Happy June 24th! We’re dancing for joy that it’s Friday.
On this day in 1374, a sudden outbreak of St. John's Dance caused people in the streets of Aachen, Germany, to experience hallucinations and begin to jump and twitch uncontrollably until they collapsed from exhaustion. In some cases, people suffered from cardiac arrest or died from injuries.
We would like to revise and amend our opening paragraph: we are… sitting with joy that it’s Friday. Calmly.
Here are five must-reads (one of them is actually a must-watch) from and about the nonprofit world:
1) Osocio is a central online hub dedicated to social advertising, defined as advertising from nonprofit organizations that seeks to connect us with other human beings. The embedded video from Agency Jung von Matt/Limmat AG does a great job of visualizing what it’s like to live with fear and significant anxiety. Anxiety is an ‘invisible’ illness, and the two agencies are doing important work to illustrate that people may be dealing with burdens and challenges we know nothing about and encouraging us to think more broadly about mental health:
Learn more about Osocio here: http://osocio.org/about-osocio/
2) Can spreadsheets really get you fired? If they’re combined with hubris and overconfidence, absolutely. Brian Lauterbach at Network for Good digs into his own past so that you can learn from his mistakes and avoid a similar fate:
3) If you’re a board member who’s wondering how to lean in towards board activity or looking for ways to make your nonprofit better, this blog has some great suggestions for you—everything from learning staff members’ names to insisting to the executive director that “Yes, it is totally acceptable for you to buy a better chair so you won’t be suffering from constant back pain.” Read all about it:
(There’s also a great link in the 25 Awesome Things article to another article on why the Oxford Comma is so essential. #OxfordCommaForever! http://nonprofitwithballs.com/2016/04/the-role-of-the-oxford-comma-in-nonprofit-communications/ )
4) Culture, culture, culture. The disastrous collapse of the Healing Arts Initiative, a New York City-based nonprofit that made arts accessible to isolated and marginalized people, should remind everyone that even if you’ve got a badass executive director who can ferret out corruption like a private eye, it’s all for nothing if you don’t have the right culture in place:
5) Shane Bauer (the American journalist who spent two years in prison in Iran) worked with The Mother Jones Investigative Fund to go undercover as a U.S. prison guard at a privately-run (vs. government-run) prison in Louisiana to expose the prison industrial complex. Bauer’s article is thorough, phenomenal and deeply disconcerting:
This has been the Friday Five. Join us next week for help staying on top of pertinent nonprofit articles, topics , and insights, and remember to contact us (link to firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have any questions about your own nonprofit or board!