Sustainability

When best-laid plans go awry: Prepare with reserves

By Lauren Kreutzinger, supervisor, VonLehman In any business, in any organization, even the best-laid plans can go awry. In the nonprofit sector, this can lead to disaster. But that doesn’t have to be the case — if you’re prepared. For example, a major grant your organization counted on could fall through. Or your facilities might […]

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Nonprofit startups are just like their counterparts

By Sarah E. Needleman, reporter, The Wall Street Journal | What’s different about building a successful for-profit and nonprofit startup? Not much, according to Paul Graham, founder of Y Combinator, an elite accelerator program in Mountain View, Calif., that accepted a nonprofit for the first time this month, Watsi.org. “You could never tell there was […]

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Collaborative disruption: nonprofit world

By Kyle Zimmer, president and CEO, First Book | Changing the world is a complicated business. You need a powerful mission that will inspire and motivate people; you need a problem that needs solving and an effective way to solve it. But you also need funding. It’s critical, but rarely the part that inspires people. […]

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A social entrepreneur transforms nonprofit to profit-making

By Esha Chhabra, contributor, The New York Times | In 2013, The New York Times published a case study about a social entrepreneur, Saul Garlick, discussing what kind of legal structure would be best for his enterprise, ThinkImpact, which encourages entrepreneurship in third-world communities. He fundamentally had three options: continue as a nonprofit, go commercial, […]

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Government reimbursement rules

By Council of Nonprofits | Governments at all levels – local, state, and federal – that hire nonprofits to deliver services are now required to reimburse nonprofits for the reasonable indirect costs (sometimes called “overhead” or “administrative” costs) they incur on behalf of governments when federal dollars are part of the funding stream. The new […]

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Putting overhead under scrutiny

By Lynn Sygiel, editor, Charitable Advisors | So you donate money to your favorite charity, and you find out later that the money went to buy a new roof. Or new computers. Or to replace the muffler on the company van that shuttles needy clients around the city. Was this a good use of your […]

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The human factor

What’s the best way to solicit donations for a charity? New research suggests that telling donors that none of their money will go toward overhead may be very effective at raising money. But it also comes with a few potential pitfalls. In a study published in Science on Thursday (10/30/2014), a team of researchers showed […]

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Dear Charity Navigator, please move forward thoughtfully

Last November, Charity Navigator’s board approved a plan to scale up operations, planning to double the number of charities it rates by the end of 2016. In April, when its CEO Ken Berger suddenly best online casino resigned, the California Association of Nonprofits – an organization of 9,400 member nonprofits — thought it time to […]

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