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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: March 2015

NYC Celebrates Upcoming Arrival of Royal Baby with “The Great British Baby Shower”

NEW YORK – 26 March 2015: More than 100 women will gather at the British Residence in New York this evening for The GREAT British Baby Shower, a charity event to celebrate the upcoming arrival of the second child of Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Hosted by the British Consulate General and the St. George’s Society of New York, the event will feature guest speaker Zanna Roberts Rassi, Senior Fashion Editor of Marie Claire and fashion correspondent for E! News and NBC’s TODAY. Zanna will talk about her journey to motherhood and how she balances family life with a career in media.

The event will raise funds for the St. George’s Society through a British-themed auction and will include a diaper drive in support of Baby Buggy®, a children’s charity which provides essential products and services to families in need across the US.

The GREAT British Baby Shower follows the exciting visit of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to New York City in December. During their visit, the royal couple lent their support to a number of charities helping disadvantaged young people.

Wife of the British Consul-General to New York Susan Lopez said, “As we look forward to the arrival of the second royal baby this spring, The GREAT British Baby Shower provides a wonderful opportunity to improve the lives of New York City’s families and children who are truly in need.”

CEO of St. George’s Society Karen Karpowich said, “St. George’s Society is dedicated to helping people in need, and this event is particularly relevant now because we recently assisted a British couple whose baby was born 11 weeks premature while they were visiting New York.”

Guests will enjoy a British-themed menu and have the opportunity to bid on auction items from leading British brands including Boden, Boots, Brora, Jo Malone, Joules, Katherine Hooker, Links of London, LUSH, Molton Brown, Phase Eight, Pink Lining, Pretty Polly, Reiss, Space NK, Ted Baker and Whistles. British luxury jewellery brand Links of London will provide gift bags at the event.

Napa Valley Vintners Gives Additional $1.8 Million to Help Children

Auction Napa Valley funds will assist nine local nonprofits in their mission to improve the lives of Napa County youth at critical stages of development

3/25/2015 – St. Helena, CA—The Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) trade association announced today an additional $1.8 million in grants from Auction Napa Valley proceeds to nine local nonprofits who help children. The organizations provide an array of services that foster academic achievement, provide teacher training, support mentoring and relationship building, offer parental education and inspire healthy behaviors and leadership development for youth.

Today’s announcement follows other recent investments by the NVV toward classroom-based programs and youth development, including: $2 million for construction of a new Boys & Girls Club and Community Center in American Canyon; $2 million for construction of a new Boys & Girls Club facility in Calistoga; and an additional $1 million for the NVV’s Early Learning Initiative established last year to ensure that every child in Napa County enters kindergarten ready to learn.

“The NVV’s strategic focus of funding youth-based programs for vulnerable populations through Auction Napa Valley proceeds is transformative for Napa County,” remarked Alissa Gentille, executive director of On the Move. “In providing critical opportunities for youth who are facing barriers of many sorts, the social return on investment in our children not only improves the quality of life for an individual child’s lifespan, but also strengthens the fabric of our community as a whole.”

The NVV also released today several “Stories of Impact” from individual children about how Auction Napa Valley funding is making a significant difference in their lives:

  • Laura graduated from high school because Napa CASA helped her build resiliency in navigating a dozen social workers and foster homes.
  • Lupita jumped from being a below average student to enrollment in three AP and college preparatory classes through guidance from On the Move’s Leadership Academy.
  • Antonio was the first member of his family to attend college because the Boys & Girls Club of St. Helena and Calistoga helped him make the transition from an unstable background to dramatically improving his grades and getting involved in school sports.

Additional stories can be found at

“Today’s announcement builds on the investments we’ve made recently to ensure a positive future for the youth of Napa County,” noted David Duncan, chair of the NVV’s Board of Directors and president and CEO of Silver Oak and Twomey Cellars. “We’re proud of our commitment to use Auction Napa Valley proceeds to help local children reach their full potential.”

The organizations funded in today’s announcement include:

  • Big Brothers, Big Sisters Of the North Bay
  • Boys & Girls Club of Napa Valley
  • Boys & Girls Club of St. Helena and Calistoga
  • CASA, A Voice for Children
  • Child Start, Inc.
  • Community Resources for Children
  • NapaLearns
  • On the Move
  • Summer Search North Bay

About the Napa Valley Vintners

The Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) nonprofit trade association has been cultivating excellence for 70 years by inspiring its 500 members to produce wines of the highest quality, to provide environmental leadership and to care for the extraordinary place they call home. Learn more at

About Auction Napa Valley

Auction Napa Valley is the NVV’s annual community fundraiser that for nearly 35 years has utilized the worldwide reputation of Napa Valley wines and the scenic beauty of the region to raise funds to enhance the health and wellbeing of the Napa Valley community. To date, the NVV has invested more than $145 million from Auction Napa Valley proceeds in Napa County nonprofit organizations. Learn more at

Nobel Laureates Advise Smarter Global Targets to 2030

Prioritizing 19 targets instead of the UN’s 169 targets is equivalent to doubling or quadrupling foreign aid

(For 26 March 2015) – In September, the world’s 193 governments will meet in New York to agree on a set of ambitious global targets for 2030, following the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) from 2000-2015. These targets will, from 2016-2030, direct an estimated $2.5 trillion in development assistance, as well as countless trillions in national budgets.

Unlike the effective MDGs, which just had 18 short targets, the UN’s current proposal contains a loquacious 169 targets. Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, President of the Copenhagen Consensus Center, says: “169 targets means the UN is promising everything to everyone. Having 169 priorities is like having none at all.”

Over the past 18 months, the Copenhagen Consensus Center has published 100+ peer-reviewed analyses from 82 of the world’s top economists and 44 sector experts along with many UN agencies and NGOs. These have established how effective 100+ targets would be in terms of value-for-money (click here for a graphical overview). These analyses take into account not just the economic, but also health, social and environmental benefits to the world.

An Expert Panel including two Nobel Laureates has reviewed this research and identified 19 targets that represent the best value-for-money in development over the period 2016 to 2030, offering more than $15 back on every aid dollar invested.

Reaching these global targets by 2030 will do more than $15 of good for every dollar spent:

Lower chronic child malnutrition by 40%
Halve malaria infection
Reduce tuberculosis deaths by 90%
Avoid 1.1 million HIV infections through circumcision
Cut early death from chronic diseases by 1/3
Reduce newborn mortality by 70%
Increase immunization to reduce child deaths by 25%
Make family planning available to everyone
Eliminate violence against women and girls
Phase out fossil fuel subsidies
Halve coral reef loss
Tax pollution damage from energy
Cut indoor air pollution by 20%
Reduce trade restrictions (full Doha)
Improve gender equality in ownership, business and politics
Boost agricultural yield increase by 40%
Increase girls’ education by 2 years
Achieve universal primary education in sub-Saharan Africa
Triple preschool in sub-Saharan Africa

“The expert analyses suggest that if the UN concentrates on 19 top targets, it can get $20 to $40 in social benefits per dollar spent, while allocating it evenly across all 169 targets would reduce the figure to less than $10. Being smart about spending could be better than doubling or quadrupling the aid budget,” comments Dr. Lomborg.

He says that the work of the economists “could be a game-changer for the UN’s negotiations over the coming months. While the 169 targets that are currently on the table are undoubtedly well-intentioned, some targets prove to generate much higher economic, social and environmental benefits than others. With limited resources, governments should forgo the instant gratification of promising everything to everyone, and instead prioritize the most effective development goals.”

Nobel Laureate economist Finn Kydland, Professor at University of California in Santa Barbara, says: “What made the MDGs so successful was their ability to galvanize international effort around a handful of smart, focused targets. It seems wise for us to continue this focus over the next 15 years, rather than spreading ourselves too thinly and slowing the remarkable progress we’ve already achieved.”

With regard to nutrition, one of the highest-ranked targets on the list, he continues: “Making sure young children are properly fed not only improves their wellbeing as they grow but has life-long implications for their health, intelligence and prosperity. Promising everything to everyone risks drawing attention away from clearly beneficial interventions such as this one.”

Nobel Laureate economist Tom Schelling, Professor at University of Maryland, comments: “Our list of targets will not solve all the world’s problems, but neither can any list under realistic budgets. Our list can help the UN make its choices like a savvy shopper with limited funds. Choosing great targets will vastly increase the benefits to people around the world, as well as generations to come.”

With regard to the recommendation to complete the Doha Round, he says: “If we’re serious about ending extreme poverty, there has to be genuine international commitment to lowering trade barriers. Much of the reason we reached the first MDG, halving extreme poverty, was because of China’s rapid income growth. And how did the Chinese achieve that remarkable feat? Most evidence suggests that international trade was a key ingredient.”

And Nancy Stokey, distinguished economist and Professor at University of Chicago, says: “Choosing the next set of global goals carefully, comparing the social benefits generated by spending resources various ways, can mean the difference between having a small effect and a large one.”

She continues, “It’s tempting to promise everything to everyone. But doing so means that we don’t focus on anything, and in the end we undertake a lot of mediocre projects.”

On gender goals, she argues: “There is not only a compelling moral argument, but also a strong economic one for boosting women’s involvement in politics, business and society. Allowing women greater control over their reproductive choices, reducing domestic violence and educating girls are clear first steps.”

A detailed version of the Expert Panel’s full conclusions can be accessed here.

All research papers can be accessed at

U.S. Bank Launches 2015 Financial Genius Scholarship

Applicants will complete online financial education as part of the program

MINNEAPOLIS, Mar 25, 2015 (BUSINESS WIRE)U.S. Bank, demonstrating its commitment to financial education, is offering current and prospective college students the opportunity to earn a $5,000 scholarship though the U.S. Bank Financial Genius Scholarship Program (#financialgenius). To participate, applicants are required to complete eight online learning modules that cover key concepts for building financial wellness.

“Financial education is essential in building healthy financial habits for life,” said Erica Opstad, vice president and head of financial education at U.S. Bank. “Last year, 15,000 students received critical financial education from U.S. Bank, and 99 percent said they felt ‘better prepared to make financial decisions.’”

The program will provide five students with $5,000 to use toward any eligible two- or four-year educational institution. U.S. Bank has provided more than $500,000 in scholarships over the past 19 years. By incorporating financial education into the scholarship process, U.S. Bank helps ensure students are successful both inside and outside of the classroom.

Students will complete online learning through Financial Genius for Life, which provides real-world skills and knowledge that everyone can benefit from through EverFi@Work, a self-paced, online learning platform that covers key concepts for building financial literacy. The 15-minute courses will train and motivate students to make positive financial decisions by teaching fundamentals such as: how a credit score is calculated; the basics of overdraft coverage; and how to avoid identity theft, pay for college, refinance their mortgage, or start a small business.

“I’ve benefited not only from the scholarship, but from the education I received in the process,” said Russell Jew, last year’s scholarship recipient. “It’s rare that you actually receive an education in the process of applying for a scholarship.”

Russell won the scholarship in his senior year of high school, and began taking classes at City College in San Francisco in the fall of 2014. He will earn his associate degree in May, making it possible to transfer to a four-year college sooner to pursue a major in chemical engineering.

“The scholarship has helped be focus on my studies rather than juggling my schoolwork along with a part time job,” he said.

The online application process is open until Sept. 17, 2015 with winners being announced in October. For more information or to apply visit or follow us on Twitter @usbank_news, #financialgenius.

Financial Genius is part of a year-long, multi-faceted program U.S. Bank is making available to college-age students through the U.S. Bank Student Union.

“The Student Union encompasses educational tools, interactive events, traditional and social media, thousands of student surveys and peer-to-peer feedback,” said Robyn Gilson, vice president of multicultural strategy at U.S. Bank. “We designed the program by listening to students. They feel uninformed on topics like credit, identity theft or investments, but are interested in learning. The potential for these students is truly unlimited, which is why we are committed to providing students with tools to improve their confidence and skills.”

About U.S. Bank

U.S. Bancorp USB, +0.67% with $403 billion in assets as of December 31, 2014, is the parent company of U.S. Bank National Association, the fifth largest commercial bank in the United States. The company operates 3,176 banking offices in 25 states and 5,022 ATMs and provides a comprehensive line of banking, brokerage, insurance, investment, mortgage, trust and payment services products to consumers, businesses and institutions. Visit U.S. Bancorp on the web at

Nonprofit Newsrooms Are A Good Bet for Philanthropy

Nonprofit news outlets are valuable assets to communities throughout the US.

Encino, California — Today, nonprofit news outlets are a growing primary source of serious journalism in the US. The Voice of San Diego, ProPublica Texas Tribune, The Center for Public Integrity, to name but a few, have become beacons of reliable journalism that the public has come to depend on for high-quality, investigative and public interest journalism and analysis. The nonprofit newsroom is going to become an even stronger force in 21st Century media, and it relies on philanthropy to keep it growing, particularly in the formative stages of the start-up business cycle.

The Institute for Nonprofit News (INN), which only days ago changed its name from the Investigative News Network, is the only organization exclusively designed to provide training and services to nonprofit media outlets. Kevin Davis, CEO and Executive Director of INN says that philanthropy plays a vital role in nonprofit news—and that nonprofit news is crucial to many philanthropic missions.

“Nonprofit news has enjoyed critical financial support from philanthropic organizations, but it’s important to realize that it is a symbiotic relationship. Quality, in-depth journalism and data bring new insights and necessary focus to many of the civic and social missions in which philanthropy invests. Nonprofit news organizations provide benefit directly to the communities and people they serve in both the short and long term,” says Davis.

Kevin Davis is available for interview.


Kevin Davis is CEO and Executive Director of the Institute for Nonprofit News (formerly known as the Investigative News Network), a growing consortium of more than 100 nonprofit newsrooms producing investigative and public interest journalism. Davis oversees INN’s efforts to promote the sustainability of its member organizations, share best-practices and increase the impact of their reporting. He is a frequent speaker on entrepreneurial journalism and a regular contributor to the CrowdCheck column at



Innovairre Communications Expands its International Footprint by Forming a Strategic Partnership with IQR Consulting to Serve India

Entry into India, Innovairre’s 28th country, enables the company to leverage its proven fundraising solutions and support the urgent needs of the world’s second most populated nation.

PENNSAUKEN, NJ – March 24, 2015Innovairre Communications, a world leader in fundraising, formally announced a partnership with IQR Consulting, the 6-year-old data analytics/data services and marketing firm from Western India. The strategic partnership follows up on Innovairre’s commitment to growth by delivering new, advanced fundraising solutions.

Since forming Innovairre in December 2014, the company has introduced four new data/technology-driven products to the marketplace: Innovairre MC, a fully-integrated, cloud-based fundraising platform; Donor2, the marketplace’s first turnkey donor retention solution; Social Synchronization, a data-driven targeting solution that synchronizes offline marketing with social media activity; and e-Receipts, an omni-channel marketing automation solution that enhances donor engagement.

Beyond its commitment to data/technology-driven solutions, the partnership to enter the Indian market supports Innovairre’s commitment to international expansion. Don McKenzie, Innovairre President & CGO, stated, “The company has been methodical in our global expansion, starting with North America, expanding to Western Europe, and now we’re focused on emerging markets that have large, growing, philanthropically-minded middle-class populations and important social needs. Recently we entered Brazil, and that foray has been extremely successful. India, with its population of 1.3 billion and many important issues, was the next logical market for us.”

Rahul Nawab, CEO of IQR Consulting, indicated, “Innovairre’s fundraising expertise and comprehensive solution set is particularly well-matched with our evolving needs in India. We’re also confident IQR’s unmatched data and analytical strength in India will enable us to expand quickly, improving the lives of millions of Indians. We are overjoyed that Innovairre chose IQR Consulting as its strategic partner in India.”

Innovairre’s Indian entry is also part of Innovairre’s Asian expansion plans. The company has maintained a sophisticated manufacturing capability in China during the past 20 years, with three locations and one million sq. ft. of production, design, and service capabilities. Innovairre is also now exploring opportunities in other Asian markets.

About Innovairre Communications

Innovairre is the worldwide leader in fundraising, supporting agencies and nonprofit organizations. Innovairre services more than 500 charities, with 4000+ employees, working across five continents. Innovairre leverages a scientific marketing approach, including advanced data analytics and insights; progressive digital marketing; leading-edge technologies; a proven creative and testing methodology; and unsurpassed capabilities in direct mail development, digital printing, and premiums for the nonprofit sector. Innovairre also supports many leading commercial companies and has specialized expertise in the financial, insurance, healthcare, publishing, and retail categories. For more on Innovairre, visit, or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn @Innovairre.

About IQR Consulting

Established in 2009, IQR Consulting offers integrated, quality-driven solutions for its clients. The international company delivers real results through data analytics, product strategy, and reporting solutions to help clients obtain bottom-line results with a much-needed competitive edge. The analysts at IQR are experts in the use of segmentation as a means for highly targeted marketing. With accurate and actionable insights and analysis, IQR is helping credit unions, banks, and casinos leverage data assets to increase profitability and better compete against larger institutions. IQR’s rapidly-expanding client base includes Fortune 500 companies and is a testament to its success providing workable, strategic solutions to difficult problems. For more information, visit, and follow us on Twitter @data_analysts.

Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation Names KPMG’s Laura Hay to National Board of Governors

New York – The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) has named Laura Hay, National Sector Leader for Insurance at KPMG, to its National Board of Governors.

Ms. Hay is a 30-year veteran of the insurance industry and serves on KPMG’s Americas Board of Directors as well as on the board of the KPMG Foundation. In her role as National Section Leader for Insurance, she leads a team of more than 2,000 professionals across the Americas in audit, advisory, and tax services for the property & casualty, life, and reinsurance industries. She is an active participant in multiple diversity networks at the company, including the KPMG National Organization for Women and as a proactive straight ally the Pride/LGBT network. Ms. Hay was named to Consulting Magazine’s “Women Leaders in Consulting List” in 2012.

“By virtue of her decades of service to the insurance industry, commitment to diversity, and tremendous leadership at KPMG, Ms. Hay brings a truly unique perspective to our National Board of Governors,” said Bill Ross, CEO of IICF. “Her trusted council and insight makes her an ideal addition to IICF’s leadership team as we seek to continue furthering our outreach to communities, nonprofit organizations, and families across the United States.”

Prior to her current role, Ms. Hay was the National Industry Director of KPMG’s Life Insurance segment and the National Leader of the Actuarial Services practice. Before joining KPMG in 1993, she spent eight years at MetLife, where she had numerous roles as part of the actuarial student program. She is a fellow of the Society of Actuaries and a member of the American Academy of Actuaries.

Ms. Hay will be a featured speaker at IICF’s Women in Insurance Global Conference, which will be taking place in New York from June 17-19. For more information on the conference, visit:

The IICF National Board of Governors is responsible for managing the organization’s national endowment fund, as well as establishing overarching strategy and plans throughout the IICF’s national and regional footprints. Comprised of 23 senior leaders from across the insurance industry, the board is chaired by Gary Petrosino of Chubb & Son. A full list of National Board members can be found at:

About the Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation

The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation was established in 1994 and is completely directed and funded by the insurance industry. The foundation helps communities and enriches lives by uniting the collective strengths of the industry to provide grants, volunteer service and leadership. Since its inception in 1994, IICF has contributed more than $23.5 million in grants to charities and nearly 200,000 volunteer hours to hundreds of community nonprofit organizations. IICF is a registered not-for-profit organization under section 501(c)(3) of the IRS code. Learn more at about the IICF at

The National WWII Museum Receives Major Individual Donation to Help Complete Expansion

Museum’s Largest Private Donor Issues Challenge for Support

NEW ORLEANS (March 24, 2015) – The National WWII Museum today received an individual gift of $20 million from longtime advocate and former Board Chairman Boysie Bollinger. Ranking among the top donations in the country to a non-profit organization or Museum, this is the largest private gift ever received by the Museum.

The $20 million donation will be used to add an iconic architectural piece to the Museum’s New Orleans campus, the Canopy of Peace, which Bollinger calls “the finishing touch” to the Museum’s expansion. The Canopy will symbolize the hope and promise unleashed by the end of World War II hostilities. Commanding attention on the New Orleans skyline, the 150-foot-tall structure will also unify the Museum’s diverse campus in the enduring spirit of the wartime slogan, “We’re all in this together!”

“I’ve always said that we are going to build a world-class museum,” said Bollinger. “Stephen Ambrose convinced me that this Museum was going to last for generations. My attitude is that we are going to take a little longer (to complete the campus) but we are going to do it right, and we’re going to build it to last.”

Boysie Bollinger first became involved with The National D-Day Museum twenty years ago, and remains tireless in helping to develop the six-acre campus of the Congressionally-designated institution. In his work on the Museum’s Board of Trustees, Bollinger has lobbied government officials, potential donors, friends, and anyone who will listen to support the Museum, and today, he leads by example with his own donation.

But Bollinger, who cites humility as the quality he most admires in World War II veterans, is not looking to hold onto the top spot for long. “I would hope somebody loves it a little bit more than me – or a lot more than me – and wants to become the largest donor. I think it’s going to raise the bar. I don’t need to stay there. I’d very much appreciate it if somebody beats me.”

A portion of the historic donation will also go into the Museum endowment, a step Bollinger noted as significant to the institution’s future. The endowment guarantees the Museum will always have a steady source of funds to support the growing campus. Bollinger, a key player in the Museum’s leadership through critical phases, has always understood the importance of expanding the institution’s campus and its reach, and his donation will guarantee the Museum can continue on this essential path.

Additionally, a reference to Bollinger’s name will go on the Museum’s existing Stage Door Canteen, a 1940s-style entertainment space that serves as a living exhibit for music of the war era. The space will now be called BB’s Stage Door Canteen. “BB is what my grandkids call me,” said Bollinger. Noting that he doesn’t want his name in lights, Bollinger adds, “Some people will never know that’s me, but those who are important to me will know. It’s very personal.”

Bollinger’s remarkable career in shipbuilding and his bold reputation as an entrepreneur often prompt comparisons to a famous WWII-era boat builder, Andrew Jackson Higgins. Higgins Industries in New Orleans took the lead in producing thousands of the flat-bottomed landing craft that made it possible for Allied forces to successfully invade enemy-held beaches in Europe, North Africa and across the Pacific. As Dwight Eisenhower once told historian Stephen Ambrose, who would become the Museum’s founder, Higgins was “the man who won the war.” It is because of Higgins that the Museum is located in New Orleans, and it is largely because of Bollinger that it became a reality. Now he will put his name on a finishing piece of the campus.

“I am inspired by the extraordinary generosity of Boysie Bollinger,” said Gordon H. “Nick” Mueller, Museum president and CEO. “Boysie’s passion has grown deeper since his early involvement with the Museum. He truly understands the importance of sharing the story of America’s sacrifice for freedom, and he’s helping to ensure the Museum continues to evolve on a national level. His determination is exhilarating.”

When first approached about getting involved with the Museum, Bollinger was told “It won’t take you any time and it won’t cost you any money.” All these years later, Boysie knows better. He believes his work with the Museum will be central to his life’s legacy. “I’ve got a lot of time invested in this Museum, going back 20 years, and it’s time we finish it,” said Bollinger. “And I hope this is the gift that helps make that happen.”

Featuring a top piece stretching 448 feet by 126 feet, the Canopy of Peace is scheduled for completion in 2017. In December 2015, the Museum will launch Road to Tokyo: Pacific Theater Galleries, which will complete the newly constructed Campaigns of Courage pavilion. The exhibition hall will trace the path that led from Pearl Harbor to Tokyo Bay, examining the logistical challenges, fierce battles and range of extreme conditions that confronted troops in this vast theater of war. Throughout the galleries, artifacts will connect visitors to the intense struggle, including uniforms, personal effects and an authentic restored P-40 Warhawk – bearing the distinctive markings of the Flying Tigers. A new exhibit on the Merchant Marine is also scheduled for completion in December.

About The National WWII Museum

The National WWII Museum tells the story of the American experience in the war that changed the world – why it was fought, how it was won, and what it means today. Dedicated in 2000 as The National D-Day Museum and now designated by Congress as America’s National WWII Museum, it celebrates the American Spirit, the teamwork, optimism, courage and sacrifice of the men and women who served on the battlefront and the Home Front. For more information, call 877-813-3329 or 504-528-1944 or visit

Urban Institute Completes Independent Evaluation of 100,000 Homes Campaign

“Campaign made major impact on national efforts to end homelessness”

March 24, 2015 — An independent report from the Urban Institute has concluded that the 100,000 Homes Campaign made a “major impact on the national fight to end homelessness.” The report also found that communities that adopted the Campaign’s core interventions experienced greater reductions in homelessness than their peers. Built around an ambitious national goal (100,000 people housed) and a public deadline (July 2014), the national movement, coordinated by Community Solutions, ended last July after helping 186 US communities house 105,580 medically vulnerable and chronically homeless Americans in just four years.

“The urgency and enthusiasm the Campaign generated was palpable,” said Josh Leopold, Research Associate at the Urban Institute and co-author of the report. “A single, shared goal and rigorous performance measurement focused the attention of people and systems around the country. Participating communities saw a significant increase in the rate at which they secured permanent housing for vulnerable, homeless residents. They also saw greater reductions in homelessness among key groups than non-participating communities.”

To assess the Campaign’s impact, the Urban Institute drew on monthly housing performance data from participating communities, surveys with community leaders, national data on homelessness reported annually to HUD, and interviews with Campaign staff, partners and funders.

The report found that communities participating in the Campaign achieved greater reductions in unsheltered, veteran and chronic homelessness than non-participating communities. Over the life of the Campaign, the average community saw a 262 percent increase in the portion of its homeless neighbors housed each month. A majority reported that the Campaign helped them prioritize medically vulnerable and chronically homeless people for limited housing and service resources, rather than distributing these resources on a traditional first-come-first-served basis. Additionally, more than one third of communities said that participation in the Campaign helped them secure new financial resources to end homelessness.

Several of the Campaign’s core strategies were associated with greater reductions in homelessness, including:

  • Transparent, monthly tracking and reporting
    • Communities that publicly tracked the number of people moving into housing each month against predetermined monthly targets on the Campaign’s website saw significantly greater reductions in homelessness than communities that neglected this measurement-based approach.
  • Registry weeks
    • Communities that completed a registry week, in which volunteers canvass local streets after dark to survey and document every person experiencing homelessness by-name, saw chronic homelessness decline by 26 percent, while those who did not complete registry weeks saw reductions of only one percent.

The report’s lessons are significant and timely as communities across the country strive to meet the federal goal of ending veteran homelessness by the end of 2015 and then push on to end chronic homelessness soon after. The Campaign’s success demonstrates how a variety of disparate and overlapping entities can work together to achieve that goal.

In January, Community Solutions launched a follow-on to the 100,000 Homes Campaign, called Zero: 2016, to help 71 communities end veteran homelessness this year and end chronic homelessness by the end of next year. That same month, New Orleans, a 100,000 Homes Campaign and Zero: 2016 participant, became the first major city in America to end veteran homelessness, proving that such a goal is possible. Community Solutions is also working with groups in Canada, Australia and Western Europe to help launch campaign-style interventions to end homelessness in those regions.

“This report couldn’t come at a better time,” said Beth Sandor, Director of Zero: 2016 for Community Solutions. “It confirms clear, actionable steps that communities can take as they work to end veteran and chronic homelessness in the next two years. Those steps include knowing everyone on your streets by name, prioritizing the most chronic and vulnerable for immediate housing help, and tracking your monthly housing performance against clear goals.”

The report was commissioned by Community Solutions and made possible by grants from the Melville Charitable Trust and the Paul and Phyllis Fireman Charitable Foundation.

Lecture by Former Commissioner of Reclamation to Call for Restoring Colorado River

Salt Lake City — On Wednesday April 1st at 7:30 PM, former Commissioner of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation Dan Beard will give a lecture at the Dumke Auditorium in the University of Utah Museum of Fine Arts based on his new book Deadbeat Dams: Why We Should Abolish the Bureau of Reclamation and Tear Down Glen Canyon Dam.

Drawing on a career of more than three decades of government service, Beard will discuss the urgent need to change western water policies. His goal is to inform and activate the public about failed federal water policies that lack common sense, are corrupted by special interests, and have wasted billions of dollars of taxpayers’ money. He will not only detail the faults of the present system of federally subsidized water management, but he will also recommend a visionary agenda for the future that can inspire a new generation of water reformers.

Regarding dam construction in America, Beard states bluntly in Deadbeat Dams, “The decision to build a dam isn’t a scientific decision or an economic one. It is, pure and simple, a political decision.”

Beard has been a forceful advocate for water policy reform for nearly four decades. His extensive experience in the government and private sectors include serving as Chief Administrative Officer of the U.S. House of Representatives, Commissioner of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, and Staff Director of the U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Natural Resources and the Subcommittee on Water and Power.

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., President of the Waterkeeper Alliance, has called Deadbeat Dams, “a courageous book and much needed…. Dams kill rivers – Deadbeat Damsrestores rivers and our hope for a sustainable future.”

In addition to speaking at the University of Utah, Dan Beard will also be speaking at Utah State University at 4:00 PM on March 30th, and will hold a book reading and signing at Ken Sanders Rare Books on March 31st at 7:00 PM. Mr. Beard will be the featured guest at a fundraising dinner for Glen Canyon Institute, at the University of Utah Museum of Fine Arts Café at 6:00 on April 1st.

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