BTW informing change



informing change is excited to share new research and discussion topics that are the result of our work over the past few months. We find these topics interesting and relevant to advancing the philanthropic and nonprofit fields, and we want to share our current learnings with you!

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Paging Dr. Oz... What Do Californians Need to Know About Health Care Reform?

The California Endowment - Dr. Oz: Find out what the new health law can do for you

Courtesy of The California Endowment

After seeing The California Endowment's television advertisement featuring Dr. Mehmet Oz (of Oprah fame), Lande Ajose takes a moment to appreciate the Endowment's stand on a current and contentious topic--the new health care reform law. Join her in conversation about how foundations and nonprofits can take a stand on policy issues without jeopardizing their privileged tax status.   
Research & Publications


The Worth of What They Do

In the past, research on short-term, immersive service-learning programs primarily focused on the benefits to participants. As part of its efforts to build the field of Jewish service-learning, Repair the World commissioned BTW to conduct an exploratory study on the impact of short-term immersive Jewish service-learning on the organizations and communities that host these groups. The study examined projects in the United States, Israel, Nicaragua, Ghana and Ukraine. Overall, BTW found that when projects are well planned and executed, negative impacts are addressed proactively, which result in predominately positive impacts for the host communities.  


Repair the World also created a Jewish service-learning search engine to connect Jewish individuals with volunteer and service opportunities.   


Courtesy of 21st Century Fellows Program

Diversifying the LGBT Movement

In 2009, the Pipeline Project and the Evelyn & Walter Haas, Jr. Fund's Flexible Leadership Investments Program created the 21st Century Fellows Program to retain and advance managers of color working at LGBT human rights and advocacy organizations. BTW collaborated with program staff to review, analyze and synthesize information collected during the Program's inaugural year. A new report describes the leadership program's model, identifies initial key findings and provides recommendations to inform the program's evolution in the future. Click on the video to the right to hear more about the program and the fellows' experiences.  


Supporting Workforce Development Programs

The Bay Area Workforce Funding Collaborative (BAWFC) supports innovative employment strategies and programs throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. These programs prepare low-income and disadvantaged adults for jobs in high-wage, high-demand economic sectors, specifically in health care and biotechnology. BTW recently completed its multi-year evaluation of BAWFC's first two grant cycles. The report examines BAWFC's model and its investments, highlighting key accomplishments, common themes and learnings. It also provides promising practices that have emerged from BAWFC's work and implications for workforce funding collaboratives pursuing broader systems change agendas.


Building to Scale: Best Practices for Using Evaluation

In late 2010, the W. Clement and Jessie V. Stone Foundation convened its education grantees to discuss best practices for using evaluation to improve programs and increase impact. BTW Managing Director, Lande Ajose, facilitated a session called, Evaluation: Do You Have What It Takes? The Foundation and Education First Consulting just released a report from the sessions that provides ideas and advice for nonprofits interested in evaluating their impact.


BTW Welcomes New Staff

BTW welcomes Ria Sengupta Bhatt, Senior Associate, Sheila Wilcox, Associate and Vaneeta Chintamaneni, Research Project Assistant to our team.  Prior to coming to BTW, Ria contributed to and managed education projects at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research and the Public Policy Institute of California. Sheila worked with nonprofit and government clients at SWA Consulting, Inc. Vaneeta comes to us from the University of California, Berkeley where she supported rural development policy, urban housing and redevelopment projects.    

Events Calendar


What: Council on Foundations' Annual Conference

Where: Philadelphia, PA

When: April 10-12, 2011

Who: Registration is now open for members and non-members.  


Hooked at the Roots

What: California Workforce Association's Annual Spring Conference

Where: San Diego, CA

When: April 20-22, 2011

Who: Registration is now open for members and non-members.  

Note: Managing Director, Lande Ajose and Senior Associate, Kris Helé, will present a workshop entitled "Measuring the Effectiveness of Workforce Development Programs: The Case of the Bay  Area Workforce Funding Collaborative (BAWFC)." The session will focus on BAWFC's ambitious efforts to promote a sector-based, dual-customer, career path approach to workforce development. The presentation will include compelling stories about project outcomes, grantees' use of data and an approach to system change that demonstrate BAWFC's results and illuminate common challenges to measuring success.  


Better Philanthropy: From Data to Impact 

What: The Center for Effective Philanthropy  

Where: Boston, MA

When: May 10-11, 2011

Who: Registration is now open. 


The Learning Conference

What: Grantmakers for Effective Organizations

Where: Baltimore, MD

When: June 6-7, 2011

Who: Registration is at capacity, but a wait list is available.

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