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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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July 19, 2010

News Briefing: Rebuilding New Orleans

  • Leonard Riggio, the founder and chairman of Barnes & Noble, and his wife, Louise, will build their 50th home this August for New Orleans families who lost their homes after Hurricane Katrina.  [Wall Street Journal]

  • Paul Allen takes his friend Bill Gates up on his challenge to publicly pledge the majority of his wealth to philanthropy.  [Seattle Times]

  • The Hasan Family Foundation, which paid Scott McInnis $300,000 for water essays, wants its money back.  [Associated Press]

October 16, 2007

News Briefing: Nonprofit Investigative Journalism

  • A group of philanthropists will start ProPublica, a nonprofit news organization that will conduct investigative reporting and provide articles free to other news outlets. [Chronicle of Philanthropy]
  • Newspaper, state investigate a Massachusetts nonprofit with history of giving jobs and contracts to family members and friends. [Patriot Ledger]
  • Nonprofit assistance for Hurrican Katrina victims in the Gulf states is running dry. [The Advocate]

August 10, 2007

News Briefing: Red Cross Faces Criticism Over Aid Program for Hurricane Victims

  • An American Red Cross program has raised criticism from evacuees, who say the program has been too secretive and strict.  [New York Times]
  • A Long Island nonprofit is missing thousands of dollars; two employees accuse each other of taking the money.  [Newsday]

July 20, 2007

News Briefing: Katrina Volunteers Feel Unwanted

  • Some Katrina volunteers find their help is no longer welcome.  [Associated Press]
  • New Yorker one of 15 finalists for the $100,000 Purpose Prize, for his eco-pioneerism.  [New York Times]

May 14, 2007

News Briefing: Religious Groups Reap Federal Aid for Pet Projects

  • Earmarks for religious organizations have increased sharply in recent years.  [New York Times]

April 23, 2007

News Briefing: Katrina Tax Break Spurs $11 Billion in Donations

  • A Katrina tax break incentive spurs $11 billion in donations to charity.  [New York Times]
  • American Idol's charity fundraiser - "Idol Gives Back" - is expected to bring in millions of dollars for youth in Africa and the U.S.  [Reuters]
  • Fundraising auction of music memorabilia, including items from Jimi Hendrix, Bono, and Bob Dylan, raises $2.4 million.  [Associated Press]

January 31, 2007

As Aid Lags, Volunteers Shoulder Rebuilding on Gulf Coast

Washington Post:  The two-by-fours inside the walls of George and Margaret Ladner's new home are inscribed with biblical verses, each written by one of the Alabama schoolchildren who raised money to buy the lumber.

November 30, 2006

Judge Orders Agency to Restore Aid to Katrina Evacuees

New York Times:  The Federal Emergency Management Agency must restore housing assistance, and pay back rent, to thousands of Hurricane Katrina evacuees who had been deemed ineligible for long-term housing assistance, a federal judge ruled today.

November 15, 2006

Comic Relief to Raise Money for Katrina

Associated Press: Comic Relief, the celebrity-studded fundraising telethon for the homeless, is back, after an 8-year hiatus.

October 02, 2006

Lessons in Online Fundraising from Disaster Relief Organizations

Convio's Vinay Bhagat: The growth in recent years of online contributions to disaster relief organizations clearly illustrates that Web fundraising has come of age. Consider the online giving that American Red Cross has generated following major disasters: $64 million related to the 9/11 terrorist attacks; $140 million in the wake of the Southeast Asian tsunami; and $479 million after Hurricane Katrina. Also telling is that the percentage of individual donor funds raised online (excluding corporate contributions) grew from 29 percent for 9/11 to 55 percent for the tsunami, illustrating that donors have become increasingly comfortable giving over the Internet. Leading disaster relief organizations such as the American Red Cross have been extremely instrumental in catalyzing this growth.

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