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Pro Bono Perspectives
32 minutes | 4 days ago
The Existential Crisis We Need
Vu Le of the NonprofitAF blog and formerly Rainer Valley Corps joins host Danielle Holly for the Season 3 premiere of Pro Bono Perspectives. Recorded the day after the violent insurrection on the Capitol, Vu and Danielle discuss how the nonprofit sector can and must be bolder in responding to injustices like this. Philanthropy has become the white moderate Martin Luther King, Jr. famously warned us about in his “Letter From a Birmingham Jail,” and we must get out of our own way if we are to address the true roots of systemic inequity, not just the symptoms. An expert in nonprofit capacity building, Vu explains that while necessary and widely underfunded, capacity building has actually been harming – not helping – many organizations, especially those that are BIPOC-led. It’s time for an existential crisis in philanthropy, Vu declares. Time to reject harmful funding practices and flawed approaches to capacity building. Time to move beyond sharing power to releasing it so that underrepresented and marginalized groups can take the helm and lead in creating transformational change. For more of Vu's words of wisdom on the nonprofit sector, philanthropy, and CSR, visit his blog, NonprofitAF.com.
24 minutes | a month ago
Reflections on a Challenging, Clarifying, Transformative Year
"There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” Leonard Cohen’s famous words were a source of comfort for host Danielle Holly – and many of us in the social impact field – during this difficult year. In our Season 2 finale, Danielle reflects on the challenging moments we lived through, from COVID-19 to a divisive election to the brutal murders of Black Americans and racial justice reckoning that followed. Danielle highlights some of the most moving experiences and advice our guests shared in 2020 and why she is optimistic for the new year, one that we hope sees more resilient, equitable, and connected communities than ever before. Featured in this episode are clips from episodes with Natalye Paquin, Points of Light; Ngozi Okaro, Custom Collaborative; Tom Crohan, John Hancock; Chris Tyson, Build Baton Rouge; Edgar Villanueva, Schott Foundation; and Gregg Betheil, PENCIL.
41 minutes | a month ago
Cross-Sector Collaboration for Racial Justice
Tom Crohan, Vice President & Counsel, Corporate Responsibility & Government Relations at John Hancock, joins host Danielle Holly to talk Skills for Cities and John Hancock’s response to COVID-19, racial injustice, and social inequity. John Hancock co-hosted this year’s Skills for Cities day of cross-sector collaboration aimed at supporting racial justice and BIPOC-led nonprofits amidst the dual pandemic of racism and COVID-19. Having participated in Skills for Cities as a volunteer himself, Tom comments on the diversity of backgrounds and location the virtual environment enabled, as well as how the diversity of thought at the table made it an even more powerful instance of combining strengths to do good for communities in need. Tom and Danielle discuss the urgency in addressing not just COVID-19, but racial justice and systemic social issues too, and the need to maintain that momentum. He shares how John Hancock doubled down on its MLK Scholars program to connect Boston teens with jobs in the nonprofit sector and how they and their partners made it work virtually so young people could still have access to important opportunities to succeed during this difficult time. Tom and Danielle also discuss more broadly the strain COVID-19 has put on the nonprofit sector, the imbalanced “K-shaped” recovery we’re already seeing, and the importance of humility, balanced power dynamics, and true collaboration in order to achieve the impact all sectors want to see. To learn more about John Hancock’s services, CSR initiatives, and community engagement programs, visit johnhancock.com/index.html.
26 minutes | 2 months ago
Innovation & People-Centered Design for a More Just Tomorrow
Shalu Umapathy, Managing Director of New Ventures at IDEO.org, shares how her organization creates a more just and inclusive world through people-centered design. As the nonprofit arm of the innovation and design firm by the same name, IDEO.org partners with organizations to pioneer new ways of working and builds tools that help millions of people learn and practice human-centered design. Shalu explores what innovation means in the nonprofit sector in the context of COVID-19, how to make it stick in the long term, and how her team sees it as a path toward diversity, equity, and inclusion. Visit IDEO.org to learn more about people-centered design and their philanthropic and humanitarian work.
41 minutes | 2 months ago
Decolonizing Wealth: Equity in Philanthropy and Beyond
Edgar Villanueva is a Senior Vice President at the Schott Foundation and the award-winning author of Decolonizing Wealth, a bestselling book offering hopeful and compelling alternatives to the dynamics of colonization in the philanthropic and social finance sectors. Edgar was named a 2020 Atlantic Fellow for Racial Equity and is a member of the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina. In this episode, Edgar unpacks the phrase “decolonizing wealth” on a macro level and as it applies to philanthropy specifically. He addresses several important critiques of philanthropy head on, such as the common disconnects between missions and where money actually goes, low endowment payouts, reluctance to embrace unrestricted funding models, and dominant white culture crowding out diverse ideas and experiences. Edgar’s return to Indigenous values and wisdom now guides his career, which is dedicated to leveraging philanthropy to do transformative work, end racial inequity and injustice, and spread truth. To learn more about Edgar’s work, visit schottfoundation.org and decolonizingwealth.com.
32 minutes | 3 months ago
Building Equitable, Resilient, and Prosperous Cities
Chris Tyson, President & CEO of Build Baton Rouge, joins host Danielle Holly to share about the redevelopment authority’s mission to bring together people and resources to promote equitable investment, innovative development, and thriving communities across Baton Rouge. Like many places, Baton Rouge is a tale of two cities, marked by economic disparity and racial and spatial stratification as the result of decades of race-based housing and transportation policy. Chris explains why a lens of equity and a deep understanding of the community are essential for overcoming the consequences of these discriminatory policies and enabling communities to succeed. Skills-based volunteering and capacity building are also crucial in the fight for equity, something Chris experienced firsthand when Build Baton Rouge partnered with JPMorgan Chase on a pro bono project that contributed toward the revitalization of Plank Road, one of the city’s most blighted commercial corridors. To learn more about Chris’s organization, equitable urban planning, and community development, visit buildbatonrouge.org.
26 minutes | 3 months ago
DEI for a New Era of Social & Racial Justice
Wendy John, the new Head of Global Diversity & Inclusion at Fidelity Investments, joins host Danielle Holly to discuss the rapid growth in corporate DEI positions in the past several years and the added urgency these programs have taken on in 2020. Wendy explains why DEI is a necessity – not a “nice to have,” the challenges and opportunities her work presents, and the ways in which Fidelity has enhanced its social impact work, like expanding its Impact Week skills-based volunteering initiative and dedicating it to supporting racial justice and BIPOC-led nonprofits. Wendy also reflects on the 10th anniversary of Fidelity’s Aspire employee resource group (ERG) for Black and Latinx employees and how the company created an environment that fostered it to grow from a group of just 50 to 5,000 strong. To learn more about Fidelity, its DEI work, and Impact Week, visit fidelity.com.
31 minutes | 4 months ago
Fashioning a Pathway to Success and Equity
Custom Collaborative Executive Director Ngozi Okaro joins Danielle Holly to discuss nonprofit management during times of crisis. Earlier this year when COVID-19 first hit New York, Custom Collaborative, a workforce development nonprofit that prepares women from immigrant and low-income communities for careers in fashion, partnered with Common Impact and S&P Global for a skills-based volunteering project. Ngozi tells the story of this collaboration, how she made the time and space to focus on capacity-building, and how Custom Collaborative successfully pivoted its fashion industry trainings and career readiness programs to virtual when the pandemic began. To learn more, visit customcollaborative.org.
43 minutes | 4 months ago
Closing the Digital Divide in Education
Dana Castro, HP’s Worldwide Education Manager, and Justin van Fleet, Executive Director of GBC-Education, join us as we continue our exploration of the digital divide and education equity. We're in the midst of a back-to-school season where many children - over 17 million(!) - can't even participate in the new virtual education environment due to lack of access to computers or sufficient Internet. Hear Dana and Justin share how HP and GBC-Education are combining their talents and resources to ensure all children have access to quality education, plus how other companies, nonprofits, and public sector institutions can be part of the movement to close the digital divide. Visit hp.com/us/en and gbc-education.org to learn more.
29 minutes | 5 months ago
Back-to-School – For Some: Virtual Education and the Deepening Digital Divide
Gregg Betheil is President of PENCIL, a NYC-based education nonprofit that brings together business partners and educators to develop strategies that disrupt current college and career readiness outcomes and help public school students succeed. Gregg joins host Danielle Holly for a conversation on back-to-school amidst the continuing pandemic, virtual education, and the deepening digital divide that is preventing millions of students from continuing their schooling. Gregg shares how PENCIL is stepping up to ensure NYC public school students have the opportunities they need to succeed, how the organization pivoted to virtual when COVID-19 first closed schools and office buildings, and what the future of education may hold, both in the next few months and after the pandemic has passed. Visit pencil.org to learn more.
36 minutes | 5 months ago
The Case for Optimism during COVID-19
Ami Dar is the Founder & Executive Director of Idealist.org, the top resource for finding jobs, internships, and volunteer opportunities with nonprofit organizations. In this episode, Ami joins host Danielle Holly for a conversation on how COVID-19 has impacted the private and social sectors – and why not everything should go back to the way it was. From more flexible hiring processes and work environments to more inclusive conferences and less business travel and pollution, work culture is evolving, and it’s giving us hope for the future. Hear how Idealist has embraced change not only this year but throughout its 25-year history, plus insights on nonprofit hiring and volunteerism since March. Visit idealist.org for nonprofit job openings, volunteer opportunities, and more ways to do good in your community.
35 minutes | 5 months ago
How COVID-19 is Hurting Working Women
Host Danielle Holly is joined by Balaji Ganapathy, Global Head of Corporate Social Responsibility and Chief Social Responsibility Officer at Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), one of the largest technology firms in the world. Balaji works at the intersection of technology and social impact with a special focus on impacting women and girls, minorities and other underrepresented groups. He and Danielle discuss the impact of COVID-19 on women in the workforce, the future of CSR in the context of current economic downturn and how TCS's volunteering and mentoring programs are helping young people of all backgrounds build careers in technology. To learn more about Tata Consultancy Services, visit tcs.com/worldwide.
44 minutes | 6 months ago
Fighting Harmful Paradigms in the Nonprofit Sector
Antony Bugg-Levine, CEO of the Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF), joins host Danielle Holly to discuss the fundamental improvements that need to be made to how money is given and used in the social sector. NFF believes in the power of improved access to capital and credit to help overcome the systemic financial challenges nonprofits face, which disproportionately affect communities of color. Antony shares how NFF makes this a reality through loans and advocacy work, as well as how the organization is guiding nonprofits through the COVID-19 economic crisis. To learn more about social sector funding and the Nonprofit Finance Fund's work, visit nff.org.
39 minutes | 6 months ago
What Drives Young People to Act on Social Issues?
Derrick Feldmann, Managing Director of Ad Council Edge and INFLUENCE|SG, has devoted his career to unpacking why and how young people choose to engage with social issues, as well as how the topics they care about influence companies’ CSR and marketing strategies. Listen as he and host Danielle Holly discuss what’s in store for brand engagement in social issues in the context of COVID-19 and how to tell when a company is authentically supporting a cause versus what’s just “good marketing.” To learn more about Derrick’s work, visit adcouncil.org/the-edge or causeandsocialinfluence.com where you’ll find data on youth activism, including a three-part research series on young Americans’ actions related to COVID-19. Look out for Derrick’s brand-new book, The Corporate Social Mind, out now!
31 minutes | 7 months ago
Unexpected Benefits of Skills-Based Volunteering
Google.org Director of Global Employee Programs Lacy Caruthers joins Danielle Holly to share how her organization leverages funding, technology, products and expertise to support under-served communities and solve humanity's biggest challenges. In the wake of recent injustices against Black Americans and the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, Google.org has stepped up its already impressive philanthropy work, committing tens of millions of dollars in additional funding to racial justice and equity organizations and to COVID-19 aid. Google.org has also committed 50,000 pro bono hours to nonprofit and civic partners addressing issues across health and science, economic relief and recovery and the digital divide in education. Many of these pro bono hours will be completed via Google.org's fellowship program, which grants employees the opportunity to work full-time with nonprofit and civic partners for up to six months. To learn more about Lacy’s work using technology and employees' skills to affect social change, visit Google.org.
27 minutes | 7 months ago
Serving Our Communities in Times of Crisis
Points of Light President & CEO Natalye Paquin joins host Danielle Holly for a conversation on the importance of civic engagement and volunteerism in improving our communities, especially in crises like COVID-19. Natalye shares how this sentiment prompted her team to make this year’s Points of Light Conference fully complimentary so anyone can benefit from its teachings and opportunities for new connections. She also provides her insights on leadership, investing in your people and what it’s like to lead in this time of mass protests against racial injustice and systemic inequality. To learn more about Points of Light, including the conference, civic engagement and volunteering, visit pointsoflight.org.
29 minutes | 7 months ago
How to Donate Effectively in a Disaster
Danielle Holly is joined by Jim Alvey, Director of Partnerships at Good360, for a conversation on disaster relief, COVID-19 and the importance of needs-based donations – giving the right product at the right time to serve people effectively. Good360 is a “matchmaker” of in-kind products that connects companies with unused or excess products to nonprofits that need them in order to respond to disasters in their communities. June is the unofficial start of storm season, a time when natural disasters create a high demand for in-kind donations. This season is expected to be especially difficult as we continue to cope with and recover from COVID-19 at the same time. Jim talks about this and other challenges COVID-19 has posed for Good360, as well as how the organization and its corporate and nonprofit partners have risen to the occasion, delivering PPE and other vital supplies to those in need. To learn more about Good360’s disaster relief work and COVID-19 response, visit good360.org
25 minutes | 8 months ago
Breaking the Stigma: Mental Health in the Age of COVID-19
In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month, Chris Ide, Vice President of Corporate & Community Partnerships at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) Foundation, joins Danielle Holly for a candid conversation on mental health during COVID-19. CAMH is Canada's largest mental health teaching hospital and one of the world's leading research centers in its field. The Foundation drives change for mental health by inspiring philanthropy that enables leading-edge care, research and education. COVID-19 has exacerbated the mental health crisis the world was already experiencing. Chris explains how CAMH has responded by stepping up its services, creating a free mental health resource hub and its “Apart, Not Alone” campaign to promote social interaction during isolation. CAMH has also partnered with Cisco to significantly increase its telehealth offerings so patients can continue to access mental health care during quarantine. To learn more about the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and the Foundation, including services, COVID-19 resources, research and education, visit camh.ca.
26 minutes | 8 months ago
Addressing Autism Today
In early March, before COVID-19 transformed daily life here in the U.S., host Danielle Holly sat down with Nick Savarese, Executive Director of the Flutie Foundation, to discuss autism, nonprofit leadership, cross-sector partnerships, talent retention and purpose, all of which are still very much relevant today. Nick recounts how a volunteer experience in his early twenties - one that he almost skipped - launched him on a career path in the nonprofit sector that would eventually lead him to his current role at the Flutie Foundation. The foundation is dedicated to improving quality of life for individuals and families affected by autism by providing a path for education or employment, opportunities for physical and social activity and the tools to be safe, supported and informed at all times. Nick and Danielle also discuss nonprofit leadership and talent retention in the age of purpose over profit. To learn more about the Flutie Foundation and autism, visit flutiefoundation.org.
30 minutes | 9 months ago
Fighting to End Malaria and Strengthen Global Health Systems
In recognition of World Malaria Day on April 25th, host Danielle Holly speaks with Margaret McDonnell, Executive Director of the UN Foundation's Nothing But Nets campaign, the world’s largest and most powerful community of supporters and advocates committed to saving lives and defeating malaria. Nothing But Nets has raised over $70 million to help deliver 13 million bed nets to families in need, along with other crucial malaria interventions that have drastically reduced fatalities since the early 2000's. Margaret also delves into the many connections between malaria and COVID-19, including lessons learned from the fight against malaria that can be applied to the current COVID-19 situation and how both diseases demonstrate the urgent need to better fund public health systems worldwide. To learn more about Nothing But Nets and the fight against malaria, visit nothingbutnets.net.
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