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  • Board Binder - The Watershed Institute
    the organization you care passionately about Being a board member feels like full time work in addition to your professional and personal life Board binders are one way to collect the information generated from your nonprofit In addition to organizing information for yourself a well designed board binder can serve as a consolidated resource for new board members Getting Started What do you need to create your all in one resource A set of 5 inch binders and section dividers is a start The next step is to determine what materials need to be included Think about the reference materials that help the board govern Bylaws board agreements committee descriptions strategic plan and what items are needed to properly oversee the nonprofit The binder should become a constant source of reference for board members Below is a sample table of contents and a list of resources within each section for a board binder Tab 1 Board Member Background Board member contact information Board member term limits Bios of board members Board job descriptions Tab 2 Meetings Agendas Meeting minutes Tab 3 Board Member Responsibilities Bylaws Board responsibilities Current strategic plan Current Bylaws Tab 4 Financials Approved current year s budget Financial reports Most recent capital budget and needs list Tab 5 Board Committees Summary description of each committee Calendar of committee meetings Committee meeting structure and member listing Committee calendar date time and place for meetings Tab 6 Nonprofit Organization s Program Materials Organization mission and vision statements Organizational brochure Organizational historic timeline List of accomplishments Map of watershed Calendar of events Tab 7 Staff Staff photos Staff organizational chart Staff phone numbers and extensions Summaries of each program Tab 8 Archives Past long range strategic plans Past years budgets Annual reports Helpful Hints Add educational articles on board governance

    Original URL path: http://thewatershedinstitute.org/board-binder/ (2016-04-28)
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  • Technical Advisory Committees - The Watershed Institute
    build upon their current relationship with the organization and you are familiar with their professionalism knowledge and work product Getting Started Forming a TAC requires convening a group of individuals with expertise related to your project However before you begin contacting people to join your TAC identify the project goals Identifying your goals will help in determining who should sit on your TAC For example if a project goal is to assess the health of a watershed and then implement strategies to improve its heath include a scientist knowledgeable in monitoring an assessment tool and a municipal official on your TAC By establishing a working relationship with an official during the assessment phase of the project you will have a contact and positive relationship to draw on during the implementation stage This can prove to be extremely beneficial since a municipal official can support the passage of ordinances to improve the watershed s health In addition the involvement and support of this official shows the rest of the municipality that your organization provides solid fact based information thus giving credibility to your organization s work Some helpful hints when assembling TAC members include Clearly identify the scope purpose and timeframe of the project up front As TAC members sign on be clear about requests for review and associated deadlines They will appreciate the clarity and it will help keep you on schedule Decide how your TAC will communicate Will you hold meetings or circulate documents and comments via e mail Communicate the time commitment that will be required from members Establish the role of the TAC Will it serve primarily as an advisory body providing feedback and suggestions Or will it have more of a coordinating role providing oversight and direction With its cumulative expertise and varied perspectives a TAC

    Original URL path: http://thewatershedinstitute.org/technical-advisory-committees/ (2016-04-28)
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  • Marketing - The Watershed Institute
    events list of programs and current issues In today s world online postings can be particularly effective and there are many free options for getting your organization s name out on the web In many cases the internet is the first place people turn when they want to find out information about a cause or organization so it s crucial to cultivate an online presence Facebook and Twitter are popular free social media sites where you can advertise your organization and your work to potential constituents There are also sites that will allow you to build free websites Wix com Weebly com etc which are a wonderful way to show your target audience that you have a presence in your watershed and to showcase the work that you are doing If you are not familiar or comfortable with managing online media consider hiring an intern or volunteer to assist you Many high school and college students have strong web social media skills and would love to be able to have your organization on their resume Start by focusing on your membership to increase their awareness about your organization and its work Target your membership through your website and newsletter Also consider developing a membership e mail list to keep your members abreast of current happenings and programs within your organization Highlight community issues your group is tackling as well If your organization does not have its own newsletter or website there are other resources available For example the Garden State EnviroNet accepts information from groups at no charge to be posted on the Action Alerts and Calendar of Events sections of its website Press releases are another means to get the message out and can fulfill two purposes The first is volunteer recruitment since press releases both generate interest in a project or event and include details on how to participate The second purpose is to publicize events after they occur journalists often use releases as foundations for articles Be sure to include contact information as reporters may wish to speak with you further if they have questions or need more information Media advisories are also brief documents but they are designed to notify the press of upcoming community events to encourage full media coverage print and photo Like press releases media advisories provide the who what where when and why of a program or project but generally do not include schedules of future projects To assist in getting started compile the following resources List of local media contacts Developing and maintaining a current list of media contacts is helpful when submitting press releases and media advisories and holding press conferences Update this list every few months to keep it current Printed materials such as newsletters brochures and fact sheets that detail your organization s mission and programs to be used at community events Display board with photos representing all of your programs for community events As you begin to work with the media build and maintain working relationships with

    Original URL path: http://thewatershedinstitute.org/marketing/ (2016-04-28)
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  • Insurance - The Watershed Institute
    insurance policies and associated nuances can be overwhelming when determining the coverage your organization needs The number of coverage options seems almost proportional to the number of insurance companies To complicate matters insurance policies change from year to year There are strategies to reduce your risks risk management but these activities such as developing policies and purchasing safety materials can also be seen as additional costs to the organization These additional costs however should be seen as valuable assets and investments in your organization Risk management is a means to reduce the liability in your organization When your organization invests in the safety of its operations there is a rippling effect felt both internally and externally These new policies and materials improve the quality of your programs by informing your members and volunteers that their safety is as equally important as their new experiences with nature and your organization They also provide staff and volunteers with the peace of mind that they are trained and have the means to handle most circumstances Once you have taken steps to reduce your organization s risk it is time to look into the insurance options to insure the rest The most basic insurance coverage for an organization is a commercial general liability or CGL policy This type of policy provides coverage for claims alleging bodily injury personal injury slander libel and property damage General liability insurance covers many but not all liability exposures facing an organization The second most common insurance coverage is Directors and Officers D O insurance D O insurance protects an organization against claims alleging wrongful acts by those covered in the policy D O insurance covers the legal expenses and settlements associated with claims Consider the following scenarios a granter determines that your organization inappropriately used restricted funds to

    Original URL path: http://thewatershedinstitute.org/capacity-building/administrative/insurance/ (2016-04-28)
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  • New Jersey Watershed Examples - The Watershed Institute
    are running their education programs Musconetcong Watershed Association In 2001 the Association dedicated to formally create an education program curriculum and integrate it into the budget Each year they present four day programs on water to fifth grade students They discuss Water cycle watersheds Non point source pollution how land use effects water Chemical biological and visual monitoring The Association charges the school 130 per class for all four days the rest of the operating money comes from the general operating budget Pequannock River Coalition The Coalition created a curriculum that brings aquatic life into fourth and fifth grade classrooms by creating an aquarium with local macroinvertabrates and discussing Their local watershed the aquatic life found in it Identifying and sorting sample macroinvertabrates Non point source pollution Schools are not charged for the program it is funded solely from grants and donations New Jersey Audubon Society The Society offers a wide variety of education programs which cater to audiences from preschoolers to adults and teachers They present programs at schools as well as on Audubon property Programs are funded through membership support and program fees Stony Brook Millstone Watershed Association Stony Brook has been conducting education programs for over 20 years with programs geared toward all age groups The groups offers the following advice Establish goals for education programs and always keep them in mind A program whose goal is to generate money is not a good goal but a goal to increase public awareness about your organization or local issues to connect with children or assist teachers are more sustainable goals Maintain an on going internal program assessment Discuss if your original goals still make sense be willing to adapt programs as your goals change Obtain feedback from teachers and the public on their satisfaction with the programs and

    Original URL path: http://thewatershedinstitute.org/new-jersey-watershed-examples/ (2016-04-28)
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  • Grant Management - The Watershed Institute
    base of support A strong grant management program which identifies potential projects and funding sources clearly states needs and offers solutions and properly manages their grants can reap the monetary rewards of grants Getting Started Funders want to fund projects that demonstrate creativity clearly state a need and outline a strategic approach to achieve goals There are six steps to help develop a grant management program within your organization Develop a grant reference file Prioritize your funding needs Compile a list of funding prospects Cultivate funders Develop and submit timely proposals and Manage the received funds properly The grant reference file consolidates the organization s information in a central file that is used for developing proposals i e mission statement resumes budgets program descriptions testimonials etc Use this information and your strategic plan to identify funding needs for your organization Compare your identified projects with funders who match your interests and fund similar activities Funders often receive more applications than the grant program can support Applicants need to be favorably distinguished against numerous other submitters One idea to gain personal recognition is to contact the grant program manager directly and describe your project Demonstrate that you have researched the funder s interests and know they fund similar organizations Celebrate your achievements capabilities and convey how the proposed funding matches both your mission and the funder s objectives Listen and incorporate the funder s feedback and develop a clearly thought out proposal Grant reviewers can quickly identify well designed proposals Upon receipt of grant funds the organization needs to properly manage funds and implement activities stated in the proposal Continue to update funders with your activities The key to a continued positive relationship between funder and recipient organization is the organization s demonstration for managing the funds and project well If

    Original URL path: http://thewatershedinstitute.org/grant-management/ (2016-04-28)
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  • Budget Administration - The Watershed Institute
    fiscal year and lists your group s assets liabilities and any change in them from the beginning to the end of the year In addition organization s must prepare the following statements to comply with FASB 116 Statement of Financial Activity The Statement of Financial Activity is essentially a profit loss statement which shows the amount of revenue that came into your organization versus the expenditures Statement of Cash Flow The Statement of Cash Flow shows where money came from and how it was used It combines your Statement of Financial Position and your Statement of Financial Activity FASB 117 explains how to report volunteer contributions For example if a lawyer contributes 20 pro bono hours of work those 20 hours count as a donation of time towards your organization However the hours an office volunteer works to fold and stamp envelopes do not count Only hours from a specialized skill are included as a donation to your organization Getting Started As the year moves forward and you navigate your budget evaluate your progress Are you spending too little or too much Are actual costs exceeding proposed costs Perform a variance analysis by measuring the variation between actual and proposed costs If you are over budget try to determine why Were expenditures too high or was revenue too low For example Did your membership level decrease Did program supplies cost more than anticipated Did rent or utilities increase Did general donations decrease Keep detailed and thorough records of all sources of revenue and expenditures These records will provide a starting point for the following year s budget and provide data to be used to analyze trends over the years Knowing actual costs will help in determining how much money to allocate in future budgets Further Resources The Alliance for Nonprofit

    Original URL path: http://thewatershedinstitute.org/budget-administration/ (2016-04-28)
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  • Work Plans - The Watershed Institute
    We seem to automatically jump into projects such as a stream cleanups and not take the time to proactively plan to answer the what who when where and how questions It is easy to think that creating a plan is a waste of time and resources but thorough plans can save time and resources Work plans can motivate others to become involved to complete the tasks at hand and cultivate leadership in your organization by activating your membership The work plan can also translate into a standard operating procedure document for repeatable projects The first question to answer is what is the goal s for the project Do you want to educate your members about nonpoint source pollution increase unrestricted funding sources increase your organization s visibility or all of the above The goal translates into the vision of how this project will fit your mission An example for membership efforts can be to increase your general membership through new membership strategies The next step is to determine what objectives need to be completed in order to attain your goal There are many ways to accomplish your goal so choose objectives that will have the largest impact Objectives should be S M A R T Specific Measurable Attainable Realistic and Timely An example of a S M A R T objective is to increase general membership by 25 in 12 months Specific focuses on general membership Measurable targets a quantifiable increase in membership Attainable uses historical data to determine what is attainable in this case we challenge ourselves to increase membership recruitment by 5 from last year Realistic financial and human resources are available to complete the project Timely sets a deadline to complete the plan in 12 months After you determine the objectives needed to attain your goal outline

    Original URL path: http://thewatershedinstitute.org/work-plans/ (2016-04-28)
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