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In this issue:

June 11, 2004

Project Connect is National Finalist

FREE Copier Purchase Checklist

Professionals by the Book

The Value of a Volunteer

US Post Office Considering New Rules ... AFP Starts Action Campaign

Research Before You Buy

Verizon Tuition Assistance Program

Our Secrets for Better Computing

Register for Upcoming Classes

Training Schedule 






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Project Connect is Finalist for National TechGrants Awards

Project Connect has been accepted as a finalist for the TechGrants Spring 2004 Awards. With these awards, TechFoundation seeks to acknowledge nonprofit/nongovernmental organizations that are making innovative use of technology to better pursue their missions. On September 1, 2004, TechFoundation will reward six organizations with cash grants totaling $25,000.

Our thanks to Erin Dunbar, United Way of Portage County, for her nomination!! For more information about TechGrants, please visit:


Now Available: Checklist for Buying Copiers

You asked, and we did it! Project Connect has created a 4-page checklist detailing copier features to help you decide which is best for you. Use these features to specify what your requirements are and rate their importance to your buying decision. It is in Word tab-and-type format so that you can fill it out and send it to all of the salespeople you are working with before they start overloading you!!

For copies of the checklist, contact Amy Rock at 330-315-1335 or .


Professionals by the Book Starts June 2004

The Association of Fundraising Professionals North Central Ohio Chapter is excited to announce the establishment of an AFP Book Club called Professionals by the Book. The goal is to increase valuable networking opportunities with one another and at the same time share information about many topics that impact our profession.

Based on the results from the member survey, AFP will start with two groups, each based on a different "classic" in fundraising. AFP will arrange a group purchase of the books through Borders:

  • The Fundraising Planner: A Working Model for Raising the Dollars You Need, Terry & Doug Schaff ($35)

  • Conducting a Successful Annual Giving Program, Kent E. Dove, Jeffrey A. Lundauer, Carolyn P. Madvig ($55)

The first meeting for each group will be in June, when participants receive the books and agree upon a meeting and reading schedule.

Facilitators are needed for each group. The facilitator is a senior professional responsible for keeping the conversation going and developing guiding questions for each meeting.

If you are interested in participating, complete the interest form at For more information, contact Mark Scheffler at .


What's a Volunteer Worth?

According to the Independent Sector, the estimated dollar value of volunteer time is $17.19 per hour for 2003. The value of volunteer time is based on the average hourly earnings of all production and nonsupervisory workers on private nonfarm payrolls (as determined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics). INDEPENDENT SECTOR takes this figure and increases it by 12 percent to estimate for fringe benefits.

Assuming that the same number of volunteer hours was served in 2003 as in 2000, the total dollar value of volunteer time for 2003 is estimated at $266.4 billion.

For more information, visit


US Post Office Considering Changes to First Class Guidelines
Association of Fundraising Professionals Promotes Letter-Writing Campaign

The United States Postal Service (USPS) has issued a proposed rule that would change dramatically the guidelines for sending charitable solicitations and force many charities to pay First-Class postage rates for their mail.

The proposed rule no longer permits charities to distribute letters with dual purposes (e.g., education and fundraising) if it contains personal information about an individual (beyond name and address). If a nonprofit mailing piece is personalized beyond name and address, the purpose of the mailing must solely be for fundraising. Otherwise, it must be sent First Class, forcing the charity to incur additional costs as much as 20 cents per letter.

This change would be extremely burdensome for many charities that include educational materials with their solicitation letters. It would also be a difficult standard to enforce, as it could be argued that some educational material is critical for the solicitation activity so donors can understand why charities need the money.

Comments to the USPS are due by June 18, and AFP encourages all members to write a letter to the USPS encouraging it to revise the proposal. A copy of the request for comments by the USPS can be found at their website ( In addition, a sample letter is included that members can use to create their own letter to send to the USPS.


Are you getting the best deals for your technology dollar?

Don't buy anything technology-related until you've visited these three websites first!! They offer significant discounts for nonprofits with Microsoft, Dell, CDW, Adobe, and more!



Amy Rock's PC TIP:
Protect Your Computer from Summer Hazards

As cooler spring weather gives way to hot summer days, it's important to be aware of the hazards posed to your computer by the weather.

1. Lightning and electrical storms: Lightning can cause electrical surges, which can damage your computer's circuitry and fry your modem! One way to protect yourself from total meltdown is to unplug the computer and the modem every time there is a storm coming, or after each use. What a pain! The easier way is to invest in a quality surge protector that not only has outlets for your computer and monitor cords, but also your phone line. For more information on how surge protectors protect your stuff, visit

2. Heat and Humidity: You know what we mean — those incredibly wilting temperatures and air so thick you can cut it with a knife. Your computer doesn't like it any better than you do: heat is your CPU's worst enemy, and the little fan attached to it is only equipped to compensate for normal operating temperatures. Ideally, computers should be kept where the temperature does not exceed 82°F. If you don't have the luxury of air conditioning, or if the fan just isn't doing the job, consider restricting your computing hours to mornings or evenings when the temperature is likely to be cooler. Excessive humidity (greater than 75%) is also harmful. If you crank up the air condictioning to reduce the temperature, you're likely to get condensation inside the computer, so wait a while before turning on the computer to allow the air conditioner to draw out some of the moisture from the air. Putting your computer in a basement office is a great solution from a temperature standpoint, but again, watch the humidity levels. Consider a dehumidifier if your basement smells damp, even if there are no obvious signs of moisture.

3. Death by Dashboard: Just like video cassettes and your favorite 8-tracks, leaving a floppy disk on the dashboard of your car can result in grilled cheese. The heat of the sun is magnified by your car windows and can melt things beyond the point of recognition, or damage it just enough that it doesn't quite work right anymore. Save yourself the headache, and don't leave floppies or zip disks lying around in the car. CDs are more durable, but can still be damaged by excessive temperature, so why risk it?

So kick back and enjoy the lazy days of summer, but don't forget your computer's needs!


Verizon Revises Tuition Assistance Program ... Get it While You Can!

Verizon is continuing to offer one eTraining grant per year to nonprofit organizations interested in technology training.

To apply for this tuition assistance, visit If you have any questions, please call us at 330-315-1335 or e-mail .


Quickies ... for those with no time to waste!

We're starting something new in 2004: Quickies!! Unlike the regular half-day sessions, these one-to two-hour Quickies are down-and-dirty, learn-the-ropes-then-get-out-of-here-and-do-it-yourself courses.

Our next Quickies topic is Going from Word 2000 to Word 2003: Tips & Tricks to Deal with the Differences, offered June 17 from 10am-noon or July 21 from 2-4pm.  Call to register today!

Quickie courses are $20 for Project Connect Members, $35 for non-members. Watch the training calendar for new sessions!


Register for Upcoming Classes
Attend FREE by applying to the Verizon Foundation:  

Join us this summer for a refresher course, or learn something entirely new! Call 330-315-1335 or e-mail to register or receive a copy of our summer schedule. Cost is $40 per person for staff and volunteers of member organizations;$60 per person for staff and volunteers of non-member organizations.

Don't know whether your organization is a member? Visit our members page to find out: Project Connect Members

Not a member? Join Project Connect today and save! Visit for more info.

Microsoft Word

bullet Document Basics
7/13/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
bullet Tables, Merges & Macros
7/20/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
bullet Forms & Advanced Tools
7/27/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
bullet Graphics & Brochures
8/3/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
bullet Newsletters
8/10/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon

Microsoft Excel

bullet Spreadsheet Basics
06/16/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
bullet Formulas
06/23/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
bullet Advanced Tools
06/30/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
bullet Data Analysis Tools
7/7/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon


  • Setting Up Your Company
    7/8/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
  • Statements & Reports
    7/15/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
  • Intro to Access: Data Entry & Other Basics
    8/5/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
  • The Database Developers Series
    8/12/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
    8/19/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
    8/26/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
    9/2/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon
    9/9/04 - 9:00 AM - 12:00 Noon

Visit to see our latest training schedule. Or call us at 330-315-1335 and we'll fax you a copy.

As always, we are interested in hearing from you to learn how we can best meet your technology and connectivity needs. Give us a call at 330-315-1335 or e-mail us at .


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