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Updates from around the country.

On the Rebound

The fundraising programs of many American nonprofit organizations rebounded vigorously with expanded development efforts and the improved economy in 1983. At the same time, competition for philanthropic dollars grew tougher.

Those were among the findings of a recently released survey by the FundRaising Institute, which represents a broad range of nonprofit causes including hospitals, universities, health and welfare groups and religious organizations. The survey results reinforce the conclusions of Theatre Communications Group’s Theatre Facts 83, the national survey of the American nonprofit professional theatre’s 1982-83 season.

Nearly three-fourths of the 139 organizations evaluated by the Institute revealed that gift income from their annual giving programs had been higher in 1983 than in 1982.

Many fundraising executives also noted increased competition in their areas from nonprofit groups that, until recently, had not raised funds locally. Many of those groups had stepped up their local campaigns as governmental support eroded. William F. Balthaser, editorial director for FRI, noted, “These are not just a few tiny groups that finally decided to mail out an annual appeal. Rather, many are well-established organizations whose traditional funding sources have dried up and who have turned to non-grantsmanship fundraising in a serious way.”

The 1983 FRI survey originally appeared in the January 1984 issue of the Fund-Raising Institute’s Monthly Portfolio. A free copy is available from the Fund-Raising Institute, Box 365, Ambler, PA 19002.

A less obvious but more significant form of corporate largesse is non-cash philanthropy, says a recent report published by Independent Sector. According to “Non-Cash Corporate Philanthropy: A Report on Current Practices with Annotated Bibliography,” donations of products, services, employee volunteer time and other “in-kind” activities by American corporations, significantly benefit community nonprofit organizations.

The report supplies examples and models of non-cash philanthropy by a variety of American corporations in four categories: donated products, services and facilities, from printing brochures to loaned executive services: employee voluntarism; and program-related investments. Copies of the report are available from Independent Sector, 1828 L St., NW, Washington, DC 20036; (202) 223-8100.

Touring Aid

The Affiliated State Arts Agencies of the Upper Midwest has announced its Performing Arts Touring Program for the 1984-85 season. Actors’ Theatre of St. Paul, The Guthrie Theater and Milwaukee Repertory Theater are among the 20 performing companies selected for participation in the program. The Affiliation will aid selected companies with partial financial support of artist fees and block booking services. For additional information about those companies touring this season and applications for touring support, contact Affiliated State Arts Agencies of the Upper Midwest, Suite 302, 528 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55403; (612) 341-0755.

Funding Roundup

Theatre Communications Group received four new grants totalling $23,500 from state and corporate sources. The New York State Council on the Arts’ Literature Program awarded TCG a $10,000 grant in the book publication category for support of editorial, production, promotion and distribution costs. Exxon Corporation awarded TCG an unrestricted contribution of $5,000 in addition to its $25,000 grant in support of American Theatre magazine. TCG also received $1,500 in ongoing program support from the Alcoa Foundation, and a $1,000 first-time contribution from the Mobil Foundation is earmarked to support TCG’s publications program.

Alaska Repertory Theatre has amassed $51,825 from a raffle for its newly created endowment fund. More than 2,000 people participated in the drawing; first prize was a $10,000 international vacation. The proceeds from the raffle will be matched one-to-one under the terms of a challenge grant administered by the Alaska State Department of Commerce, bringing the total to over $100,000.

Another challenge grant was pledged to Denver Center for the Performing Arts in the Amount of $250,000 by Francis Van Derbur and Marilyn Van Derbur Atler, members of the Denver Center’s Board of Trustees…New Dramatists has raised over $30,000 in this year’s Industry Fund Drive through a direct-mail campaign aimed at all facets of the theatre industry.

Students in the Midwest will be exposed to theatre thanks to two recent grants. The Cleveland Play House has received $30,000 from Citibank/Citicorp for its production of The Three Musketeers by Eberle Thomas, providing special performances of the play for area school groups. Chicago-area high school students will see Samm-Art Williams’ Home as a result of $25,000 given to Victory Gardens Theater by the Joyce Foundation.

AT&T has given The Acting Company $50,000 in support of a national tour of more than 50 American cities in 1984-85. The company’s repertoire will include Shakespeare’s As You Like It and The Merry Wives of Windsor.

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