Great Nonprofits Supporting Communities Around the World | April Edition
At LinkedIn for Nonprofits, we are constantly inspired by the incredible nonprofits we have the privilege of working with every day. That’s why we strive to highlight some of those organizations every month—because we could all use a little more inspiration in our daily lives!
This month, the organizations we’re featuring do amazing work battling disease, empowering communities, alleviating poverty, and supporting health and well-being. Learn more about their missions and programs below, and be sure to follow them on social media for news and updates.
Finding Exceptional Nonprofit Talent
Striving to End Colorectal Cancer: Colorectal Cancer Alliance
Founded in 1999, the Colorectal Cancer Alliance is on a mission to end colorectal cancer in our lifetime. The pandemic has made that mission all the more difficult—and urgent. With many routine health screenings canceled or skipped, colorectal cancer deaths could increase significantly over the next decade. To combat this, the Colorectal Cancer Alliance has been working tirelessly to increase awareness of the importance of screenings and make it easier for recently diagnosed patients to find the support they need. Since cancer patients are often immunocompromised, making them more vulnerable and isolated, the organization has also focused on maintaining a sense of community for allies—patients, survivors, and caregivers who support each other in battling this disease.
“No one should face colorectal cancer alone,” says Steven Bushong, Senior Manager of Strategic Communications at the Colorectal Cancer Alliance, “so we’ve created spaces and opportunities for our allies to continue showing up for one another. At our annual Walk to End Colon Cancer, for example, hundreds of people would usually stand together, but that couldn’t happen this year—so we took it virtual and had people walk in their own neighborhoods and decorate their cars. We’ve also taken our conferences and events online, so people can watch safely and hear the information they need.”
To hire the talent it needs to make programs and events like this possible, Colorectal Cancer Alliance uses LinkedIn to post its open positions.
“We’ve gotten great results from those listings,” says Lou DiGioia, Chief Operating Officer at the Colorectal Cancer Alliance. “I would say that LinkedIn is the best source that we have for new applicants.”
Visit the Colorectal Cancer Alliance’s website for more information, sign the Alliance's pledge to get screened (all people at average risk should begin screening at 45), and follow the organization on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn.
Getting the Word Out About a Great Mission
Empowering People to Create Lasting Change: Rotary
For over 116 years, Rotary has empowered people to unite, take action, and create lasting change—in their communities, and around the world. The organization’s more than 36,000 clubs give community and business leaders the opportunity to connect and mobilize to create solutions to problems they identify within their communities. Through Rotary, members and participants also forge lasting friendships. Locally and globally, Rotary members support initiatives ranging from expanding access to quality health care for underserved women and children, to helping improve education outcomes, to working to protect the environment. And most notably, Rotary and its members remain focused on polio eradication. Rotary set the audacious goal to purge the world of polio, which will be only the second human disease in history to be eradicated, and became a founding partner in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in 1988. Thanks to the efforts of Rotary and its partners, not only was the World Health Organization’s African region recently certified wild poliovirus-free, the incidence of polio has plummeted by more than 99.9% across the globe.
“Our unique blend of leadership and integrity defines us as people of action, mobilizing in response to challenges,” says John Hewko, General Secretary and CEO of Rotary International. “And our leadership has been and continues to be manifested on many different levels—from the role of Rotary members in drafting the UN Charter in 1945, to polio eradication, to our peace programs, to our local club projects, and to the work we do across the causes we support.”
Rotary has found that LinkedIn offers a strong platform for connecting with business leaders and professionals who want to make a difference in their communities. The organization also uses LinkedIn to spread the word about the Rotary Peace Fellowship program, which enables up to 130 leaders annually to study at one of its Peace Centers and become effective catalysts for peace.
“Our Peace Fellowship applications open up every February, attracting LinkedIn members around the world who are interested in peace building,” says Hewko. “Through LinkedIn, we’re able to reach would-be candidates who are likely to excel in rigorous academic study and practical training and further build on the legacy of the more than 1,400 individuals our Peace Centers have trained to date.”
Elevating Development Efforts
Improving Quality of Life in Haiti: Hope for Haiti
For the past 32 years, Hope for Haiti has worked to alleviate poverty and improve quality of life in Haiti. This includes supporting economic development, building infrastructure, and providing better access to education, clean water, and healthcare. The pandemic has complicated these efforts, forcing the organization to rapidly implement new protocols to continue its life-saving work and keep team members safe. One of its biggest fundraising campaigns, the Hike for Haiti challenge, has also undergone some major changes. Now in its third year, the campaign challenges people to hike the equivalent of 200 flights of stairs (a little over 10 miles)—the distance some Haitian school children walk every day up a mountain to get to school.
“Last year, we had to change things up,” says Taylor Hebble, Director of Marketing & Communications at Hope for Haiti. “We had planned to do in-person activations, but then COVID happened and we had to go entirely virtual. Despite this, we raised 10x the amount we had the previous year. We found that people were really looking for a way to come together, even virtually, and support something bigger than themselves.”
Hope for Haiti uses LinkedIn Sales Navigator for outreach and development, including identifying the right people to connect and engage with at foundations when applying for grants.
“On the media side, LinkedIn Sales Navigator has been hugely helpful for finding media contacts,” Taylor adds. “Not an insignificant amount of our media coverage has come from finding people on LinkedIn and initiating conversations. The media market is so oversaturated—sometimes it takes having a conversation with someone and telling your story to make them pay attention.”
Prioritizing Learning and Development
Fostering the Worldwide Power of Yoga: Yoga Alliance
At the onset of COVID-19, there was an early realization of the devastating global impact this pandemic would have on people whose livelihoods depend on in-person interaction, including hundreds of thousands of yoga professionals. At a time when in-studio yoga teaching became impossible for many, the pandemic simultaneously amplified the need for yoga’s wellness benefits. Yoga Alliance rapidly deployed tools, resources, workshops, and webinars to support members and non-members in providing classes and yoga teacher trainings online.
“We listened to our members and launched an Emergency Relief Fund in partnership with the global nonprofit Ivy Child International to provide short-term financial assistance to yoga professionals facing severe economic hardship due to COVID-19. This fund was available to all yoga professionals around the world,” said Kristina Graff, Yoga Alliance Foundation Managing Director. “As we leverage yoga for social impact, we also launched the Eka Recovery Fund to support yoga professionals in sustaining their work, starting with those who teach.”
With more than 6,000 Registered Yoga Schools (RYSs) and 100,000-plus Registered Yoga Teachers (RYTs) worldwide, Yoga Alliance is dedicated to supporting its members in providing safe, quality yoga, while ensuring the practice is equitable and accessible to all. LinkedIn is a valuable tool in furthering this mission. Over the past year, Yoga Alliance has relied on LinkedIn to educate the professional yoga community about its work and gain input from members, thought leaders, field experts, and more. The organization also uses LinkedIn Learning to provide training opportunities and support to its internal team.
“It’s important to ensure that our staff feels fully supported and is given opportunities to grow their leadership skills and knowledge base as the needs of the organization evolve,” says Marcus Wade, Vice President of People and Culture at Yoga Alliance. “LinkedIn Learning allows us to give our employees access to robust resources that can not only help them excel right now, but also in their long-term career development.”