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This report aims to share and illustrate the ways we invest in the Native nations and people in our region. One of our guiding values is to seek to do more good every year. This report will help us look internally at how we can do more to make the region better for everyone, including the Indigenous people of this land
National Indian Child Welfare Association;
This guide provides some basic information on how to establish effective tribal governance and the role of tribal leadership in tribal child welfare systems.
Environmental Working Group;
As the southern Great Plains get hotter and drier, is federal policy that encourages farmers not to adapt to climate change leading to another Dust Bowl?
That's the troubling question raised by a new EWG report that shows how a provision in the federal crop insurance program provides a strong financial incentive for growers to plant the same crops in the same way, year in and year out, regardless of changing climate conditions. What's worse, this program is focused on the same southern Great Plains counties hit hardest by the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, the worst man-made environmental disaster in American history.
The federal crop insurance program guarantees farmers' earnings from their crops won't fall below a percentage of their usual income. The percentage is set based on a multi-year average of a farmer's actual crop yields. Averaging good and bad years grounds the program in reality.
But a provision called the Actual Production History Yield Exclusion – snuck into the 2014 Farm Bill during conference negotiations – allows growers to drop bad years from their average crop yield calculations. The government simply pretends these bad years didn't happen. In some cases, more than 15 bad years can be thrown out when calculating the average yield, resulting in artificially inflated insurance payouts.
It makes sense for crop insurance to give growers a break if they're occasionally hit by one or two bad years, but keeping growers on a treadmill of failed crops and insurance payouts is foolish. Helping farmers adapt to the new weather conditions would be considerably better, and was exactly what helped growers survive the Dust Bowl and return to productivity.
The southern Great Plains are getting hotter and drier. Drought has been common over the last 10 years and forecasts show the number of days above 100 degrees quadrupling by 2050. Implementing conservation practices to adapt to changing climate conditions is vital for growers who want to stay in business.
Some, but not enough, growers are already adopting conservation techniques in this region. Savings from ending the misguided yield exclusion policy could be used to help more growers change the way they farm to face the challenges posed by a changing climate.
Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation (an affiliate of Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates);
At Great Lakes we work to make postsecondary degrees, credentials and certificates accessible to as many students as possible. Specifically, we focus our philanthropy on helping those who traditionally have the most to gain from college, but who often have the least support in getting there: students from low-income homes, students of color and first-generation students.
This Report highlights our belief that overcoming barriers to graduation requires engaging both students and colleges—with success being their shared goal. In it you'll find details on many of the 50 grants we launched in 2016, several key findings and our goals for the coming year.
Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED);
The Assets & Opportunity Scorecard is a comprehensive look at Americans' financial security today and their opportunities to create a more prosperous future. It assesses the 50 states and the District of Columbia on 130 outcome and policy measures, which describe how well residents are faring and what states are doing to help them build and protect assets. The Scorecard enables states to benchmark their outcomes and policies against other states in five issue areas: Financial Assets & Income, Businesses & Jobs, Housing & Homeownership, Health Care, and Education.
The Bush Foundation launched the Native Nations Initiative in 2009 to support governance reform efforts of all 23 Native nations that share geography with Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota. Five years into this 10-year initiative, the Foundation hired Wilder Research as an independent evaluator to assess our progress and challenges. Wilder interviewed program participants, tribal leadership and regional leaders from the field. This learning paper summarizes Wilder's evaluation.
Pacific Community Ventures;
Impact measurement is central to the practice of mission investing, allowing mission investors to understand if their investments are meeting their goals and furthering their mission. The Northwest Area Foundation (NWAF) has worked with PCV InSight for eight years to evaluate and understand the impact of its mission-related investment, Invest Northwest. In this white paper, we detail how the fund has delivered consistent social impact since its inception, including: strong job growth; steady increases in annual median wages; and higher employee wages than at other private businesses nationally and regionally.
This report from Arts Midwest, investigates how small and mid-sized arts organizations learn, adapt, and grow. Examining the experiences of eight organizations participating in this leadership and strategy development program, this report identifies four capacities that have helped organizations in Minnesota and North Dakota thrive in the face of operational challenges, staffing and leadership changes, and shifts in funding. Key takeaways offer insights for similar organizations seeking to build their resiliency and for grantmakers supporting the arts and culture sector.
In 2009 the Bush Foundation announced a 10-year Teacher Effectiveness Initiative (TEI) focused on transforming the ways in which teacher candidates are recruited, prepared, assisted with employment, and supported by teacher preparation programs (TPPs). This initiative is guided by the Bush Foundation's educational achievement goal to increase the percentage of students who are on track to earn a degree after high school and eliminate disparities among diverse groups.
The initiative aims to increase K-12 teachers' quality and effectiveness, and thereby improve students' educational achievement. The impetus for this initiative lies in a strong body of evidence suggesting that teacher quality is the most influential in-school variable affecting student performance.
Fourteen institutions of higher education (IHEs) in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota involved in the Teacher Effectiveness Initiative are: Augsburg College, Bethel University, Concordia University, Hamline University, Minnesota State University–Mankato, Minnesota State University–Moorhead, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, North Dakota State University, St. Catherine University, University of St. Thomas, St. Cloud State University, University of South Dakota, Valley City State University, Winona State University
Boston College Center on Wealth and Philanthropy;
This report provides estimates of wealth transfer and philanthropic giving by households during the period from 2007 through 2011, with one study focused on the households in North Dakota, and another focused on household wealth transfer and charitable giving at the national level. Includes projections of individual charitable giving during the next half century. With bibliographical references.
Third Way, The;
How easy is it to buy a firearm from a complete stranger without a background check? In an analysis of internet gun sales in 10 states from a single website during the months of June and July, Third Way found more than 15,000 guns -- onethirdof which were semi-automatics -- available for sale without background checks at any given moment. In 2,000 web ads in these states, buyers were intentionally seeking private sellers where background checks are specifically exempt from federal law.
This report focuses on online sales in the 10 states where Senators were initially targeted but failed to support bipartisan legislation to close this virtual loophole.