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Good morning.

It’s not just gyms, schools, and workplaces that are demanding proof of Covid vaccination — now that might become standard practice at charity fundraising events.

Some nonprofits are already carding their donors, Emily Haynes learned as she asked charities how the Delta variant is changing their plans for the fall. Many groups are canceling plans for in-person events — especially large ones — but some are keeping small events, like the backyard party (above) that Hopeful Horizons in Beaufort, S.C., held at the home of one of its board members.

But even that idea is feeling risky now, says Erin Hall, the charity’s chief fundraiser. “I felt good about an outdoor in-person event a month ago,” she says. “Now I’m not sure, and I don’t think there are any right answers.”

What’s clear from Emily’s interviews is that charities will be relying for a long time to come on what they learned from pandemic fundraising. Emily summed those up in her article 7 Tips for Hosting Better Virtual Fundraising Events.

And to read a case study of how one charity innovated its fundraising in a time of quarantine, take a look at Maria Di Mento’s article on LA Family Housing, which has figured out smart ways to conduct online donor visits and tours — and get online influence to promote its cause. (That article was part of our special report on the Covid-19 innovations that will stick, with lots else worth reading.)

Here’s What Else You Need to Know

The philanthropy trust gap might not be a big deal.

That’s what Chronicle columnist Leslie Lenkowsky found after he took a closer look at the numbers from a new poll commissioned by Independent Sector. He notes that only 26 percent of Americans said they had little trust in philanthropy. What’s more, it’s hard to know what people meant in their answers: Did they feel confident philanthropy will address important problems? Or that donors will behave charitably rather than promoting their own interests?

The new Clubhouse app is helping nonprofits reach new, influential audiences.

The audio-only app allows people to have conversations in a chat room with a host and one other person — or thousands, writes Maria Di Mento. The result is more intimacy and less misunderstanding than relying on text because you hear the tone and pace of the conversation, according to one nonprofit CEO Maria spoke with. Clubhouse doesn’t excel as a fundraising tool or as a direct line to wealthy donors, Maria writes, but many charities have had success in finding and connecting with people with whom they can then build relationships over time.

Outdoor dining in Orange County, CA

Philanthropy can help town centers come back to life after decades of decline exacerbated by the Covid-19 crisis.

Nancy Rauch Douzinas, head of the Rauch Foundation, is urging grant makers — especially family funds like hers — to do more to collaborate with local governments and businesses to revive the nation’s Main Streets. In particular, she says in an essay with Ann Golob, a consultant to her foundation, philanthropy can play an important role in helping local businesses in communities of color, which usually don’t get much attention from other civic leaders.

But there’s no reversing the move to online shopping, and that means towns need to take flexible and creative approaches to repurposing vacant storefronts,” they write. “To that end, local foundations can make grants to arts organizations that are turning empty stores into galleries and public spaces for creating, inventing, and learning.”

One new idea to go into the weekend:

Social distancing has exacerbated an epidemic of loneliness that is taking a toll on Americans’ physical and mental health, writes Susan McPherson, author the new book The Lost Art of Connecting: the Gather, Ask, Do Method for Building Meaningful Relationships at Work. Nonprofits hold the key to a cure, she says, because they can bring together people to volunteer and help them build a rich and diverse network of close confidants.

Philanthropy Free Lasagnas

And if you have time to just read one piece, you’ll be inspired by the 33,000 volunteers who have rallied to deliver lasagnas to people in need during the pandemic.

Haleluya Hadero, of the Associated Press, writes about a grassroots effort called Lasagna Love, started by the owner of a San Diego design and build company who was looking for ways to help her community when the pandemic brought her family’s business to a standstill.

There weren’t many in-person volunteering options so she made seven trays of lasagna and asked on a local Facebook moms group if anybody wanted a meal. The responses went viral and produced an explosion of volunteer chefs (like Shari DiBrito, Lasagna Love’s New Jersey regional director, above) who are eagerly delivering home-cooked meals throughout a large swath of the nation.

We hope you have plenty of time to relax over a good meal with friends and loved ones this weekend.

Marilyn Dickey and Stacy Palmer

More News and Opinion

What We’re Reading Elsewhere

MacKenzie Scott’s huge gifts seem to follow two notable patterns, according to a new analysis: They seek to rebalance societal inequities and to address crises as they arise. What might be coming next from Scott: gifts to environmental causes. (Bloomberg)

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals International has raised $170 million since its founding in 2006 but has spent “little more than 20 percent of its total revenue on actual programs and services that help animals.” (Mother Jones)

The University of Wisconsin at Madison will likely never collect on a $100 million pledge that Taiwanese electronics giant Foxconn made in 2018. (Associated Press)

Leaders and staff at the Human Rights Campaign are waiting anxiously for the results of an inquiry into whether the organization’s former president knowingly abetted departed New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s attempts to deflect sexual-harassment allegations. (New York Times)

Billions of dollars held by private entities, including charities and institutional endowments, are being overseen by a self-policing accounting industry that rarely blows the whistle on incompetence or bad behavior in its ranks. (Wall Street Journal — subscription)

New Grant Opportunities

Your Chronicle subscription includes free access to GrantStation’s database of grant opportunities. GrantStation is on hiatus, but we’ll share the latest listings when it returns.

Economic education. The Calvin K. Kazanjian Economics Foundation supports new approaches to helping people more fully understand how economics can play a role in making their lives, their communities, and the world. Grants are provided to economic education programs in four areas: pilot projects, new marketing capability efforts to reach more people served, student programs to generate demand for economic education, and economic education programs in a recently mandated state. Grants generally range from $10,000 to $25,000. U.S. nonprofit organizations with at least five years of history are eligible to apply. The upcoming deadline for letters of interest is September 10.

Hunger relief. The Food Lion Feeds Charitable Foundation supports nonprofits within 20 miles of a Food Lion store in Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. The focus is on reducing the number of children at risk of hunger by helping nonprofits with funds to provide more fresh, nutritious food for families. The application deadline is September 15.