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September 22 2010


Grant Opportunity: Submit Your Nonprofit Skills Training or Job Placement Ideas by Oct 8

The Microsoft Elevate America community initiative is a new grant program that supports nonprofit organizations in offering employment services, including technology skills training and job placement, in local communities across the United States. To support this initiative, Microsoft are committing $4 million in cash, $6 million in software and technology skills training curriculum over the next two years.

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September 01 2010


The parachutes have landed…

…and they are not us. Local newsies often have to cope with big time attitudes when networks come to town to cover local celebrations and tragedies.

This is one such examples, when ESPN parachuted into Folsom, California, for their prep game program. They came, they ran the show…and when they left, few were cheering for them.

The local media, which is out there on a regular basis covering high school sports, were cut out…told they couldn’t even be on the field during a high school football game between Folsom and Grant high schools. That was changed so the game could be taped from the goal lines…but still.

I’ve been on both sides of this issue…generally the side looking at the trampled remains when the networks pulled out. The taste left in the mouths of local residents and journalists is pretty bitter…because the job of the “big boys” is to get in, do their jobs, get out. They don’t have to care about tomorrow or deal with long term relationships.

But I’ve also been to major stories up in foothills and backwaters of my region…where the weekly paper is the mainstay and use “flatlanders” are the big fish passing through. My job has been that of the invader – get in, do my job, get out. Yeah. Problem is, I never learned how to be uncaring and nasty, so that didn’t happen. Using people…sucking up to them, milking them for their souls, and then walking out…is wrong. News is, after all, about the human condition.

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Soup.io will be discontinued :(

Dear soup.io fans and users,
today, we have to share very sad news. Soup.io will stop working in less than 10 days. :(
It's breaking our heart and we honestly tried whatever we could to keep the platform up and running. But the high costs and low revenue streams made it impossible to continue with it. We invested a lot of personal time and money to operate the platform, but when it's over, it's over.
We are really sorry. Soup.io is part of the internet history and online for one and a half decades.
Here are the hard facts:
- In 10 days the platform will stop working.
- Backup your data in this time
- We will not keep backups nor can we recover your data
July, 20th, 2020 is the due date.
Please, share your thoughts and feelings here.
Your Soup.io TEAM
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May 05 2010


Pierre and Alexandra Boulat Grant accepting applications

Applications are now being accepted for the Pierre and Alexandra Boulat Grant. Deadline is June 30, 2010.

Formed in the memory of Pierre and Alexandra Boulat by friends and family after the death of Alexandra Boulat in 2007, the Association seeks to keep the spirit of father and daughter alive through making their work available to the public and creating an annual grant to a photographer and sponsoring the education of young photographers.

This 8,000 Euro grant will be awarded to a photographer covering a social, economic, political or cultural issue in a journalistic manner to “produce a story that has never been told but that the photographer cannot find support for within the media.” The grant will be awarded this fall at Visa pour l’Image in Perpignan, France.

For more details and to download the application form, go here: http://www.viiphoto.com/association.html

November 05 2009


Kicking Off the Grant Process With Monitoring and Evaluation

We at the Jefferson Institute began our experience as a 2009 Knight News Challenge winner with one of the more exciting and misunderstood elements of the grant cycle: monitoring and evaluation (M&E).

When done properly, M&E begins with the grantee setting out clearly the objectives of the grant, the activities necessary to achieve the objectives, and the resources applied to make these activities happen. So, for example, blogging for Idea Lab is an activity. An objective might be to create a thriving community, or to help guide the way for community news in transition.

For our Knight project, the objective is a bit more specific: to create open source tools that make community news and information easy to visualize. Activities include mapping existing tools, surveying users for specific unmet needs, coding, testing, translating, demoing, fixing, etc. Our primary resource will be the Drupal community, which is also one of our project's main beneficiaries. Ideally, we will create a virtuous circle.

The grantee is expected to have a clear causal logic, setting out how the activities will achieve the objectives, and identifying verifiable measures to assess performance against targets at each level: resources, activities, and objectives. Especially objectives. It is important to do this well, because far too often the project gets underway and the grantee loses sight of the objectives. They end up obsessing about performance as it relates to activities and resources. This is natural because activities are much more easily controlled and measured than the messy causal chain leading to the objectives. The donor, meanwhile, is mostly interested in the objectives. These differing centers of attention are the root of most donor-grantee disputes.

By starting out so early on M&E -- essentially before the grant even begins -- Knight is demonstrating how these tools can be used for partnership and management, not merely bean-counting. Our opportunity as the grantee is to embrace their challenge of partnership.

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