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Free Materials to hold forums on Economic Inequality from NIFI

Special Offer from NIFI – FREE Materials for Forums

Making Ends Meet: How Should We Spread Prosperity and Improve Opportunity?

Over the past several months, the Kettering Foundation has been researching the increasingly important issue of economic inequality. The naming and framing of this issue has focused on the growing inequality and the difficulty that families have with surviving economically.

The outcome is a new National Issues Forums (NIFI) issue guide entitled, Making Ends Meet: How Should We Spread Prosperity and Improve Opportunity? The guide will be ready for distribution in early December. Our goal is to have 100 forums by the end of March 2016 so that the results of this research can be reported at the A Public Voice (APV) event in Washington on May 4th.

Hence, a special offer is being presented to the first 100 conveners and/or moderators who agree to conduct a forum. They will receive 20 FREE copies of the issue guide and a copy
of the starter video. The moderator will be expected to have each participant complete the questionnaire following the forum and to mail them back to us. I am asking each of you to consider offering a forum to a group with whom you have contact and who you feel is interested in this issue-your church, a book club, a class you are teaching, a civic organization to which you belong, etc. You can make a significant contribution to spreading awareness of public deliberation and to helping to find a solution to this significant public issue.

Sign up for this offer from NIFI here.

Call for Grant Proposals: NIFI’s Taylor L. Willingham Grant for Community Public Engagement Projects

NIF LogoApply Now for a Taylor L. Willingham Grant

Could you use some funding to plan or kickstart a public engagement project in your community?

Applications for small grants will be accepted until December 31, 2015, and recipient(s) will be announced by January 15, 2016.

Grants are provided to individuals to enable them to develop an understanding of deliberative democracy and launch one or more deliberative dialogues in their communities and organizations in order to advance National Issues Forums Institute’s(NIFI) overall mission, which is to promote public deliberation about national issues.

Read more and for link to download an application…

Opportunity for Students: Blog for New York Times

NICHOLAS KRISTOF is inviting University Students to go overseas with him and blog for him on The New York Times website.

Here is what Kristof has to say about the contest:

Read the full rules here. The contest is open to students enrolled in an American college or university, either as an undergraduate or graduate. You can submit an essay or video or both, essentially explaining why I should pick you. Please don’t gush about my reporting — just explain what you bring to the table. It might be that you’re a great writer or photographer, or it might be that you grew up poor and know something about poverty, or grew up rich and don’t know a thing about it. I’m not looking for expertise but for intelligence and great communication skills so that your blogs, videos and social media will make other students interested in these issues and generate some conversations. If you blog or have other writing or video experience, mention it and send links.

To enter, use this form at the Center for Global Development website. The center will help me winnow down the applicants to a much smaller pool of finalists, and then with the help of my assistant, Liriel Higa, I’ll choose the winner. Probably the aim will be to travel for about 10 days or two weeks in the late spring or early summer. I’ll try to work around your schedule, but if you know for sure you won’t be able to take the time off, then please don’t apply. Your expenses will be covered, but there’s no cash award, and you may have to pay taxes on the value of the trip. I’m not sure just where we’ll travel, but the two Congos are a possibility. If you speak French, mention that but it’s certainly not a requirement.

Also, remember that the traveling is sometimes tough. The joke within The New York Times is that first prize is a trip with me; second prize is two trips with me. We will be bouncing over awful roads, we’ll be eating wretched food, and you may get sick. Hotel rooms may come with bedbugs and rats. And we’ll be on the go from dawn to dusk. To get a sense of what the past winners have done, check out Austin Meyer’s post on malnutrition in India, my interview with the 2014 winner Nicole SgangaSaumya Dave’s first impressions of Morocco in 2011Paul Bower’s reflections in 2009 on how religion in Liberia shares many similarities with the South, or my 2006 visit to the Dzanga-Sangha area in the Central African Republic to see gorillas and elephants with Casey Parks. You can also see what past win-a-trip winners are up to; the 2013 winner, Erin Luhmanncaught up with the previous winners, going back to the Casey in 2006.

If you want to get a sense of the issues I cover and care about, subscribe to my free email newsletter. But don’t feel you need to agree with me to apply or win!

One other suggestion. Only one person will win this trip, but you can always try to make your own trip. Africa is relatively expensive, but traveling around Nicaragua or India/Bangladesh, or Vietnam/Cambodia is more affordable. You may also be able to get a job or volunteer position teaching English. And for that matter, there are many opportunities to leave your comfort zone without leaving this country — tutor in a prison, or in an inner city school. Over the years, I’ve heard from a number of win-a-trip applicants who, disgusted by my poor judgment in failing to pick them, went off on their own journeys and had life-shaping experiences. So if you don’t win my trip, win your own! You may also find ideas for places to volunteer abroad at or

Everyday Democracy’s Big List of Community Action Grants

Everyday Demoracy logo.masthead.inside

Here’s what you’ll find in Everyday Democracy‘s

  • 60 grant opportunities
  • Details on the grant amount, area funded, deadlines, and geographic location
  • Funding for a wide variety of issue areas including youth empowerment, education, strengthening democracy, sustainability, immigration, art and media projects, poverty, and more.
  • Direct links to more information about the requirements

If you’re looking for external funding to boost your community change efforts, this list is the perfect place to start. This list has compiles all the important details in one place, making it easy to decide whether to pursue the opportunity further.

Check out the list of grant opportunities. 


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