info: Remove invasive species.
Contact: Alan Ford, (703) 732-5291
For more information: click here

The Cole Porter Project

The In Series
“A trip to the moon on gossamer wings,” says the song, as our swellegant party celebrates Cole Porter’s incomparable words-and-music. Come and revisit the work of an American master who defined the sophisticated soul of a complex era! Conceived and Directed by Steven Scott Mazzola and Greg Stevens Music Director: Paul Leavitt
When: Sun Feb 23 2014 (3:00 PM)
Where: SOURCE, 1835 14th St., NW, Washington, DC 20009
Fee? yes $38 general; $35 seniors;: $20 students and children
Volunteer Info: Usher, box office
Contact: Gregory Stuart, Executive Assistant, (202) 204-7765
For more information: click here

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

One Hour, One World Tour

Ayuda
If you would like to get a first person introduction to Ayuda’s work and learn how you could get involved, please join us for one of our frequent One Hour, One World tours. Please sign up for a time and feel free to bring friends. (Tours are conducted in English)
When: Wed Feb 26 2014 (6:00 PM – 7:00 PM)
Where: Ayuda DC office, 6925B Willow Street NW, Washington, DC 20012
Fee? no
Contact: Elise Webb, (202) 387-4848 ext 130
For more information: click here

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Empty Bowls

Our Daily Bread
Our popular Empty Bowls dinner gathering is always a heart-warming and family-friendly evening of great art, music, food and friendship — our largest fundraiser of the year. Your ticket includes selecting a one-of-a-kind soup bowl to take home, handcrafted by a local artist or community member. Hundreds of beautiful bowls to select from! Then join your neighbors in a simple meal of soup and bread as a symbolic reminder of those in our community who go hungry. All proceeds benefit local families facing financial crises – whose bowls and pantries are empty – so that they may be filled. Funds go directly to ODB’s programs to help our neighbors in need achieve financial stability.
When: Thu Feb 27 2014 (6:00 PM – 8:30 PM)
Where: Stacy C. Sherwood Center, 3740 Old Lee Hwy., Fairfax, VA 22030
Fee? yes $30 in advance ($35 at the door) includes handcrafted bowl and a simple meal of soup and bread to remind us of the struggles of our neighbors in need. Children are welcome! $10 for one child; $25 for three or more children
Volunteer Info: 2/26 — Flower Arranging (1pm – 3:30pm) 2/27 — Set Up (3:30-5:30); Clean Up (8:15-9:30) http://www.signupgenius.com/go/30E0C4AA4AC2EAB9-empty
Contact: Jennifer Rose, (703) 273-8829
For more information: click here