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ASPR Supports Grade-Level Reading

The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading (CGLR) announced the communities that are Pacesetters for their work during 2019 to support early school success. A collaborative effort by funders, nonprofit partners, business leaders, government agencies, states and communities to ensure that more children in low-income families succeed in school and graduate prepared for college, a career and active citizenship, CGLR focuses on promoting early school success as an important building block of more hopeful futures for children in economically challenged families and communities.

“We applaud the civic leaders and local funders whose time, talent, energy and imagination have fueled progress in these Pacesetter Communities,” says Ralph Smith, managing director of CGLR. “Mobilized communities — like these Pacesetters — support our big bet on the problem-solving potential of proximity.”

Pacesetters’ Journey

The process began in January when CGLR invited communities to file stories on its Community Learning for Impact & Improvement Platform (CLIP), using 16 categories that served as “tags” for each story when it was published on CLIP.

CGLR then asked the 112 communities that responded to self-nominate for Pacesetter Honors for one or more of their stories submitted for the What’s Working Community Challenge.

CGLR received self-nominations of 214 stories from 50 communities representing 23 states and one Canadian province. The nominated stories were considered, sorted and ranked by panels of community-based peer reviewers. By the end of the process, there were 2,000 story reviews filed by close to 400 peer reviewers.

“The commitment to peer review is a unique and important aspect of the Pacesetter Recognition process,” says Smith. “They bring a combination of local knowledge and real-world experience that adds heft and credibility to the Pacesetter Recognition process.”

Pacesetter Communities

CGLR recognizes the following 21 communities as recipients of 2019 Pacesetter Honors for “Mobilizing for Success” and “Deploying Innovative Strategies and Tools.” Click on the name of the community to be taken to that community’s profile page on CLIP, where its stories are available in the “Community Stories” section.

Avondale, AZ

Broward County, FL

Indian River County, FL

Miami-Dade County, FL

Palm Beach County, FL

Suncoast, FL

Council Bluffs, IA

Dubuque, IA

Grinnell, IA

Quad Cities, IA and IL

Sioux City, IA

Story County, IA

Shawnee County, KS

New Orleans, LA

Springfield, MA

Kansas City, MO

Durham County, NC

Nash and Edgecombe Counties, NC

Lehigh Valley, PA

Black Hills, SD

Virginia Beach, VA

CGLR recognizes the following 29 communities as Pacesetter Finalists for “Moving the Needle in Impact Areas.” After a second round of reviews later this summer, the Campaign will announce Pacesetter Honors in these categories in September.

Tempe, AZ

Stockton-San Joaquin County, CA

Hartford, CT

Broward County, FL

Delray Beach, FL

Indian River County, FL

Miami-Dade County, FL

Palm Beach County, FL

Suncoast, FL

Whitfield County, GA

Cedar Rapids, IA

Des Moines, IA

Grinnell, IA

Quad Cities, IA and IL

Sioux City, IA

Story County, IA

Shawnee County, KS

New Orleans, LA

Springfield, MA

Southeast Mississippi, MS

Durham County, NC

Nash and Edgecombe Counties, NC

New York City, NY

Lehigh Valley, PA

Philadelphia, PA

Nashville, TN

Salt Lake (Clearfield, Kearns, Park City and South Salt Lake), UT

Roanoke, VA

Virginia Beach, VA

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About the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading

 

Launched in 2010, the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading is a collaborative effort of funders, nonprofit partners, business leaders, government agencies, states and communities across the nation to ensure that many more children from low-income families succeed in school and graduate prepared for college, a career and active citizenship. Since its launch, CGLR has grown to include more than 300 communities, representing 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and two provinces in Canada — with 5,000+ local organizations and 510 state and local funders (including 200+ United Ways). To learn more, visit gradelevelreading.net and follow the movement on Twitter @readingby3rd.

 

 

A Time to Learn and Do More

We were proud to join Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser and other supporters of the right to free speech and peaceful protest as we all proclaimed Black Lives Matter and celebrated the dramatic street art in front of the White House. We’re following the best advice of our friends and allies by using this as a time to listen and better understand. There will be future opportunities to share additional feedback.

ASPR Client Serves as Community Leader

An update from the Catalogue: On #GivingTuesdayNow, we raised over $575,000 for small to mid-sized nonprofits serving the DC region. Thank you to everybody who donated at givelocaltogether.org and supported our nonprofit community!

Catalogue for Philanthropy Announces Local Day of Giving in Response to COVID-19

Catalogue to Host Campaign for Small to Mid-Sized Nonprofits in the Greater Washington Region

 

Washington, D.C., (April 6, 2020) – The Catalogue for Philanthropy is announcing a community fundraising campaign supporting local nonprofits as part of #GivingTuesdayNow, an international day of generosity in response to COVID-19. As the official GivingTuesday community partner for the Greater Washington region, the Catalogue will host its campaign, Give Local Together, in partnership with GivingTuesday and will make it available to its partner nonprofits, as well as other small-to-mid-sized organizations in the DC metro area.

 

We recognize these are challenging and uncertain times for all of us. However,  in times of crisis, we are called to respond with generosity rather than fear. During our individual isolation, community becomes more, not less, important. And we need you to support  this community-to make a difference, close to home.

 

Local nonprofits continue to work each day, even in the midst of this crisis, to support our local communities, from providing basic services to our most vulnerable neighbors, to providing healthcare to those in need, to creating inspiring art that we are proud to have in our region. And the most urgent need many of them face right now is the need for funds and resources to ensure their critical programs continue both during this crisis and thereafter. To respond to this urgent need, we are proud to announce our participation in #GivingTuesdayNow, a global day of giving and unity, set to take place on Tuesday, May 5, 2020.

 

We are proud to stand with the GivingTuesday movement and partner  with  them once again through our local campaign, Give Local Together, to demonstrate the ability of generosity to heal and empower our local communities.

 

“It’s the Catalogue’s mission to shine a light on and support those organizations that are doing the hard work to help the vulnerable among us. With the spread of COVID-19, the nonprofit community is confronted with an unprecedented challenge, one that threatens not only the critical services they provide, but also the organizations themselves,” says Aaron Gonzales, co­ Executive Director of the Catalogue for Philanthropy.

 

Later this week, you’ll be able to read about and support participating local nonprofits at givelocaltogethe r.org. Each of these organizations need your help so we encourage you to find a cause that speaks to you. During a challenging time for us all, every gift matters.

 

 

If you are a local nonprofit interested in being involved in the campaign, you can apply here. Any local 501(c)3 nonprofit with an annual budget under $4 million can participate if they typically provide direct community services in the DMV region. All applying organizations outside of the Catalogue network will go  through light  programmatic  and financial vetting before inclusion  in the campaign.

 

On behalf of the entire Catalogue staff and board, we wish you, your colleagues, family, and friends all the best and hope you and they remain healthy and safe.

 

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About the Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington

The Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington is the region’s only locally-focused guide to giving and volunteering. We  believe in the power of small nonprofits  to spark big change.  Our goal is to  create visibility for our  charities, fuel their growth with philanthropic  dollars, and create  a movement for social good in our region. Since 2003, the Catalogue has raised more than $43 million for our network of vetted charities. We  highlight  the  best  local  nonprofits,  and  their work, to show what is possible when caring citizens connect  with worthy  causes,  acting together on behalf of the greater good. Our vision is a stronger, more resilient community, here, where we live.

Nonprofit Resources in the Coronavirus Age

During this unprecedented time, we’re proud to support and work with a number of nonprofits that are stepping up with resources to help us all:

  • The Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington is a nonprofit that has created a network of over 400 vetted small nonprofits in the nation’s capital. All the nonprofits go through a review process, at no cost, that consists of the following questions: What need is a nonprofit meeting? Is it doing so with excellence? Are its finances sound? What impact, concretely measurable or harder to measure, is it having on the community it serves? The Catalogue allows donors to give with confidence to organizations that work every day in local neighborhoods.
  • The American Pops Orchestra is offering music to soothe nerves while also supporting musicians and performers facing a loss of their incomes. APO was founded to breathe new life into orchestral pops programming and inspire new audiences to discover the wealth of material in the Great American Songbook in dynamic ways.
  • The Council for Professional Recognition is providing important guidance to early childhood educators around the world. The Council oversees the Child Development Associate credential, which is based on a core set of competency standards that guide early care professionals as they work toward becoming qualified teachers of young children.

Other clients are doing their part as well and we look forward to sharing those details soon.

Impeachment in Person

As a reporter covering murder trials, I never felt the need to add drama to the story—it was already there. A person’s freedom was on the line and two opposing camps of lawyers were duking it before the judge and jurors.

That intense feeling returned to me Friday as I had the incredible opportunity to sit in the visitors’ gallery at the U.S. Senate and watch the impeachment trial of President Donald J. Trump.

While his physical freedom doesn’t hang in the balance, his political life does. I also don’t believe it’s a slam dunk acquittal case; there are still too many unknowns unknows (to paraphrase Don Rumsfeld). Take, for instance, the news about John Bolton’s book revelations that there was a quid pro quo.

My desire in this blog is to share observations from watching the proceedings; to highlight things you can’t see from the TV screen. For instance, I was astounded by the juvenile behavior of Trump attorney Jay Sekulow as Rep. Garcia was speaking. He was rolling his eyes, mocking her and basically trying to intimidate her. It was beneath the dignity of the moment.

There also was a long period of time when Sekulow and lead defense attorney Pat Cipollone left the chamber. Perhaps Trump was calling them. Whatever the case, I thought it bizarre that they would exit right as the House managers were beginning to present the second article of impeachment for obstruction of Congress. If you are on trial, you want your lawyers in the “courtroom” at all times.

There have already been reports about the lackluster attendance by Republican senators during the trial. At one point about one-third of the Republican senators were missing during my time in the Senate. Again, one wonders what other business did they have to attend to that was so much more important than impeachment?

What hasn’t been shared is that the press gallery appears to be very empty, at least while I was in the room. I guess journalists feel they get better visuals and audio by watching it online or on cable. Yet something seems to be missing if you aren’t “in the room where it happens.”

I saw Majority Leader McConnell flipping through a ringed notebook during the trial; it didn’t appear whatever he was reading related to what was happening on the floor. Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska seemed very serious; she realizes eyes are on her. Sen. Romney seemed happy go lucky; I guess a positive attitude is good to have.

As someone who used to work in TV, let me add this observation as well: the proceedings would look better if the cameras were eye level to the speakers on the floor. The fact the cameras are up so high creates high angle shots that tend to distort the actual interactions on the Senate floor.

My composure and attitude throughout the afternoon were consistent: I was somber and downbeat. This is a sad time for America. I took no joy in watching this part of our country’s history unfold.