Latest News for Nonprofits

Solid green circle with a blank calendar icon in the centerWe've got a lot of exciting webinars, town halls, and celebrations coming up!  

We Draw the Lines: What CA Nonprofits and Funders Need to Know About Redistricting 
Wednesday, June 16 at 10am. 
*This webinar will be recorded and available on the California Policy Forum page.

This webinar is part of the California Policy Forum series presented in partnership with Philanthropy California and the California League of Community Foundations.

Employee Retention Tax Credit: what is it and how do we qualify?
Friday, June 18 at 11am
Free, but RSVP required
*This webinar will be recorded and the link to the recording will be sent to all registrants.

Town Hall with California Senator Limón and Assemblymember Bennett, for nonprofits in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties
Friday, June 25 at 11am

Returning to the Workplace: Legal Do's and Don'ts for Nonprofits (free for members / $35 for not-yet-members)
Wednesday, June 30 at 12pm
Register now!
*This webinar will NOT be recorded. You must attend the live session to get the information.

What else is going on?

We'll announce the results of the Board of Directors Election on Monday, June 11th. (As a membership organization, 2/3 of our board seats are elected by our full members.)

This year California Nonprofits Day is June 23rd, and we'll be celebrating all of the nonprofit honorees virtually. Follow us on Twitter @calnonprofits to celebrate with us!

CalNonprofits Members Meeting on July 21st at 11am.

2021 Policy Convention will be in November (check out the impressive speakers and engaging sessions at last year's 3-day event).

Become a member!

CalNonprofits members strengthen our collective voice in Sacramento and with philanthropy, and the public. Members also get exclusive benefits like free webinars, health insurance for employees and liability insurance for organizations from CalNonprofits Insurance Services, a free subscription to the human resources library and a hotline from Mineral (formerly ThinkHR), and much more!

Find out more and join online today, or contact Karina Paredes-Arzola at karinap[at]calnonprofits[dot]org or 415.710.4332 for more information.

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You'll get updates about our events and celebrations, new government funding opportunities, and advocacy alerts when it's time for legislators and other policymakers to stand up for our communities. Sign up now!

poppies in a fieldRather than make a proposal and advocate for its adoption, this article looks at some of the varied developments in the emerging movement to change/reform foundation and donor-advised-fund giving. CalNonprofits continues to participate in and to learn from many strands in this movement. 


With re-opening and global affairs dominating the news, it might be easy to overlook the emerging movement to transform institutional philanthropy. The movement carries ideas for delivering more funds to nonprofits, curbing mega-wealth, altering the charitable tax deduction, and more. 

We are potentially at a pivotal moment, one that was perhaps inevitable given how big philanthropy has become and the degree to which inequality is deepening.

"Philanthropy is having a reckoning," said Edgar Villaneuva, author of Decolonizing Wealth, at a recent national town hall on philanthropic reform.

Foundations and Donor-Advised Funds (DAFs) are big business

Today, nearly 120,000 U.S. foundations hold $1.2 trillion in assets. Although donor-advised funds (DAFs) began in community foundations, today the field is dominated by funds associated with global investment funds such as Fidelity, Schwab, and Vanguard. DAFs now receive 13% of donations made by individuals, and just one donor-advised sponsor – Fidelity Charitable – receives more donations than any other nonprofit in the U.S.

Because only a small share of the dollars in those foundations and DAFs flow to nonprofits, the mainstream press is raising questions that were once discussed mainly among nonprofit leaders or in the nonprofit press.

Last June, for example, the Washington Post published an article examining donor-advised funds, declaring that, "The rich have stashed billions in donor-advised charities – but it's not reaching those in need.” Forbes announced in September that it changed its criteria for identifying the "most generous" Americans, no longer counting donations to private foundations or to donor-advised funds in their calculations – indicating their recognition that since the donors still effectively retain control of the funds, they aren't a good measure for "generosity."

In another example of skepticism about DAFs, the temporary universal charitable deduction of $300 passed last spring in the Cares Act explicitly excluded donations to private foundations and to donor-advised funds.

An emerging movement

Overall, we are seeing the emergence of a movement to overhaul how philanthropy works – and like any movement in its early stages, it is decentralized and disparate, with all kinds of ideas springing up. Some of the ideas will become important themes, and others will be discarded. At the beginning of other movements, we have seen similar enthusiasm and energy combined with skepticism and competition among points of view, so it’s worth paying close attention to these debates.

Many efforts focus on donor-advised funds (DAFs), popular financial/giving vehicles where individuals obtain an immediate tax deduction for their donation to a DAF (often held by nonprofit affiliates of commercial investment firms such as Fidelity or Vanguard, or by community foundations, universities, and other institutions). The funds can stay in the DAF indefinitely, awaiting donor instructions ("recommendations"). 

COVID-19 resources for California Nonprofits
In our efforts to support nonprofits and their staff, we have compiled this list of resources. More to come as we find them!

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Causes Count - New Findings is now available! Learn about the economic impact of California nonprofits, disparities within our sector, and our deep interdependency with government.
 
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our upcoming events
 
We Draw the Lines: What CA Nonprofits and Funders Need to Know About Redistricting
Join us to learn more about the redistricting process and timeline, ways redistricting affects our communities and strategies for nonprofits and funders to get involved. California Policy Forum webinars are a collaboration of Philanthropy California (Catalyst of San Diego & Imperial Counties, Northern California Grantmakers, and Southern California Grantmakers), and the League of California Community Foundations.
Wednesday, June 16 at 10am (Pacific)

More details and RSVP
The Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC): What is it and how do we qualify?
Learn about the ERTC, if your organization qualifies, and how much you could save on payroll taxes (up to $33,000 per employee!).
Friday, June 18 at 11am (Pacific)

More details and RSVP
California Government Grants: Where to Find Them and How to Get Them
In partnership with CA Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, SELA Collaborative, and the California State Library Government Grants Portal, Lucy Salcido Carter and Jan Masaoka will show participants how to navigate the government grants portal and how to apply for government grants.
Tuesday, June 29 at 11am (Pacific)

More details and RSVP
Returning to the Workplace: Legal Do's and Don'ts for Nonprofits
In this webinar, our experts will discuss the latest guidelines and requirements for nonprofits looking to bring staff back to in-person workplaces.
Wednesday, June 30 at 12pm (Pacific)

More details registration