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Idealist events in NYC this month

September 8, 2011

A prospective grad student speaks with an admissions professional at last year's NYC Idealist Grad Fair.

Labor Day has come and gone, there’s a chill in the air, and our New York office is abuzz. Here are a couple of reasons why:

  • We’re piloting a new initiative and we’d love to have you involved. If you identify as a connector; if you believe good ideas can and should spread more quickly; and if you believe that with all of the resources available to us, we should be able to do much more to address the problems around us, please take a look and follow this new blog:
  • Our Idealist Grad Fair team is about to kick off their 18-city fall tour, starting in NYC next Thursday, Sept. 15. If you’re thinking about going to grad school to further your social impact career, please join us from 5-8pm that night at NYU’s Metropolitan Pavilion. The event is free and open to the public; it helps us greatly when you RSVP here.

And of course, there’s lots more happening. Follow us on Twitter, fan us on Facebook, or subscribe to our Idealist Blog to stay in the loop.


On Hiatus, and a Quick Shout-Out

October 15, 2010

You might have noticed that things have been quiet around here. We’re cooking up some new projects at Idealist’s NYC office and hope to be back soon.

In the meantime, keep an eye on – we’re re-launching our  website shortly and hope to see you there. And we’ll leave the blogroll up so you can continue to connect with and help good ideas travel around the five boroughs.

We also want to thank our Idealist in NYC editor emeritus Joanna Eng, who recently moved on to pursue what is sure to be a brilliant freelance writing/editing career after five wonderful years at Idealist. We miss you, Jojo!

Over 21,000 New York Nonprofits at Risk

July 29, 2010

Today on Idealist’s main blog, we issued a second warning about a new tax law that many nonprofits have apparently not caught wind of yet. Put Barber explains:

New rules passed in 2006 require nearly every exempt organization (houses of worship are the exception) to [file a Form 990]; previously, only organizations with more than $25,000 in annual revenues needed to do it.

An organization that misses three years in a row will be automatically removed from the list of approved tax-exempt organizations.

featuredJust before last May’s deadline, about 200,000 organizations were in danger of failing to file three years in a row. But here’s the good news:

The IRS is offering one more chance to avoid that unhappy outcome. An organization that files the necessary report between now and October 15 of this year will be considered to have met the deadline.

A lot of the organizations that seem to have missed the May 17 date are listed on these files from the IRS. You can check pretty quickly to see whether your organization, or one you care about, needs to pay attention to this new deadline to avoid the expense and extra work of re-applying for exemption later on.

A quick glance at the list for New York State shows that we have over 21,000 nonprofits who haven’t filed for the past three years.

So, in case you haven’t gotten the point yet… file that 990 ASAP! The Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York offers an explanation of the form itself.

Bring Your Own Cause

July 26, 2010

featuredThis summer, the community development organization Community Lab has been running a series of happy hours in NYC around the theme of global development. The networking events, called Bring Your Own Cause (B.Y.O.C.), bring together nonprofit professionals, students, and anyone else interested in the topic. As the name implies, the theme of global development is left intentionally broad and open, and your participation is encouraged no matter what your specialty is.

There are only two left for the season, on July 29 and August 12. The July 29 event will feature three organizations: Women’s Education Project, Hemma, and Earth Intelligence Network. There will be an element of healthy competition, as the featured organization that receives the most votes via text message during the event will get a prize from Community Lab.

Community Lab is looking for more organizations to become co-hosts or Featured Causes. If you’re interested, get in touch on Twitter or Facebook.

Reach Queens Residents in Five Languages

July 22, 2010

featuredWe just got a letter in the mail about a free translation service offered to nonprofit organizations in Queens. Thanks to the Translation Program of the Asian/American Center of Queens College, nonprofits based in the city’s most diverse borough can now reach more people with written materials in Chinese, Hindi, Korean, and Spanish.

The program offers to translate up to four pages from English into any of the four target languages. Click here for more details about how your organization can make use of these services.

Chinese, Hindi, Korean, and Spanish only begin to crack the surface of the linguistic diversity of Queens (in the 2000 Census, 138 languages were reported to be spoken in the borough). But it’s a great start!

Share Your Expertise: RISE Conference Proposals Due July 30

July 19, 2010

featuredI learned about the RISE Conference, an annual event organized by a grassroots collective of social workers and activists, exactly a year ago when Joanna asked me to blog about it here. Intrigued by the lineup of speakers and workshop topics, I registered to attend myself. I found the conference to be a very powerful experience and have since gotten involved as a volunteer—and here I am again, just 12 months later, inviting you (yes, you!) to submit a proposal to host a workshop at this year’s convening!

The conference organizers expect at least 300 people to gather on October 23 in Harlem to talk about how social work students and professionals can become more effective agents of social change. If your values are aligned with those of RISE, and you have skills or knowledge to share with this community, consider submitting a proposal to present at the conference. Proposals are due July 30; learn more here.

Accessible Art: Putting Pianos on the Streets and Keys in the Hands of the Public

June 21, 2010

These two city-wide public art projects make me even more excited for summer:

Play Me, I’m Yours: Sixty pianos have been placed in parks and streets across all five boroughs, just waiting for you to play them. What a democratic way to let people experiment, perform, learn, and listen; not to mention a fun new way to “play” outside. It’s a project of Sing for Hope, a nonprofit that involves professional artists in volunteer programs that aim to benefit youth, hospital patients, and the public.

featuredKey to the City: Based on the idea of the symbolic “key to the city” once reserved for dignitaries, now anyone can get a key that will open 24 doors around the five boroughs. The keys give you access to secret rooms in museums, restaurants, parks, houses of worship, even a politician’s office. Keys are being given out through June 27 in Times Square, where participants ceremonially bestow keys and compliments on each other. Not everyone will get a chance to stand in line to receive a key, so key-copying is also encouraged.


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