Week 5

Our fifth week was mainly a catch-up week. We further researched the organizations we were considering and at the end of the class, submitted the phone numbers for organizations we were considering as our non-profits. We also did some cold-calling to invite heads of these non-profits to come and speak at our two panels that would occur in the following two weeks. I mainly worked on analyzing the 990’s during this class. I read the 990’s for each of the organizations my group was considering and found the ratios. These were used to compare the statistics of the organizations and to find the ones that had the best use of their money. This is important because 990’s show what organizations use their money most efficiently and having the panelists come in gives a better idea of what the non-profit does and is all about. I think having the panelists come in makes it a lot easier to pick our final non-profit.

Week 4

During our fourth week of philanthropy, we divided the groups up a little more to make them more even. Because of that, we lost a few members so now we only have four people. During this class, we learned about reading the 990’s for non-profit organizations. We started by, as a class, discussing a Junior Achievement 990 in our workbook. We looked at where to find certain information about the organization and what the numbers mean. Then we broke into our groups with whom we further analyzed the 990. With our groups, we used the numbers to find ratios for how the organization’s money was spent. We used the book as a guide to tell us whether or not a high ratio was good and for which parts of the 990 to use in order to find the ratios. This transfers over into looking at the 990’s for the specific organizations we’re considering and seeing how these organizations spend their money.

Week 3

While I was unable to attend the philanthropy class for the third week, I still picked out three items for the brown paper bag activity. For this activity we were supposed to pick and bring in three items that we thought described us. My three items were a stuffed animal, a small soccer ball on a keychain, and a postcard. The stuffed animal represents my love for animals and volunteering with them. The small soccer ball on the keychain is for me playing soccer. My last item, the postcard represents both my love for traveling and having new experiences. Overall, I wish I could have gone to the meeting because I think it would have been really interesting to see what everyone else brought in and hear why.

Week 2

During our second week of philanthropy, we were all divided into our teams. I got both children and youth services and family care. While I was disappointed not to get my top choice, I am still very happy with what I got. Children and Youth Services was my second choice but I hadn’t really thought about choosing family care. Despite this, I think there are a lot of ways in which we can help organizations in these categories. My group is Amanda, Chase, Carly, My’Asja, Katie, and Erika. When we met as a group, we mainly discussed fundraising ideas. Katie already had some great ideas about ways we can fundraise and even had an idea of an organization we could donate to. We’re still looking at other organizations but the organization we’re considering is the Ednar Runner Tutorial Center for underprivileged youth. Katie’s fundraising idea was to have some kind or art show where we would collect artwork from places like foster homes and orphanages and display them. The proceeds would then go to whatever organization we decide on donating to. I’m excited to see what other ideas or group comes up with in the upcoming meetings.

Blog Entry-Week 1

I am looking forward to learning more about philanthropy from this course. While I couldn’t go to the meeting last week, I was stillĀ able to do the mad card activity. Animal Care was an easy first choice for me because of my love for animals and interest in helping them. However, I had a little more difficulty in narrowing down my other two choices because of how many great causes there were. In the end, my top three were Animal Care, Children and Youth Services, and Medicare. Overall though, I thought this was a really interesting activity because of how it showed so many different issues out there that I had never really thought about before. I think being a part of this course will be a great experience because I will be able to learn more about non-profit organizations and how they work and just helping out the community in general.