November 13, 2013
The Philippines has been devastated by Typhoon Haiyan, with thousands of people dead or missing and millions of lives impacted since it made landfall on Friday.
Minnesota grantmakers have responded quickly to the urgent needs faced by those affected, with many are mobilizing to donate money, supplies, staff time and other resources to assist in the relief efforts. These include:
- Medtronic Philanthropy giving $100,000 to the Red Cross and matching all employee donations dollar for dollar, up to $50,000 per employee. It will also offer up to 5 days paid time off for employees to volunteer in relief efforts.
- Ecolab Foundation donating bleach, sanitizers and other needed cleaning supplies.
- The General Mills Foundation committing $150,000 in disaster relief support to communities affected by Typhoon Haiyan.
MCF is collecting all efforts by Minnesota grantmakers in support of this cause. See our website for the full list and for suggested resources you can use when considering your own response. Individual donors may be especially interested in this list of ways to help from the Star Tribune, and these tips from the Charities Review Council on how to give wisely and confidently.
Are you and your organization helping those affected by Typhoon Haiyan? Let us know in the comments.
July 25, 2013
The Polaris Foundation donated ATVs for relief and clean-up efforts after a May 2013 tornado in OK.
The latest news from the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP) says a majority of companies nationally have increased cash and noncash giving since 2007, boosting their support of community despite an uncertain economy.
In Minnesota, often recognized for the generosity of its business community, corporate support is crucial to community betterment. Corporations represent less than 10% of our state’s grantmakers, but they give nearly half of all dollars granted in the state. In 2010, their giving exceeded $636 million!
In the summer issue of Giving Forum, read more about how companies around the country and here at home have changed their giving to increase returns on their community investments by:
- strengthening links between business goals and giving priorities,
- intensifing collaborative efforts that promise real impact on tough social problems, and
- augmenting cash grants with noncash donations of product, employee time and talent.
Local examples from Aveda, General Mills, Target, UnitedHealth Group and others are included in the issue’s lead article.
- Susan Stehling, MCF communications associate
July 2, 2012
An example of Duluth flood damage
We’ve all either experienced it first-hand or read the stories and seen the photos of the recent flooding in northeast Minnesota. Estimates come in at over $100 million for the the damage done to area homes, businesses and infrastructure.
Grantmakers in the region and around the state have mobilized to support the clean-up and rebuilding efforts. Among the activity we’re tracking at MCF:
- Northland Foundation, AgStar Financial Services, Blandin Foundation, and Great River Energy have established the Business Flood Recovery Fund. Businesses impacted by the flooding may apply for grants of up to $5,000 to replace or repair inventory, equipment, supplies and buildings. The Northland Foundation has set an initial goal of $300,000 for the fund and continues to fundraise.
- Northland Foundation has also made a $15,000 grant to support the relief efforts of the American Red Cross.
- The Deluxe Corporation Foundation has donated $25,000 to the Red Cross to help victims of flooding in the Duluth area, and it’s coordinating a drive to collect donations of bottled water and cash.
- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation has donated $10,000 to the Duluth-area Red Cross and $5,000 to the Cannon Valley Trail.
- Wells Fargo Foundation Minnesota has donated $25,000 to Salvation Army Duluth.
- Catholic United Financial Foundation is pairing with Nechama Jewish Response to provide volunteer support to area homeowners.
- Minnesota Power Foundation, RBC Foundation, Delta Dental of Minnesota, U.S. Bancorp Foundation and others are sponsoring the United Way of Greater Duluth’s Twin Ports Region Long Term Flood Recovery Fund, to help the unmet needs of residents when insurance, government or personal funds are insufficient to cover rebuilding or rehabilitation of homes.
For updates as MCF receives them, keep checking back on the Disaster Giving section of mcf.org. As the Star Tribune reminded us on Sunday, the Duluth area is still in need of donations and volunteers, and we can all play a part in supporting the recovery.
Photo cc BringMeTheNews
November 17, 2011
National Philanthropy Day is being celebrated in Minnesota this Friday, Nov. 18.
I’m thrilled to see that Minnesota Helps – North Minneapolis Recovery Fund will be awarded the “Outstanding Contribution to Philanthropy” award. It’s a well-deserved honor that comes just six months after a tornado slammed into the north side of our city. Thus far, the fund has provided $1,337,160 to assist the residents of North Minneapolis.
Shortly after the tornado hit, local foundations and the Greater Twin Cities United Way joined together to create the fund to quickly assist those directly impacted by the storm.
The effort has been led by the following partners, almost all of them members of MCF (marked with an asterisk).
- The Minneapolis Foundation*
- Greater Twin Cities United Way*
- Best Buy Corporation*
- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation*
- CenturyTel, Inc.
- Cummins Foundation
- Faegre & Benson Foundation*
- George Family Foundation*
- The Grotto Foundation*
- James R. Thorpe Foundation*
- Land O’Lakes, Inc.*
- Lunds and Byerly’s
- McKnight Foundation*
- North Star Fund
- Park Nicollet Foundation*
- Pohlad Family Foundation
- The Saint Paul Foundation*
- TCF Foundation*
- US Bank – Private Client & Trust Services*
- Wells Fargo Foundation*
Many of these partners made large donations and also matched contributions from city residents and others who answered the call for assistance. GiveMN.org waived credit card fees on donations, so 100% of every donation went to help those in need.
Thanks to all of the funding partners and to those who contributed to the fund. We all make Minnesota a better place to live.
Funds Still Available
And, funds are still available for nonprofits, faith based organizations and public entities providing support and financial assistance to those most affected by this disaster. Learn more about how to apply for funds.
-Susan Stehling, communications associate
October 28, 2011
The last few years have seen extreme weather worldwide, and Minnesota is no exception, with record-breaking flooding across the state and tornadoes striking Wadena and North Minneapolis. Philanthropy has played a pivotal role in helping Minnesotans get back on their feet after these weather-related disasters. Recently, MCF members involved in these efforts came together to share stories and discuss what they’ve learned. Here are ten of the top takeaways for how to best respond when disaster strikes:
- Make sure that your own organization has a disaster/business continuity plan.
- Have conversations with your board and staff about disaster response and recovery at least annually and be prepared to think and act flexibly.
- If you are a community foundation, know how to activate on line and other donation mechanisms (like www.givemn.org) quickly.
- Have a basic understanding about the roles of local, state and national government agencies in your service area related to disaster. In Minnesota, a great resource is Homeland Security and Emergency Management, a division of the Department of Public Safety.
- Provide matching funds for fundraising efforts and have a plan for announcing those matches in the media.
- When raising donations or matching funds, convey that dollars will be used for both short and long term recovery needs. Long term recovery dollars are the hardest for communities to find (and you may want the flexibility to decide about “patient” capital later).
- Leverage (don’t duplicate) short term resources that will be available if a disaster occurs including Red Cross, Salvation Army, Lutheran Social Services, Catholic United Finance Foundation.
- Consider how disaster recovery and community rebuilding aligns with your existing grantmaking priorities (you might be surprised!) and what you can do to shorten forms, expedite approval procedures and simplify reporting requirements while supporting relief work.
- Support the MNVOAD (Minnesota Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster) framework for organizing community based planning and response.
- Reach out to colleagues (especially those at foundations who have been thrust into disaster grantmaking by chance rather than choice) and don’t forget about these resource organizations for tools and best practices: Council on Foundations, Minnesota Council on Foundations, and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy.
Join the conversation: Has your organization been involved in disaster response? What would you add to this list?
Stephanie Jacobs, MCF director of member services
Photo cc biondisign
October 26, 2011
Read the fall issue of Giving Forum for an update on what’s happening at Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies, where grantmaking has started in the areas of Environment; Relief, Recovery and Development; and Arts and Cultures.
- Environment: Grants made in June focus on land-use solutions in the Tongass National Forest in Alaska and neighboring Great Bear Rainforest in Canada; also Micronesia, to support efforts to preserve coral reefs and land-based resources. The next grants likely will be made in Asia, focused on marine- and land-use in Indonesia and Cambodia. Watch for a local subprogram focus on connecting youth with the outdoors.
- Relief, Recovery and Development: First “rapid response” grants made in September 2011 to Midwest community foundations, to help residents affected by flooding and tornadoes.
- Arts and Cultures – Native Arts, Teacher Education, and Folk Art: Organizations working on Native Arts in the Pacific Northwest are now being invited to apply for grants from the Native Arts program. Those doing similar work on Native Arts in the upper Midwest, including Minnesota, will soon be invited to apply.
Other program areas that the organization will address are under development. They will include: Aging services; children and families; animal welfare; and planned health.
Most, if not all, of these areas will include a component of local giving. Terry Meersman, vice president of programs for Margaret A. Cargill Foundation, explains:
“We’re clear about our program areas, and we’re clear there will be local giving. As much as possible, we’d like to be consistent in the areas we’re defining for national and global giving, but until we have things laid out completely, it’s hard to say that there will be an exact parallel structure locally.”
Read the Giving Forum article for much more information.
- Susan Stehling, communications associate
August 29, 2011
Thousands of families in the Horn of Africa are suffering and in need of hunger relief because of an ongoing drought that is the region’s worst in decades. Several MCF members are responding with donations to partner organizations providing on-the-ground assistance:
- The Mosaic Company has posted a $100,000 matching grant for the Minneapolis-based American Refugee Committee to GiveMN. Every donation to ARC will be matched by Mosaic, with transaction fees also covered, allowing donors to double their impact. Donate now through GiveMN.
- The General Mills Foundation is donating $100,000 to the American Refugee Committee’s efforts, in the form of an initial $50,000 donation plus an offer to match donations from other Twin Cities companies up to $50,000.
- In response to the General Mills matching offer, Best Buy is donating $50,000 and carrying the matching challenge forward, with an additional $50,000 available to be matched.
- The Cargill Foundation has made a $100,000 donation to its longtime partners, CARE and the World Food Programme, two global organizations that fight hunger and poverty and are deeply involved in the Horn of Africa crisis.
MCF has set up a page to track grantmaker responses to the famine as we hear about them. Check back at mcf.org for further updates.
May 25, 2011
Hundreds of north Minneapolis residents have been left without permanent housing after Sunday’s deadly tornado. Minnesota grantmakers are mobilizing to collect funds and coordinate services to support those affected.
Here’s a sample of how MCF members have helped thus far:
- The Minneapolis Foundation, The United Way Twin Cities and other funding partners have set up a North Minneapolis Fund to match public giving up to $200,000 at giveMN.org. Read the complete news release.
- General Mills Foundation has committed $75,000 to support immediate response efforts in Missouri and Minnesota. Read more.
- Target Corporation has donated $50,000 in monetary support and product to the American Red Cross and Salvation Army. Read more.
- Mosaic has donated $25,000 for tornado relief efforts. Read more.
- Updates on aid as it is provided and how you can donate,
- Volunteer opportunities and where your help is needed,
- Assistance available to residents and small businesses in the affected areas.