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Buzz is Changing Our World's news and commentary blog, covering the latest stories and updates in the world of philanthropy.

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April 13, 2011

News Briefing: Michelle Obama, Jill Biden to Lead Effort to Help Military Families

  • The Home Depot Foundation refocuses its giving to support veterans' organizations and rehabilitating houses.  [Atlanta Journal-Constitution]
  • Five new high schools in New Jersey have been awarded nearly $1M in grants from Mark Zuckerberg.  [Associated Press]
  • Michelle Obama and Jill Biden launch a national initiative to support service members and their families.  [The Washington Post]

February 28, 2011

News Briefing: Gates Foundation Works to Boost Food Production

  • The Gates Foundation forges a new effort to support agricultural research projects in Africa and Asia.  [Reuters]
  • More than 90 chief executives meet in New York for International Corporate Philanthropy Day.  [Reuters]

February 01, 2011

News Briefing: Folk, Native American Arts Could Gain Millions from M.A.C. Foundation

  • Feed The Children's fired president dismisses his wrongful-termination lawsuit.  [The Oklahoman]



  • The Margaret A. Cargill Foundation, with potentially $4 billion in assets, is gearing up a hefty grant to help raise the profile of folk and Native American art forms.  [Los Angeles Times]

December 28, 2010

News Briefing: Brands Help Fight Childhood Obesity

Big brands are steering millions in charitable dollars to building neighborhood playgrounds for children to help fight Childhood Obesity.  [New York Times]

Boston Foundation grant will pay for teacher development, curriculum development in math and literacy, and a clicker system that will boost participation.  [Boston Globe]

December 16, 2010

News Briefing: Save the Children Breaks With Soda Tax Effort

  • Obama meets with Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett to discuss the Giving Pledge.  [USA Today]


  • Pedro Espada is indicted for embezzling from a nonprofit he controlled.  [New York Times]


  • Save the Children abandons efforts to tax soft drinks and claims grants from Coca-Cola and Pepsi are not a factor in the decision.  [New York Times]

October 01, 2010

News Briefing: Pepsi Refresh Contestant Claims Rules Were Broken

  • A group battling childhood cancer has filed a complaint against Pepsi, contending that its fundraising contest, Pepsi Refresh, has been infiltrated by organizations with a political agenda.  [New York Times]

  • Saturday's Farm Aid concert will feature 15 musical acts, including Willie Nelson, one of its founders.  [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]

  • Ten U.S. cities are recruiting volunteers to help with local problems as part of a nationwide emphasis on service led by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.  [Associated Press]

August 09, 2010

News Briefing: Companies Donate Employees' Time, Service Instead of Cash

  • Companies' donations of time, advice, and service - rather than cash - rose 5% last year.  [USA Today]

  • Wal-Mart is the top corporate giver in 2009.  [USA Today]

  • Teach for America and the KIPP Foundation each win $50 million grants from the Department of Education.  [New York Times]

June 28, 2010

News Briefing: Panera Co. to Open More Pay-What-You-Wish Eateries

  • Prince Harry spends three days in New York, visiting West Point, promoting his charity, and throwing the first pitch at the Mets game.  [Associated Press]

  • Panera plans to expand its new nonprofit model around the country.  [Associated Press]

  • Lawmakers fund charities with earmarks.  [USA Today]

April 06, 2010

News Briefing: Boston Asks Exempt Sector for Help

  • Wal-Mart Stores gave more than $467 million in charitable donations in the U.S., a 23 percent increase.  [Reuters]
  • Boston's hospitals, universities, and other tax-exempt nonprofits may be asked to contribute tens of millions of dollars more to help pay for basic municipal services such as police and public works.  [Boston Globe]

March 08, 2010

News Briefing: Donations from Americans for Haiti top $1 Billion

  • The former chief operating officer of Catholic Charities has called on the organization to reverse its recent decision to change health benefits for employees' spouses.  [Washington Post]
  • According to Charles Bronfman, the new crop of philanthropists is focusing on smaller start-up organizations and looking for ways to leverage their gifts.  [Wall Street Journal]
  • Experts who track charitable giving say donations from Americans for earthquake relief in Haiti have passed the $1 billion mark.  [Associated Press]
  • Giving by U.S. companies endured the worst recession in decades with mixed results as some pared back philanthropy in the face of tough times, others increased budgets, and most predicted a steady 2010.  [Reuters]
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