Logo of Mission MindedNot long ago, I bumped into an old friend who, as it turned out, is serving as President of the arts nonprofit World Forum For Acoustic Ecology.   This international NPO is a collective spanning the globe that shares a dedication to “exploring the acoustic environment”.  This did not come as a surprise to me, as I know WFAE’s President, Eric Leonardson, to be one of Chicago’s most compelling figures in experimental music, sound and instrument design.

Eric and I go back to our days in audio production and communications for commerce and professional education, years spent capturing the utterances of various figures in business, law, medicine and other arenas.  So it was also not a surprise when he let me know about Mission Minded, a firm that focuses on NPO marketing and communications.  Of particular note is their library of how-to markting guides for nonprofits published as PDFs.

Truly a sound resource.

(Sorry.)

 

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Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

On- and off-line awareness campaign communications people are familiar with the campaign thermometer: that image that shows fundraising progress.  The online version of this can show any value you want; clicks, dollars, signups, you name it.  The YouTube Nonprofit Program has rolled out a new campaign thermometer icon to  allow nonprofits to create a themometer overlay on the bottom of its videos.

NPQ has an article that clears up YouTube’s uneven progress with its special features for nonprofits as well as discusses the new thermometer overlay.  One example of uneven features would be the fact that you can’t track donations with the new thermometer overlay — yet.

 

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(Above: Paul Ryan, nominated for Best Supporting Actor)

Is volunteering letting just anybody in the door?  No.

And when just anybody shows up with their own photographers in tow? Definitely not.

Much of the ethos here at Digital NPO involves vigilance and security.  True, most of that centers on the technology realm, but this morning brings a tremendous demonstration of what even the most unsuspecting charity operation risks when they let just anybody — and their photographers —  into their face-to-face operations.

In this case, “just anybody” happened to be a pandering national politician famous for his casual relationship with the truth who stopped by a northwestern Ohio soup kitchen on his way to the airport, photographers in tow.  His purpose was not to help the poor; the poor had already left.  His purpose was not to help clean up; that had already been done by bona fide staff and volunteers.  His purpose was to appear to help the poor and appear to help clean up.   And to make sure that appearance was run in national media.

Mission accomplished, as the photo shows.  The photo doesn’t show that the panderer is cleaning an already-clean pot and couldn’t muster the concern over the community to get himself to the kitchen in time to actually help.

Some people just can’t be trusted with the reputation of your charity.

In the CNN piece Charity President Unhappy ABout Paul Ryan Soup Kitchen Photo Op, the beleaguered charity’s president spells out what happened and where it leaves his organization: uncomfortably out on a limb with donors.

The head of a northeast Ohio charity says that the Romney campaign last week “ramrodded their way” into the group’s Youngstown soup kitchen so that GOP vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan could get his picture taken washing dishes in the dining hall.

Brian J. Antal, president of the Mahoning County St. Vincent De Paul Society, said that he was not contacted by the Romney campaign ahead of the Saturday morning visit by Ryan, whostopped by the soup kitchen after a town hall at Youngstown State University.

“We’re a faith-based organization; we are apolitical because the majority of our funding is from private donations,” Antal said in a phone interview Monday afternoon. “It’s strictly in our bylaws not to do it. They showed up there, and they did not have permission. They got one of the volunteers to open up the doors.”

He added: “The photo-op they did wasn’t even accurate. He did nothing. He just came in here to get his picture taken at the dining hall.”

Ryan had stopped by the soup kitchen for about 15 minutes on his way to the airport after his Saturday morning town hall in Youngstown. By the time he arrived, the food had already been served, the patrons had left, and the hall had been cleaned.

Upon entering the soup kitchen, Ryan, his wife and three young children greeted and thanked several volunteers, then donned white aprons and offered to clean some dishes. Photographers snapped photos and TV cameras shot footage of Ryan and his family washing pots and pans that did not appear to be dirty.

[...]

Antal, a self-described independent voter, said that he “can’t fault my volunteers” for letting the campaign in but said that the campaign  “didn’t go through the proper channels.”

He noted that the soup kitchen relies on funding from private individuals who might reconsider their support if it appears that the charity is favoring one political candidate over another.

“I can’t afford to lose funding from these private individuals,” he said. “If this was the Democrats, I’d have the same exact problem.”

He added that the incident had caused him “all kinds of grief” and that regardless of whether Ryan had intended to serve food to patrons or wash dishes, he would not have allowed the visit to take place.

“Had they asked for permission, it wouldn’t have been granted. … But I certainly wouldn’t have let him wash clean pans, and then take a picture,” Antal said.

 

Let the cautionary tale spread far and wide among charity operations: train your folks to know if you haven’t vetted them and they’re bringing their own photographer, the correct answer is thanks but no thanks, not here’s your apron.

 

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Straight from the developer comes today’s post from CiviCRM‘s Rajesh about the newest WordPress – CiviCRM integration feature, access control.

This is a big addition to the WordPress-CiviCRM community, as it closes a good bit of the gap between CiviCRM under WordPress vs. under Drupal.  The lack of fine-grained access control in WordPress is a shortcoming that Drupal fans point to constantly when they evaluate WordPress as a content management system and find it lacking.   While WordPress’s strengths as a CMS still add up to make it our favorite for our purposes (and most purposes our clients have) there’s no doubt that access control is something Drupal admins have taken for granted and used to create complex access control schemes to support large organizations under Drupal-CiviCRM, so I’m particularly glad to see it arrive.  The feature will roll out with CiviCRM 4.3 core.

But WordPress lacks the fine grained access control feature, which are very well supported in Drupal and Joomla. In CiviCRM 4.1/4.2 If you want a wordpress user to access CiviCRM, you should give them administrator role, which will allow them to not only access all the CiviCRM Components, but also the administrative pages.

To overcome this drawback in WordPress + CiviCRM, Access Control feature (similar to permissions in Drupal) was developed for WordPress and integrated into CiviCRM core and will be in CiviCRM 4.3 release. This feature is developed as CiviCRM Core and independent of any wordpress plugins (unless you want to create new WP roles). When CiviCRM plugin is activated, all the CiviCRM core/component permissions are injected as wordpress capabilities, so that each WP roles can be assigned different capabilities. By default, Administrator role will have all capabilities (permissions) in CiviCRM and all other roles can be assigned capabilities (permissions) in CiviCRM Navigation Menu >> Administer >> Users and Permissions >> Permissions (Access Control)

CiviCRM Under WordPress new Access Control Screem

 

See more screens and read Rajesh’s whole post here.

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