March 21, 2023
Elevating community voice in grantmaking
by Dr. Kaz Rafia and Trenae Simpson, contributors to NonProfit Pro

It was a well-intentioned pursuit: a major hospital using its resources to create a program to improve access to HPV vaccines for women of color at a community health center.

As the hospital invested time and capital to develop a program it believed was designed for the center’s patient population, they were missing one critical factor: they never asked what the HPV immunization rates were among the target population at the health center.

When the hospital presented the community health center with its fully formed plan, staff explained that their immunization rates were already more than 90%. This hospital had developed an entire program based on preconceived notions, not on the community’s actual needs.

This is a prime, true example of why community voice is so vital in philanthropic efforts. It highlights the poor outcomes when the process of developing solutions excludes the very population at the center of the intended impact — and why it is critical to engage the community meaningfully from the onset and throughout the process.

Working with communities to find solutions 

The unfortunate reality is that those most impacted by inequities have historically been — and continue to be — denied the opportunity to influence and drive the development of solutions.

Developing board members as fundraisers:
5 key strategies
by Lee Ernst, Senior Consultant, Johnson, Grossnickle, and Associates

Every board member has a role to play in making your organization’s fundraising efforts successful. Board members guide the future of your organization and its sustained ability to carry out the mission. Strong board members are also vital to helping your organization navigate opportunities and challenges that arise.

To help board members build passion and support for your mission, engage them and structure board activities with these five key strategies in mind:


Board members will be much more successful when they are educated about and trained in their fundraising role. Provide members orientation and ongoing opportunities that include:

  • Creating an environment and culture that supports the open discussion;
  • Fundraising 101 — providing deeper understanding and ideas about philanthropy’s role in your organization’s success; sharing fundraising resources, such as brief articles and presentations;
  • Creating opportunities for board members to assist with identifying donors and making cultivation visits; and asking board members to discuss the organization with at least two friends or prospects between board meetings.

Red flags to help you prevent business email compromise
Cyber scams are on the rise – and many target business emails. According to the FBI, business email compromise (BEC) is a “sophisticated scam that targets both businesses and individuals who perform legitimate transfer-of-funds requests.” In BEC scams, a criminal poses as a financial institution, business executive, or supplier to gain financial information from another business’s employees. This scam can cost your business thousands — or more. Understanding how BECs work and what to watch for can help prevent these losses.

First, scammers gain access to a business email account through invasive malware. For example, they may steal a legitimate email address or spoof an account by making a similar one. Next, the scammers use that email address to contact one of the victim’s business partners or employees – this is where you might get scammed. Finally, the scammer convinces the other party to initiate a wire transfer. Because the transfer request comes from a legitimate account, it’s harder for banks to spot this fraud.

You can prevent BEC scams by watching for the following red flags in emails you receive from clients or partners.

Unusual language. Grammar errors, odd phrases, and generally odd language can indicate that someone is impersonating the email sender. Compare the email to others you’ve received from the individual to verify its authenticity.

Re-released Join Bryan Orander in a conversation with Maureen Weber, CEO of Early Learning Indiana. Weber talks about how early education providers in Indiana navigated the COVID crisis more successfully than most states but a shortage of workers is keeping many centers from operating at full capacity. She also gives an update on a new online tool that helps families find childcare and early education options. Listen
Lilly Endowment has named Julie Whitman program director. Previously, Whitman was executive director at the Commission on Improving the Status of Children in Indiana.
Southeast Neighborhood Development has named Bronti McLellan as property manager. McLellan previously was an administrative assistant at TECHLITE Corp.
The National Urban League has granted Tindley Accelerated Schools $200,000 during the second round of funding for the Indianapolis African American Quality of Life Initiative. Proceeds will support a college and career readiness program for Tindley alumni who are actively enrolled in college. Read more

Brightlane Learning, formerly School on Wheels, has raised $103,000 with the support of more than 700 donors and volunteers during its annual Do the Bright Thing event. The funds will be used to support efforts to empower a record number of students experiencing housing insecurity and homelessness. Read more

The Junior League of Indianapolis has awarded Visually Impaired Preschool Services $5,000 to support the Early Childhood Intervention Program. The initiative provides in-home, vision specific intervention to babies and toddlers who are blind or visually impaired in the Indianapolis community. Learn more

The Community Equity Data Initiative, previously the Grassroots and Faith-Based Data Initiative, has identified seven nonprofit and faith-based organizations for a year-long program designed to assist them with the tools and insights to leverage data to benefit their clients. Read more

The Indiana Arts Commission and the Indiana Department of Education are partnering to expand classroom teaching and improve student outcomes through arts and creativity. The joint initiative is designed to use the arts to enhance teaching strategies, boost student retention, and improve literacy skills and student engagement. Learn more

Mapt Solutions has named Happy Hollow Children’s Camp as its inaugural $100K Transformation Challenge winner. The nonprofit camp will receive a $75,000 grant for strategic planning services and $25,000 in cash to support the implementation of its plans. Read more

Early Learning Indiana is accepting applications for grants to help infants and toddlers develop foundational knowledge and skills that support their future learning and development. Proposals are due June 15. Apply
Using data to improve online fundraising webinar on March 28 at noon. Learn how to make the most of digital data, even without a big budget. Presented by Chronical of Philanthropy. Cost: Free. Register

Insights on foundations: Mission & the board on March 28 from 1 p.m.-2 p.m. Identify best practices for helping successive family generations engage with the family foundation board. Presented by FORVIS. Cost: Free. Register

Women’s Philanthropy Institute' 6th annual symposium on March 28-29 in Chicago. Learn how women’s involvement in philanthropy strengthens communities, encourages greater strategic giving, and builds a more diverse network of engaged citizens. Presented by Women’s Philanthropy Institute. Cost: $925. Register

IU McKinney Law virtual Master of Jurisprudence information session on March 30 at 7 p.m. for those interested in applying to start law school in the fall of 2021. The one-hour session outlines the steps in the application process. Register

2023 Business Software Refresher Series: PowerPoint (Part 2) workshop on March 31 from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. This two-hour, in-person session provides attendees more insights about advance features of PowerPoint. Presented by IUPUI Professional Development & Continuing Education. Cost: $75. Register

Frame the problem SAVI data literacy workshop on April 6 from 9 a.m.-11 a.m., Room 407, IU School of Informatics and Computing. Learn simple techniques for designing meaningful questions that produce clear and actionable answers; the process of defining project goals; and identifying the questions and data needed to achieve them. Presented by SAVI Data Literacy. Register
AmeriCorps Seniors is seeking to expand volunteer opportunities through new service sites. Activities can include having volunteers serve in your food pantry, visiting with home bound veterans, and hosting a sewing circle to create blankets for the homeless. Learn more and apply
The Urban Institute finds that organizations designed specifically to help nonprofits often face financial challenges and a lack of resources.
Burnout among CEOs and other executives ranks high on the list of reasons that organizations adopt co-leadership models.
Our sponsor marketplace serves to further connect our readers with our advertisers who are focused on serving nonprofits. To learn about each sponsor's nonprofit services, click on its logo.

Nonprofit office space in great location (Near Butler University)
Indiana Interchurch Center, which is centrally located in Indianapolis at 1100 W. 42nd St., has available office spaces ranging from 200 to 1,600 square feet for 501(c)3 organizations. Free parking, utilities, high-speed internet, and shared meeting rooms are included. The facility is home to a diverse group of nonprofit and church organizations that are making an impact in the community. Contact Kris Keys or call (317) 923-3617.
Coworking office memberships available (Northwest side)
Enhance your productivity and meet like-minded people at Nexus’ shared coworking space. Nexus offers month-to-month memberships for open desks and dedicated desks. Memberships include meeting room credits, access to high-speed internet, and free printing, and coffee. Besides having a great place to work, you’ll connect with small business owners and nonprofit employees that care about making a positive difference in their communities. Coworking office memberships range from $59/month to $149/month. Learn more
Executive Leadership (CEO/ED/COO)

President and Chief Executive Officer - Girls Inc. of Greater Indianapolis

Executive Director - Indianapolis Youth Orchestra

Chief Marketing Officer - National Panhellenic Conference

Fund Development/Marketing/PR/Advocacy

Director of Development - Burmese American Community Institute

Donor Relations Associate - Boys & Girls Club of Noblesville

Director of Donor Advancement - Community Foundation Of Boone County

Director of Development - Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana

Admin Support/Clerical

Donor Relations Specialist - Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis

Executive Assistant - Indiana Landmarks

First Impressions Associate - Central Indiana Community Foundation

Executive Assistant - ULLI Urban Legacy Lands Initiative Inc.


Facilities Manager – Tabernacle

Staff Accountant - Indianapolis Public Schools

Programs/Program Support

Case Manager – Unconditional

Program Manager for Public Allies Indianapolis - Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center

Family Service Program Coordinator - Indianapolis Urban League

Senior Planner, Environmental - City of Fishers

Administrative Coordinator - Umoja Partnership, Inc

Community Leadership Officer - Central Indiana Community Foundation

Support Services Manager - Sheltering Wings

Case Manager - Sheltering Wings

ReStore General Manager – Retail - Greater Indy Habitat ReStore

Food Pantry Manager - Indianapolis Urban League

Program and Volunteer Engagement Specialist - United Way of Johnson County

JA JobSpark Coordinator - Junior Achievement of Central Indiana

Talent Specialist - Christel House Indianapolis

Assistant Program Officer, Workforce and Health Equity - Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC)