Happy Holidays from Philanthropedia!
As we reflect on 2009, we are certainly excited about the progress we’ve made, but we are particularly grateful for the colleagues who have helped us along the way.
After about two years of thinking and planning, we were able to take the Philanthropedia idea and turn it into a full-time organization. We were legally incorporated in June and received our official nonprofit status in September. Thanks to our colleagues at the Hewlett Foundation and the support from the Philanthropy program, we were able to continue our research and complete three new social causes this year: climate change, microfinance, and homelessness in the Bay Area.
We offer a warm thank you to the 392 experts who participated in this research and shared their candid opinions about some of the strongest nonprofits in their sector. We’d like to particularly applaud this group for embracing the Philanthropedia mission and for the first time, sharing their professional opinions with the public in this manner. We really value the perspective our experts offer and look forward to continuing engaging professionals in many more sectors in 2010.
With the help of an extraordinary web development and graphic design team, we were able to launch our website on November 1 and make publicly available high quality information about top nonprofits, for free. We now highlight 48 top-nonprofits in 4 social causes on our website. Thank you to our donors who, in just a few weeks, not only donated thousands of dollars to these outstanding organizations, but also gave us feedback on how to improve Philanthropedia to better serve their needs. And thank you to the outstanding people who work at these great nonprofits, doing such important work for our communities.
One of the most exciting moments this year was certainly the joint press release on December 1 with GuideStar, Charity Navigator, GiveWell, GreatNonprofits, Philanthropy Action, and the Hewlett Foundation. That moment marked a turning point in the charitable giving sector for two main reasons. (1) Major charitable information and rating sites publicly denounced the overhead ratio as a useful stand-alone metric for measuring nonprofit success, and (2) these online philanthropy websites showed they are really willing to collaborate to improve online charitable giving and to push the sector forward. While there is still a lot of work to be done, we were honored to be part of that movement and look forward to continue developing these relationships and ideas in 2010.
As we look forward to 2010, in addition to continuing our research and continuing to develop our website for donors, we especially look forward to building on the relationships we’ve begun over these last few months. Thank you to Sean Stannard-Stockton, the Chronicle of Philanthropy, Richard Marker, Phil Cubeta, Jeff Raderstrong, SSIR, FLiP, Jennifer Q. Chen, and the many others who gave us feedback and engaged us in discussion about these important topics.
In order to improve the nonprofit sector, we believe in the importance of sharing ideas, giving feedback, and self-improvement. This can only truly be accomplished if we can create effective feedback cycles. Whether we are attempting to accomplish this via our expert reviews or trying to engage experts in philanthropy and online giving in general to improve our own organizational practice, we believe change is possible and necessary to move the sector forward.
And of course, we remain focused on our mission of presenting donors with good information about top nonprofits in an actionable way so it’s easy for individuals to make a bigger impact with their giving.
We wish you a very happy holiday season and look forward to collaborating more in the New Year!
–The Philanthropedia Team
Erinn, Deyan, and Dawn