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Are We Really Facing Race?

main.jpgThe following blog is by James Faghmous.

On the night of May 1, 2011, hundreds of people stormed the streets of New York and D.C. They waved the US flag and chanted our national anthem. They were celebrating the death of Osama bin Laden. Although such celebrations did not take place in the Twin Cities, I find it ironic and timely that the Saint Paul Foundation hosted its  5th Annual Facing Race Ambassador Awards at the Saint Paul River Center just two days later.

It is important to realize that extremist nationalism–systematically self-aggrandizing while ignorantly diminishing others—breeds racism. In fact, racism disguised in nationalism is even more dangerous, since it provides some seemingly legitimate excuse for racist thoughts and behavior. Whether it is “Latinos are taking our jobs” or “Muslims are terrorists” the result for individuals of the non-dominant culture is the same; they are marginalized, discriminated against and placed under heightened scrutiny.

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What or Who is MAVA?

Minnesota Association of Volunteer Administration (MAVA) is a membership association of about 800 leaders of volunteers, mostly professional volunteer program administrators, from across the state. It's a forum for members to become engaged with professional development and share resources. MAVA conducts the latest research on volunteerism, including engaging new immigrant communities, best practices for engaging baby boomers and the impact of the recession.

Jay Haapala—current board chair for MAVA and volunteer services administrator at the Minnesota Children’s Museum—was gracious enough to provide The Bridge an inside view of MAVA.

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Meet Our New Board Members Part II

main.jpgYNPN-Twin Cities is led by a dedicated board of nonprofit professionals. In November, we put out a call for new board members and we were thrilled by the number of talented young professionals that responded. After a competitive nominations process, we're excited to introduce to you our newest board members.

In this two-part series, we asked the new board members to grill interview each other, so that we could get the nitty gritty on who they are. Next up to bat, Jamie Millard and Lisa Joyslin.

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A Surprisingly Wild Time in Apple Valley

main.jpgOverall Rating: 4.5 out of 5: Venue, originality and hands down the best way to experience a small piece of the Zoo make up for the drive out to Apple Valley. 

If you were looking to cure winter blues on Saturday, Feb. 19 all it took was a ride out to the Minnesota Zoo in Apple Valley. Now if you’re thinking that no event is worth a drive out to Apple Valley, especially in the winter, believe me the same thought crossed my mind. But it was worth it! This dream worthy venue played host to the launch party of the Zoo’s newly formed young professional group, AZUL.

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Meet Our New Board Members Part I

main.jpgYNPN Twin Cities is led by a dedicated board of nonprofit professionals. In November, we put out a call for new board members and we were thrilled by the number of talented young professionals that responded. After a competitive nominations process, we're excited to introduce to you our newest board members.

In this two-part series, we asked the new board members to grill interview each other, so that we could get the nitty gritty on who they are. First up to bat, Alison Griffin and James Faghmous.

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Q&As | What should you do with your collection of business cards?

You ask the questions, and we'll find an expert with the answers. Nicole Harrison, principal at SocialNicole, chimes in on how to handle what seems to be our Hoarders-style addiction to business cards.

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From No House to the State House

main.jpgAt first glance, Representative Rena Moran’s ascent to public office is not unlike other Twin Cities progressive’s – a career in early childhood education, a fellowship with Wellstone Action, leadership as a community organizer – that is until you learn that just ten years ago this mother of seven was homeless, in search of a better life for her family.

It’s fitting then that Rep. Moran (DFL-St. Paul), a self-proclaimed “mother who decided to get involved,” now serves on the Education, Health and Human Services, and Public Safety/Crime Prevention Committees.

The future, however, wasn’t always as bright. Having heard the Twin Cities was supportive of families and public education, she made the heart-wrenching decision to move her young family in search of a better, more stable community. As Rena said, “it’s about your kids and the outcomes you strive for.”

Rena and her family sought resources from Caring and Sharing Hands upon their arrival, appreciating the warm and welcoming environment provided by an array of volunteers who helped parents navigate the different networks of community support services. Rena and her family also utilized the resources of Lutheran Social Services and Catholic Charities in their first months in St. Paul.

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Member Spotlight | Who is Jamie Millard?

jamie.jpgThe Vitals: Name, Current City, Age
Jamie Millard, Funapolis, MN. 24

1. Where do you work? What is your position? What do you like best about it?
Charities Review Council. Communications Coordinator. There are so many great nonprofits in MN and by working at the Council, I get the opportunity to help support many different kinds of nonprofits and donors.

2. Why nonprofits?
Working in a sector that proactively thinks and cares about the collective good of society is mentally and emotionally stimulating. Personally, I most enjoy working on the capacity building side of the sector as opposed to direct service—partly why working for an organization like Charities Review Council is such an amazing fit.

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