Monday, April 19, 2010

Picks of the Week: April 18 - 24, 2010

Website of the Week – Capable Communities

Capable Communities is a website created by Michigan State University’s Office of University Outreach & Engagement. University Outreach & Engagement (UO&E) offers practical support to local groups and organizations who are working to improve their own communities and the lives of their residents through partnerships based on a model, the Outcome-Asset Impact Model developed by the work of Brown and Reed and elaborated by UO&E, to increase local capacity for building positive change. This website is designed to improve the ability of anyone working to achieve healthy, fundamental, and sustainable change for individuals, families, groups, neighborhoods, and communities. Go to:

Publication of the Week -- Succeeding at Social Enterprise: Hard-Won Lessons for Nonprofits and Social Entrepreneurs by the Social Enterprise Alliance

From the publisher: From the Social Enterprise Alliance, the organization dedicated to building a robust social enterprise field, comes Succeeding at Social Enterprise. This practical guide is filled with the best practices, tools, guidance, models and successful cases for leaders (and future leaders) of social ventures and enterprises. A groundbreaking work, it brings together the knowledge and experience of social enterprise pioneers in the field and some of today's most successful social entrepreneurs to show what it takes to implement and run an effective social venture or organization. Succeeding at Social Enterprise focuses on real life examples, lessons learned and the core competencies that are needed to run a social venture in a nonprofit, highlighting such skills as managing and leading, business planning, marketing and sales, and accounting. Click to preview this book on

Trend of the Week – America's Nonprofits Brace for Tough 2010

According to a survey released by the Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) America's nonprofits expect that 2010 will be financially more difficult or as difficult as 2009, as 80% anticipate an increase in demand for services, leading many to seek creative alternatives. Key findings include:

• Nearly 90% expect 2010 to be as difficult or more difficult than 2009; only 12% expect 2010 to be financially easier for their organizations.
• 80% of nonprofits anticipate an increase in demand for services in 2010; 49% expect to be able to fully meet this demand level.
• Only 18% of organizations expect to end 2010 above break-even; 35% of organizations ended 2009 with an operating surplus.
• The majority – 61% – have less than three months of cash available; 12% have none.

For more information on the study, go to:

Resource of the Week – Free Excel Spreadsheets

Matt H. Evans maintains a website that offers one of the most extensive collections of financial management resources on the Web – virtually all of it available at no charge. He has gathered collection of free excel files to download from various sources. Go to:

Tech Tip of the Week -- Templates for Microsoft Word

Often the quickest way to create a professional document is to use a template. There are thousands available online. Many are even free. Check out these links for Word templates:

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