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Client Spotlight: United Way of Grant County Receives Strategic Planning Grant

  The United Way of Grant County in Marion, Indiana has been chosen to receive an Organizational Effectiveness Grant from the Indiana Youth Institute (IYI) and the Ball Brothers Foundation. The grant includes free strategic planning guidance, consulting, training and professional development services. The United Way impacts and improves lives through partnerships with 14 funded agencies that serve children, family and community in Grant County. The partnerships support 33 programs and initiatives to provide services across the county focused on health, education and financial stability. “I am honored that the United Way of Grant County has been chosen for this grant,” said Alicia Hazelwood, executive director of the agency. “It will help our local board move forward on implementation of

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21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) Grant

  The Indiana Department of Education is accepting applications for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) grant until January 15, 2014. The 21st CCLC program is a federally-funded program that provides at-risk students a safe environment during non-school hours. This program may have one or multiple centers/sites, which may be located in schools, community facilities, or faith-based facilities. Any public or private organization is eligible to apply, including but not limited to: School districts, Charter schools, Schools, Educational consortia, Nonprofit agencies, City or county government agencies, Faith-based organizations, Institutions of higher education, and For-profit organizations.  Approximately $11 million will be available to establish 21st CCLC programs.  Proposals jointly submitted by school(s) and community-based organizations or other private or public entities will

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Promoting Family Engagement to Support Student Success

  An increasing body of research tells us that children whose parents are involved in their education get better grades, are better behaved and have better futures. The challenge often lies in how we engage parents to support their student’s success. Thankfully, we are surrounded by an abundance of resources and experts. Locally, in Indiana, we have the Indiana Partnerships Center (IPC), which works to engage, equip and empower parents to be involved in their student’s education. IPC partners with stakeholders to strengthen parent engagement efforts, promote best practices and advocate for reform. They are our local expert on parent engagement. Nationally, the Harvard Family Research Project (HFRP) is a hub of information that promotes family and community engagement in

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Client Spotlight: Developing a New Program

  Transform Consulting Group is working with the Bureau of Child Care (BCC) division of the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA) to help roll out the Early Education Matching Grant (EEMG) program. This new $2 million grant program will fund child care slots for low-income children, and eligible applicants are Paths to Quality™ Level 3 and 4 programs. The Early Learning Advisory Committee (ELAC) was established in July 2013 by the Indiana General Assembly. Among other duties, the Committee’s responsibilities include recommending to the Bureau of Child Care the procedures, policies, and eligibility criteria for the Early Education Matching Grant (EEMG) program. The ELAC held their first meeting at the end of October, and the new EEMG program was

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Indiana Improves Report Card Scores

The 2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Reading and Mathematics Report Card was released this month. Nationally representative samples of more than 376,000 fourth-graders and 341,000 eighth-graders were assessed in either mathematics or reading. Results are reported for public and private school students in the nation, and for public school students in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Department of Defense schools. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan noted that the report card “provides encouraging but modest signs of progress in reading and math for U.S. students.” Eighth grade reading scores–which have been flat over the last decade–have risen, and achievement among the largest minority group—Hispanic students—is also up. Indiana’s 4th grade mathematics and reading scores have increased by

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Indiana Bicentennial Endorsement & Grant Programs

  In 2016, Indiana will celebrate 200 years of history as a state. Indiana’s Bicentennial Celebration aims to honor our state’s history in a modern way that engages all 6.5 million Hoosiers and leaves a lasting legacy for future generations. This month, the Indiana Bicentennial Commission launched an endorsement process to promote and support external legacy generated by community partners and organizations across the state. Projects are required to meet one of the following criteria: culturally inclusive; creating a legacy for the future; celebratory; and engaging and inspiring to youth and young adults. “From the day we were tasked to lead this important project, we have encouraged communities and groups from across the state to think about ways they can

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The 6 Myths of Nonprofit Management

  Recently, Transform Consulting Group blogged about Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits. While Forces for Good focuses on these practices, the book also notes that there are also pervasive myths in the industry about what nonprofits should be doing. While these underlying organizational issues are worthy of some consideration, they don’t determine whether an organization has true effectiveness. Perpetuating these myths allows us to focus too much on process rather than on impact. These 6 myths of nonprofit management include: Myth #1: A Nonprofit Needs Perfect Management. Although adequate management is necessary, it is not sufficient for creating significant social impact. Myth #2: A Cause Should Have Brand-Name Awareness. For some, traditional mass marketing is a critical

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Transformational Organization: Summer Advantage USA

  Today, we’re highlighting the work of a Transformational Organization: Summer Advantage USA, an Indianapolis-based nonprofit that is having a national impact on education. In partnership with schools, every summer this program provides thousands of scholars in elementary and middle school with research-based learning programs that will close the gap on summer learning loss. These programs are focused on academic gains, maximizing learning time, outstanding instruction and mentoring, parental involvement, skill building and fun activities. Summer Advantage USA’s rigorous evaluation measurements show that student participation in these quality summer learning programs makes a 5 month difference annually in their learning achievements (that is, a two month gain in skills, rather than the 3 month loss usually seen over the summer

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The 6 Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits

  First published six years ago and now recently revised and updated, a “go to” read for nonprofits is Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits. The book teaches that becoming a high-impact nonprofit is not just about building a stand-alone organization that delivers great service, rather high-impact nonprofits work with and through organizations and individuals outside themselves to create more impact than they ever could have achieved alone. The authors believe that without more nonprofits, businesses, and government agencies following these six practices to achieve maximum impact, we are doomed to plod along with slow, incremental social change. Similar to our discussion of the Good to Great principles for creating sustained impact, research from Forces for Good

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Transformational Organization: The Patachou Foundation

Today, we’re highlighting the work of a Transformational Organization: The Patachou Foundation. While those in Central Indiana may associate the name, Patachou, with the well-known and delicious Café Patachou restaurants, the company is using its food passion and talent to make an impact in the community. The Foundation uses the PATATRUCK mobile Patachou kitchen to take healthy after-school snacks to children impacted by homelessness and hunger and help them to learn about real food and nutrition. One in four Hoosier children, or about 388,000, struggle with hunger, which also puts those children at continuing risk for homelessness. This summer, Patachou’s founder, Martha Hoover, discussed with the Indianapolis Star her disappointment with the impact and outcomes of her company’s philanthropic giving, and

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