VolunteerToday.com ~~ The Electronic Gazette for Volunteerism

NEWS ON VOLUNTEERISM

  • America's Promise in Minnesota
  • What is the Value of Volunteer Time?
  • Seniors Can Sell Online-and Never Own a Computer
  • Guidelines for Corporate Sponsorship
  • Postage Rate Hike Imminent
  • Business is on the Volunteer BandWagon
  • Send "Volunteer Today" Your Recommendations


America's Promise in Minnesota

The Minnesota Alliance with Youth is aggressively tackling the mission of America's Promise to impact the lives of children in their state. A recent newsletter outlined the types of activities designed to fulfill the five promises that are central to the mission of America's Promise. Listed below are just a few of their efforts. For more information on their activities you can visit their Web site (http://www.mnyouth.org).



What is the Value of Volunteer Time?

 Independent Sector announced an increase in the rate for calculating the value of volunteer time. The dollar value is now $14.83 per hour. This amount is calculated by taking the average hourly wage for nonagricultural workers in 1999 as published in the Economic Report of the President (2000 edition), and increasing it by 12% to account for fringe benefits.


Seniors Can Sell Online-and Never Own a Computer

A new web site based in Arlington, VA is poised to help seniors in rural areas sell their crafts online. Geezer.com is a project of Green Thumb, a charity that provide employment opportunities and training to people over the age of 50, who live in rural areas.

In this latest project, they will feature a variety of craft items, pottery, wooden toys, hand-tied fishing lures, and baskets for sale. Unlike other e-commerce businesses, Geezer.com will register vendors who send in pictures of their crafts, as well as those with internet access.

The charity posts the pictures and notifies the vendors when there is a sale. A third party processes payment and the senior is responsible for sending the item to the buyer.

The site does not officially open until May, National Older Americans month. So far there are 75 craftsperson's signed up, with 15 active vendors.


Guidelines for Corporate Sponsorship

Many nonprofit organizations and volunteer programs seek corporate sponsors for a variety of projects, events, and training initiatives. The US Internal Revenue Service has issued proposed regulations to guide the charities. The comment period continues through May 30.

The proposed change to the law explains how a charity can receive "qualified sponsorship payments," that are no unrelated-business taxable income. The new law also addresses the use or acknowledgement of the company's name or logo in connection with an event.

IRS has posted nine detailed examples to explain how it would treat different types of sponsorship arrangements at its Web Site. The same information is available in the March 1 issue of the Federal Register, pp. 11,012-11,019.


Postage Rate Hike Imminent

Some charities are in a lather about proposed postage rate increases. A proposed change would hike the cost of a first class piece by one penny, nonprofit standard mail up 5.6%, and nonprofit periodicals up 11.6%. Magazines, mailed to members, as a member benefit would see a dramatic rate increase.

While lobbyists for direct mail organizations are fighting, it is expected there will be increases and nonprofits are urged too budget for increases to their postage budget.


Business is on the Volunteer BandWagon

A recent report released by the Points of Light Foundation reports a significant increase in employee volunteer programs from 1992 (31%) to 1999 (81%). More employee volunteer programs are part of the overall business plan and 97% of those businesses with such programs say it improves employee teamwork. For more information on this study contact Jeff Hough, Points of Light Foundation, 202-729-8000.


In a related study, the Arizona State University's Nonprofit Management Institute released the results of a new study on the impact of corporate volunteer matching gift programs. The study revealed a strong correlation between the adoption of a corporate-wide volunteer matching gift program and a company's long term success in its industry. For more information contact 480-727-5214 or http://www.asu.edu/xed/npmi.


Send "Volunteer Today" Your Recommendations

Volunteer Today is interested in your input. Are there Web sites you find indispensable? Are there sites you would like us to review for you and others? Do you have volunteer opportunities available on line that we could list on our "Volunteer Opportunities" page? Send your ideas and recommendations to Nancy Macduff at mba@bmi.net. Be sure to give us your name and e-mail address so we can give you credit.


BOOKS ONLINE

The Foundation Center (you can link to their site through the Volunteer Today Internet Resources page) has added a new page to their Web site. On it you can find abridged versions of some of their books on nonprofit management and foundations. There are also quizzes to test your understanding.


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Copyright by Nancy Macduff.

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