Ending the Nonprofit Starvation Cycle
Today's approaches to nonprofit funding aren't building strong grantee organizations. Let’s change that.
By Jeri Eckhart-Queenan, Michael Etzel, and Julia Silverman
Presidents of five leading foundations have agreed to experiment with practices and policies to address chronic underfunding of their grantees’ indirect costs. Said one president: “We have engaged because we have a responsibility to put forward solutions. That’s a breakthrough.”
The article above and those below originally appeared in Bridgespan's supplement on ending the nonprofit starvation cycle in the September 2019 issue of The Chronicle of Philanthropy.
By Jeffrey Moore
Many nonprofit leaders don’t know how to talk about their true costs. Making the case for better funding formulas requires nesting the need in a bigger story about the impact of nonprofits in American communities.
By Ellen LaPointe, Sandi Clemente McKinley, and Sara Davis
Foundations should provide flexible grants and sufficient overhead funding to cover grantees’ actual costs. The time to lead this movement forward is now.
By Andrea Wilson and Hilda Polanco
How can foundations and nonprofits bridge the gap between project funding and actual costs? Foundations need a standardized approach to calculating indirect costs.
By Josh Solomon and Isa Ballard
Funders can do one simple thing to promote more open conversation with grantees about adequate indirect costs reimbursement: state on their websites and in their grant guidelines their approach to indirect costs.
Why Funders Should Pay for the True Costs of Nonprofits’ Work — Not Just the Direct Project Expenses
By Norma Altshuler and Marissa Tirona
In spring 2018, the Ford, Hewlett, MacArthur, Open Society, and Packard Foundations conducted a pilot project to explore how well current project grants provided for nonprofits’ indirect costs. With the help of external financial experts, who worked one on one with 22 grantees to calculate each organization’s indirect-cost rate, the funders learned firsthand that driving change and having impact requires long-term flexible funding.
By Eric Walker
Nonprofits funded by U.S. government grants receive full reimbursement for administrative costs. Those not receiving government grants need to master five low-overhead survival skills.
By Richard Modest and Aidan Eyakuze
The research and advocacy work of an East African NGO calls for flexible, long-term financial resources, something many funders are reluctant to provide. To cope, the organization had to master financial survival skills.