• For and Not-For-Profit Big Bang...

    Two worlds are colliding and the results can only be fun.

    I am sitting in the Impact Investing conference organised by the South African Network for Impact Investing (SAII) and hosted by the University of Pretoria’s Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) and you can see it happening.

    There are those of us from the nonprofit background (clearly visible as we don’t wear sharp cut suits or impossibly high heels) and those from the financial world, who talk a strange language of bonds and equity and use acronyms as if they are pronouns.

    I often think that the jargon of business is designed to be intimidating so that those of us on the periphery are forever excluded, like little children not invited to the Top Dogs birthday party.

    But this week, I had one of those moments where all became clear and suddenly it made sense. I missed the choir of angels and harps accompanying my epiphany, but it was no less dramatic.

    We are all saying the same thing - just differently.

    There are fund managers out there looking (yes – looking!) for social enterprises to invest in. This took a long time for the fundraiser in me to understand, as these moments are few in the nonprofit world.

    These fund managers will take you through a rigorous process assessing your business, your future growth and your ability to survive independently of traditional grants and handouts. You are after all, a business. They do however, despite the sharp suits and high heels, seem to have a heart. They are just approaching us from a different angle.

    So no longer can nonprofits assume that business does not understand the world of social service delivery. They bring new insights, which we must acknowledge and respect and vice versa.

    So this is the Big Bang, where the world of for and not-for-profits collide.

    It is a change in thinking.

    We know that the traditional funding model - of dependency on finite grants, and hard-won subsidies - cannot last.
    The financial stress and pressure that we all largely operate under means that we can never think ahead. We are always worrying about the now, rather than the where do we want to be.

    Impact Investing may not be your thing, but the thinking of this new approach has to be explored and interrogated.

    Because it encourages you to develop a social enterprise - a business wing that supports the delivery of social services. Because it is passionate about measurement and accountability. Because taking on financing  forces you out of the cushioned security of grant funding and means you have to face up to your own organisational risk: ‘Will it work?’ takes on a whole new meaning when you have to pay the money back.

    And let us be honest. This is exactly what the nonprofit world has been calling for. We have just been using different phrases that ask for new funding streams, greater accountability and transparency, as well as ownership by all.

    So. Sparks will fly, as our worlds slowly collide. But Impact Investing has gravitational pull and its going to be hard to resist.

    - Kerryn Krige is a freelance advisor in development. She has worked for some of South Africa’s leading non-profits as a fundraiser and programme manager. She started off as a journalist and moved into the non-profit sector in the United Kingdom, working for traditional charities and social enterprise. She has worked in East and Southern Africa and is passionate about building the capacity of the nonprofit sector. You can get in touch on

  • Call for Applications: 2013 Emerging Leaders International Fellows Programme

    Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society
    Please note: this opportunity closing date has passed and may not be available any more.
    Opportunity closing date: 
    Friday, April 26, 2013
    Opportunity type: 
    Fellowships and Scholarships
    Founded in September 1986, the Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society's mission is to strengthen philanthropy and civil society through education, research and leadership training. Based in New York amid the nation's largest concentration of foundations, corporate donors and local, national and international nonprofit organizations, the Center serves as a base for research and ongoing interchange among scholars and practitioners in the field.  The Center's activities are interdisciplinary, with an emphasis on multicultural, women's and international philanthropy.  Within this framework, the Center offers seminars, conferences and lectures; fellowships; research projects; and publications.

    The Center's Emerging Leaders International Fellows Programme provides leadership training through seminars with Third-Sector practitioners, research based on best practices, and the application of a comparative framework. Fellowship awards are available for emerging leaders at community foundations, at place-based grantmaking organisations and institutions that support community philanthropy.

    Fellows are based at The Graduate Center of The City University of New York, where they design and pursue an individualised research project. In addition, they attend weekly seminars, explore work of key agencies and foundations, meet with nonprofit leaders and study U.S. and international community foundation models.

    Those interested in strengthening community philanthropy and building capacity in local Third-Sector institutions are encouraged to apply for the 2013 programme.

    The 2013 Fellows will be selected from abroad and also from communities of color under-represented in the U.S. grantmaking sector.

    The programme will run from 16 September to 6 December 2013, and will focus on community foundations and indigenous/place-based giving set within the context of the global philanthropic sector.  Additional trends and practices in philanthropy will be covered to provide background and to address the research interests of all participating Fellows.

    To apply, complete the online application form.

    Towards the end of the form, in questions 17, 18 and 19, you are asked to upload the following documents which are required as part of your application packet:
    • Résumé or curriculum vitae identifying past and present employment, as well as educational experience;
    • Research proposal that identifies a research topic on community foundations, questions to be addressed in the research, and the anticipated methodology (3-5 pages);
    • Personal statement explaining what you seek to accomplish during the program and how the fellowship would enhance your professional career plans and trajectory;
    • Any professional or academic experience outside of your home country should also be described (maximum 2 pages in length).
    If you are unable to upload these documents, you may e-mail them as attachments to Please indicate "ELIFP 13" in the subject line.
    Applicants must also arrange for two signed professional letters of recommendation, preferably from individuals who know the applicant in a professional capacity. There are no specific questions that referees need to address, however, letters are expected to reflect the nature of their experience with the applicant, their opinion on whether the applicant would be an asset to the programme, and their thoughts on whether the programme would be of benefit to the applicant in furthering the field of philanthropy.

    Please note that the letters of recommendation must be signed on official letterheads, and should be submitted to the Center directly by the referee (not the applicant), by e-mail to or fax to +1 212-817-1572 or via post to:

    Kathleen D. McCarthy
    Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society
    The Graduate Center, CUNY
    365 Fifth Avenue, Suite 5401
    New York, NY 10016
    United States

    Please note that due to the high volume of applications, applications that are missing required documents will not be considered.

    For more about the 2013 Emerging Leaders International Fellows Programme, refer to

    For more about the Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, refer to

    To view other opportunities, visit

  • New Publication on the Sustainability of South African Civil Society

    South Africa’s civil society sector, variously known as the nonprofit (NPO) or non-governmental organisation (NGO) sector, plays a vital and often unacknowledged developmental role. In spite of an enlightened Constitution, discrimination and inequity still abound in South Africa. Women, children, people of colour, indigenous peoples, migrants, gay and lesbian groups, and people living with HIV/AIDS, are among particularly vulnerable groups. Although there has been some progress in racial, ethnic, and gender equality since1994, South Africa remains a vastly unequal society, driven by all the worst consequences of pervasive poverty. These include health, education, welfare and human rights failures.

    The civil society sector is dedicated to alleviation of these and other damaging socio-economic conditions. Over the past two decades the sector has increasingly filled gaps in government service delivery. It is no exaggeration to contend that without the efforts of organisations of civil society the suffering of the poor, the marginalised and the sick would be significantly more acute. In view of this it seems indefensible that this important sector is experiencing a sustainability crisis. While we do not have current and reliable statistics on funding to the sector, a variety of sources show that most organisations rely on a combination of (diminishing) international funding, corporate social investment, donations from individuals, and a degree of income-generation, often via government contracts. The support of government is erratic at best, as reflected in several recent media exposés. As a result, the sustainability of many important organisations is threatened and many have been forced to close or to drastically reduce staff and associated capacity. These circumstances are greatly exacerbated by the current uncertain economic climate.

    With the intention of improving this situation, a group of organisations have published a new report: ‘Critical Perspectives on the Sustainability of the South African Civil Society Sector’. Including an assessment of the functioning of the National Lotteries Distribution Trust Fund (NLDTF) and the National Development Agency (NDA), the report represents the outcome of extensive research and consultation. The objective is to  improve the practice of government grant-making and investment in the sector, and in the process contribute to an effective enabling regulatory environment for South African civil society.

    The research revealed that the legislated ‘enabling environment’ for civil society requires review and strengthening. The NPO Directorate within the Department of Social Development has been unable to effectively implement its responsibilities in accordance with the Nonprofit Organisations Act. The NLDTF and the NDA have not managed to disburse funding effectively to the sector in accordance with the relevant legislation. The serious lack of current and reliable national data about the size, scope and activities of the sector negatively affects the ability of the sector and of government to support it. Statistics South Africa has not met its obligations in this regard. The sustainability and effectiveness of civil society to address poverty and inequality is compromised by these problems.

    The report concludes with a number of practical conclusions and recommendations. Key among these is a call for the National Planning Commission to review the current dysfunctional regulatory environment in consultation with representatives of the sector. Piecemeal adjustments will not work – a cross-government systemic approach must be adopted in order to ensure that the various departments and state-related agencies function in accordance with over-arching developmental policies. The expected outcome of this recommendation should be a holistic framework for the location and effective functioning of the NDA, NLDTF, specific allocations from official development assistance, private philanthropy and corporate social investments, congruent with the developmental state.

    Click here to read the full report.

    For more information contact:

    Colleen du Toit
    Mobile: 083 646 8469

    Phiroshaw Camay
    Mobile: 082 886 5886

    Rajesh Latchman
    Mobile: 083 443 0227

    Issued by:

    Charities Aid Foundation (CAF Southern Africa)
    CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation
    Co-operative for Research and Education (CORE)
    Southern African NGO Network (SANGONeT)
    Legal Resources Centre (LRC)
    National Welfare Social Service & Development Forum

    To view other NGO press releases, refer to


    Date published: 
    Charities Aid Foundation (CAF Southern Africa), CIVICUS:World Alliance for Citizen Participation, Co-operative for Research and Education (CORE), Southern African NGO Network (SANGONeT), Legal Resources Centre (LRC), National Welfare Social Service & Development Forum
  • Donor Engagement Forum

    People First Foundation

    The People First Foundation will host a Donor Engagement Forum on 3 August 2012 in Cape Town.

    The aim of the forum is to create a mutual space for non-profit leaders and donors to engage as equals around the issue of alternative funding strategies and donor practices in a time of finanicial crisis.


    Non-profits live and operate in extremely difficult times! There are 3 types of non-profits operating currently namely the ones that have perished and became victims of the funding crisis, those who are currently struggling to maintain themselves and thirdly those who anticipated the crisis and managed to avoid it.
    Since 1998 the fundraising scene is not improving for non-profits in South Africa. It is actually getting worse! Budgets on social expenditure have been diverted to the World Cup and now we are paying the price. Donors (and government) are moving more and more toward very big non-profits who can demonstrate big impact so that they can justify their appeals for raising funds from their sources. The effect is that more and more medium to smaller non-profits are pushed to the periphery and being marginalized. More and more international donors are exiting South Africa claiming we are now a middle income country and must look after itself. What they conveniently forget is that in terms of the black population SA is a third world country with the highest ratio of income inequality in the world. Already it was announced that Atlantic Philanthropies from the US and maybe even the Ford Foundation will wind up operations in 2012. Cordaid from the Netherlands has already started exiting.
    This will be a major blow for many non-profits who received their funding from these sources. Already there is speculation that PEPFAR funding (for HIV/Aids) will be phased out in 2012. In order to survive this reality, non-profits will be forced to reposition themselves as a matter of urgency!! If a climate of urgency does not permeate the corridors of each and every non-profit then there is a big problem!! It is extremely desperate and difficult times!!!
    All this is on top of a deepening funding, and at a deeper level, a leadership crisis, with its roots post 1994. Even non-profits who were well funded and highly professional are now feeling the pinch. The shift towards right wing administrations in Europe coupled with the deepening global economic crisis (caused by greedy bankers bailed out with taxpayers money) are exacerbating an already precarious situation.

    Panel members:
    • Taj Aklekker, National Chairpeson of Community Chest of SA and panel chairperson;
    • Frank Julie, Facilitator, author, strategist, advisor and chairperson of People First Foundation;
    • Titania Fernandez, Senior Fundraising Manager at Community Chest - Western Cape;
    • Ric Amansure, Corporate funding specialist and director of SA Gowth Institute;
    • Anthea Davids-Thomas, Director of Social Change Assistance Trust (SCAT);
    • Soraya Mentoor, Director of The Wheat Trust;
    • Tina Thiart, Convener of and New Fundraisers Forum;
    • Jessica Fortuin, Provincial Director (WC) National Development Agency;
    • Freda Camphor, Assistant Director (Bellville Labour Centre), Dept of Labour.
    Donation: R60 per person.

    Make payments to:

    Account: People First Foundation
    Bank: FNB
    Acc nr: 62279429619
    Branch code: 250655

    Please e-mail deposit slip to or fax to 021 911 5444, with your name and contact details.

    RSVP: Vuyiseka January at or sms to 083 263 3015

    For more about the People First Foundation, refer to
    Event start date: 
    Event end date: 
    Event venue: 
    Artscape (opposite the CT Civic Centre), Cape Town, 10h00-13h00 (networking 12h30-13h00)
    Event type: 
  • NLB Extends Call for Input into Funding Criteria

    The recent call by the National Lotteries Board (NLB) for stakeholder input to assist in identifying the focus areas for National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund (NLDTF) funding has been positively received by major roleplayers. The input from stakeholders is streaming in steadily and the NLB has decided to extend the period for input to 22 May 2012 so that more roleplayers, especially those in outlying areas, can also use the opportunity to make valuable input.

    Input into focus areas for funding in the sectors of Arts, Culture and National Heritage (including Environment); Charities; Miscellaneous Purposes and Sport and Recreation will help streamline the process and will be clearly identified in the next call for applications.

    When identifying the focus areas, stakeholders should take into account Government Regulation 9340 of July 2010 that highlights that 50 percent of NLDTF funds are to go to rural, under privileged and poor communities. Beneficiaries of NLDTF funding have to be registered nonprofit organisations.

    Stakeholders should identify five priority areas for funding within their sectors e.g. children (charities sector), film (arts, culture and national heritage (including environment sector), youth sport development (sport and recreation sector) etc.

    Input from stakeholders should reach the NLB by no later than 22 May 2012 using the fax number and e-mail addresses below. This will be shared with the relevant distributing agencies and will assist in the planning for the next call for applications while taking into account the amount available in the NLDTF for distribution during 2012/2013 financial year.

    The input forms are available at

    Those organisations without access to the internet, can obtain input forms by calling 08600 65383

    Input can be sent by fax to: 086 555 7623

    E-mail responses will be linked to the province from which the input comes as follows:

    For more about the National Lotteries Board, refer to

    To view other NGO press releases, refer to

    Date published: 
    National Lotteries Board
  • Yatsar Centre - Request for Donations

    Yatsar Centre is a nonprofit organisation that operates with the mercy of our Lord, as it provides shelter, food and employment for homeless people in Africa, as well as acting as an effective distribution agent to serve other missions to the effect of providing food and necessities on an ongoing basis.

    The Centre does not believe in street collections, but utilise a workforce of skilled people to assist it in achieving certain set goals. These people come from broken marriages, destroyed dreams and disillusionment. The organisation’s mission is to guide them back to a normal and fruitful life.

    However, an institution like ours cannot operate successfully only on what it believes in, or what it plans. It is dependent on the business community to assist it with whatever means they have at their disposal.

    It is for this reason that the Centre is taking the liberty of turning to people like you for donations of any kind.

    NPO: Welfare Charity Organisation

    NPO Number: NPO: 007-471 NPO

    Contact the Yatsar Centre: Tel: 012 335 5235 / Fax: 086 721 0124 / E-mail:

    For more about the Yatsar Centre, refer to

  • Rich Nations Urged to Do More to Fight Poverty

    Nobel Laureate and chairperson of the Brooks World Poverty Institute, Joseph Stiglitz, says international trade will only help fight global poverty if rich countries turn their rhetoric into action.

    Speaking at the Global Poverty Summit in Johannesburg, Stiglitz pointed out that, “It is time to bring the talks to a close. Successfully doing so requires courage and sacrifice by the rich countries.”

    The summit heard that over a billion people, around a fifth of the world’s population, live in absolute poverty, despite inhabiting a world rich in resources, knowledge and technology.

    To read the article titled, “Global trade critical to reduce poverty,” click here.
    The Citizen
  • EU Grants Côte d'Ivoire €5m Emergency Humanitarian Aid

    The European Union (EU) is to release an emergency humanitarian aid of €5 million for those threatened by the post-election crisis Côte d'Ivoire.

    In a press statement, European commissioner in charge of international aid, Chritina Georgieva, points out that, “Our duty is to work out emergency plans and as soon as possible give humanitarian aid to the victims.”

    Georgieva says the post-electoral troubles Côte d'Ivoire had displaced mass populations of 11 000 people to Ghana, Liberia and Guinea-Conakry.

    The funds released will be managed by NGOs, humanitarian partners of EU and operating in Côte d'Ivoire.

    To read the article titled, “EU grants Côte d'Ivoire five million euro emergency humanitarian aid,” click here.

    Afrique en ligne
  • SA Philanthropists Motivated by ‘Ubuntu’ – Report

    Wealthy South Africans are among the world’s most generous philanthropists, motivated by a sense of ‘ubuntu’ and the fact that the country is one of the world’s most unequal societies, according to an ABSA report.

    ‘Global Giving: The Culture of Philanthropy’
    notes that the country is the second-most charitable country, behind the United States.

    The report ranks SA fourth, with Ireland and India joining first, in giving up time to help the less fortunate. It also finds that SA  along with the US, Ireland and India, lead the way as countries that donate significant amounts of money and time to charitable causes.

    To read the article titled, “Rich South Africans are champion givers,” click here.
    Business Day
  • Giving Forward: The New Philanthropic Way to Give Back

    This week I had the opportunity to attend a conference in South Africa along with other leaders from the government, social and private sector to think about the role of philanthropy in addressing social challenges. Reflecting on what we shared and discussed, I realise that for me, philanthropy is not simply a means of 'giving back', but more importantly a means of "giving forward."

    Giving forward means going beyond traditional charity and addressing the root causes of social problems like malnutrition through social innovation and multi-sector collaboration, leveraging diverse expertise and resources to reach those in need. I am talking about a kind of philanthropy that is a catalyst for change -- for example, investments that foster local entrepreneurship and the growth of small and medium enterprises and that strengthen a country's health and economy. Philanthropy for me means prosperity that is inclusive for the many -- not just the few -- and that creates a self-sustaining cycle of growth.

    One of the reasons I joined the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) as Chair of the Board was that I wanted to be part of a model that leverages markets and many different players to solve the enormous challenge while empowering local civil society, who are closer to the challenges than we are.

    Let me give you a tangible example. Shainaz Begum is one of 74 000 community health volunteers at BRAC, a large Bangladeshi NGO supported by GAIN deployed in close to 70 000 villages across Bangladesh -- a country with a high level of malnutrition. From the village of Sharifbag, about an hour and a half drive from the capital Dhaka, she has been a community health volunteer, known as a ‘Shasthya Shebika’ in the local Bangla language, for more than twelve years. Shainaz goes door to door in her village selling medicines and health commodities such as oral saline, iodised salt and birthing kits. She visits an average of 300 households and earns an average of 2 500 taka per month (US$ 35) from the profit margins on the medicines she sells.

    Recently, through GAIN's ability to connect the non-profit world with the business world, she is also now selling sachets of vitamin and mineral powders that can be mixed with an infant's meal for US 3 cents per sachet. Through support from GAIN, Renata, a large family owned pharmaceutical company in Bangladesh, is manufacturing the sachets, and has teamed up the BRAC to sell and market the product to vulnerable families in remote, rural areas through community workers like Shainaz. Renata is currently producing five million sachets of the product per month. Over a period of five years, the investment will benefit nearly seven million children on a commercially sustained basis.

    It's a win-win partnership that harnesses the strengths of each sector and provides a sustainable way to give Bangladeshi children an equal start in life to those in developed countries.

    At the same time, the multi-sector collaboration is empowering local civil society leaders like Shainaz through developing her leadership skills and providing her with an income. She is even running for local elections in her village upon the request of people in her village. These are the kinds of grassroots leaders we need to empower and to include in this 'giving forward' model.

    Over the past year, GAIN has supported interventions in more than 25 countries providing close to 400 million individuals in Africa and Asia with access to better quality foods; and we are on target to reach one billion over the next few years. We are beginning to have a tremendous impact on the very challenging issue of malnutrition facing two billion people in the world.

    The giving forward model has played an important role in establishing GAIN as an organisation and continues to provide catalytic, high-impact capital to create sustainable, cost-effective solutions for stronger, healthier communities and nations. So rather than giving back, give forward and make lasting change possible.

    - Jay Naidoo is chairperson of the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN) and a founder of the development arm of the investment and management company, J & J Group, which he co-founded.

    For more information about his work, refer to

    This article was first published in the Huffington Post on 23 November 2010.

    Jay Naidoo
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