Caroline Soffer, Political Science (HC), BMC ’20

Non-Profits in US Politics

Faculty Adviser: Marissa Golden

Field Site: American Friends Service Committee

Field Supervisor: Sok Be

Course Description:

The relationship between NGO’s (non-governmental organizations) and politics is crucial to policy development and public opinion within American Politics. This course will focus on politically oriented non-profit organizations, and how they interact within the local, state, and federal political systems. Special attention will be given to how these non-profits market different campaigns and programs towards various lawmakers and individual citizens. As the Covid-19 pandemic redirected the course of the semester, this course also morphed to explore how non-profits have responded to the international emergency and what role non-profits hold in responding directly to community needs.

Praxis Poster:


Please click here to access a PDF version of the poster.

8 thoughts on “Caroline Soffer, Political Science (HC), BMC ’20

  1. Sarah Golobish

    This provides an interesting an important look into how nonprofits have been able to mobilize and respond in these changing times. Thank you for sharing!

  2. Justine Stiftel '20

    AFSC’s core issues are quite varied in terms of who is affected and what type of problem is being solved! It’s impressive that this organization can work on such a broad array of problems. SARs-CoV-19 has caused serious difficulties that highlight disparities around the world, so I imagine there were a lot of organizations that requested aid at this time. I’m curious how AFSC compared organizations to determine which programs would be most effective in this time?

  3. Lise Reno

    Caroline, thank you for sharing your work to support the core mission of AFSC by researching funding opportunities in light of COVID. I wonder what the organization’s advocacy work will look like moving forward as restrictions for physical distancing are likely to continue for quite some time. It’s certainly a different framework that will require a lot of creative thinking. I agree with Justine’s comment that this pandemic shines a bright light on disparities that existed all along and that AFSC has been working to address. I echo her question of how does the organization like AFSC prioritize efforts at this time?

  4. Claire Eckstein Indik

    Thank you for sharing the work you have been doing this semester with AFSC! It is really interesting to learn about how nonprofits continue to operate during this challenging time. As you mention in your poster, I imagine that Rapid Response funding requires lots of organization. I’m curious if there are any tools you have used, in addition to Excel, that have helped you organize different applications deadlines and requirements.

  5. Dayna Levy

    Nice work, Caroline! What an amazingly contemporary topic – you were/are right in the mix! Thanks for the work you did, as well as for producing a visually interesting poster. Also, congratulations on graduating from BMC!

  6. Sophia McConnell

    Thank you for sharing your work! It’s interesting to see how organizations are responding during this crisis. I’m curious to see how other organizations are choosing to act.

  7. Katie Krimmel

    Caroline, thanks for sharing this perspective on the work you did with AFCS!

  8. Caroline Soffer

    Hi Justine, good question! Since AFSC works on such a broad array of issue areas, we tried to ensure there was adequate emergency funding across the board. From a philanthropic perspective, a lot of the foundations AFSC works with seemed to be designating money specifically towards helping immigrant communities. But there was more than enough emergency funding to be passed along to a wide variety of programs, not just immigration rights.

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