Nonprofit Newswire | August 27, 2009

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Volunteering Waning in Recession, Report Says
Aug 26, 2009; New York Times | We’ve heard the stories about potential increased volunteerism in the nonprofit sector with the increase in unemployment but at the Nonprofit Quarterly, we prefer real information to anecdotes. Stephanie Strom in the New York Times reported on a survey conducted by the National Conference on Citizenship (NCOC) as part of its larger study, “America’s Health Index.” Strom reports that the survey showed that 72% of Americans are volunteering less. NCOC calls the situation a case of “Civic Foreclosure.” —Kristin Barrali

Fastest Dying Cities’ Meet for a Lively Talk
Aug 13, 2009; Wall Street Journal
| A year ago, Forbes magazine published a piece on America’s 10 fastest dying cities. This year, the 10 cities met together recently in Dayton, OH, one of the 10, to discuss their strategies for combating immanent death and to portray themselves as living cities. In addition to the host city, the others were Cleveland, Youngstown OH, Detroit, Buffalo, Scranton, Charleston WV, Canton OH, Springfield MA, and Flint MI. Described by skeptics as a “deathfest”, the conference attracted 200 participants who talked about their plans to revitalize these cities with jobs, culture, and more—and little discussion of how these plans would be paid for during an economic freefall and budget-constrained state and federal governments. The mayor of Dayton, having just seen its economic mainstay, NCR (cash registers and ATMs), pack up and leave for Georgia, inexplicably described her community as a “boutique” city, while Springfield described its ESPN fame for having lured the “The Worlds Strongest Man Competition.” Our interest is in what strategies are nonprofits in these cities adopting to navigate the recession and to find ways of revitalizing their communities beyond boutique-y language and strong man competitions. —Rick Cohen

Burt Reynolds Museum Faces Bulldozer
Aug 23, 2009; My Fox National | Nonprofits in Jupiter, Florida, are on notice for the potential redevelopment of the site where the Burt Reynolds Museum now stands. The town-owned building that houses the museum is the recent focus of negotiations for a new housing development called Harbourside. “There is no guarantee” that the museum will be a part of the new neighborhood, to quote the town’s mayor, and area nonprofits have the potential to move into the celebrity’s spot. —James David Morgan


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