Newsworthy Notes for Not-For-Profits
Marva M. Flanagan, CPA
Foundation Center and GuideStar join forces
The Foundation Center, which maintains the most comprehensive database on foundations and their grantmaking, is teaming up with GuideStar, an online database of about 2.7 million not-for-profits. The two are forming a new not-for-profit organization known as Candid, which will offer access to billions of pieces of data and more than 140,000 grantmaking organizations.
The organization plans to develop joint resources, align their data collections to provide more valuable information and offer training to not-for-profit and foundation employees. Among other initiatives, Candid plans to create a common grant application and reporting framework that not-for-profits can use for multiple foundations.
How to convert “social donors” to regular supporters
Almost 25% of U.S. adults identify as “social donors” who contribute through a fundraising event or peer-to-peer campaign. A new study uncovers how not-for-profits can best reel in these donors to become regular supporters.
Fundraising technology company OneCause surveyed more than 1,000 such donors. It found that those who did not receive follow-up communication are significantly less likely to say they will become regular monthly or annual contributors. The biggest factor driving likelihood to convert to regular contributors is whether social donors understand the true impact of their donations; impact matters more to them than recognition.
What do donors want after a fraud?
The very nature of not-for-profits, from their inherent trust to their limited resources for instituting preventive measures, makes them especially vulnerable to fraud. And, because they rely on their public image and donor perceptions of organizational effectiveness for continued funding, not-for-profits can find it difficult to recover financially from fraud.
A new study, published in the Journal of Accounting, Ethics & Public Policy, considered which “reputation-repairing” actions improve the likelihood that potential donors would contribute following a major misappropriation of funds. It found that, statistically, improving the board of directors’ oversight had the only significant positive effect on potential donations. But, notably, firing an executive director who was not involved in the fraud reduced both the likelihood and amount of planned giving.
Sharing “lessons from the church boardroom”
Two veterans of the Christian-based not-for-profit arena have published Lessons from the Church Boardroom, a new book with practical ideas on church board governance. Dan Busby, president of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability, and John Pearson, a board governance consultant, lay out 40 short insights for inspiring a church’s board. For example, they discuss the proper division of duties between board members and staff, outline best (and worst) practices for a church boardroom and identify meeting time-wasters.