Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Professional Fundraising and Politics

As discussed in previous posts of this blog, a surprising number of charities make use of professional fundraisers to solicit funds on their behalf.  The surprising part is that this occurs despite the fact these professional fundraisers often retain large portions of donations in the form of fees.  The end result many times is that the fundraisers actually get more of the donations than the charities get.  This phenomenon is present in advocacy and political groups as well, and extends to both ends of the political spectrum.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Is the Desire to Limit Overhead Stifling Advertising by Nonprofits?

Is nonprofit growth being thwarted because the need to keep accounting overhead low prevents sufficient advertising by nonprofits?  My take on this issue, featured in the Nonprofit Quarterly, is available here.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

When Summary Accounting Metrics Fall Short: The Case of Breast Cancer Charities of America

Many donors rely on summary measures of accounting performance to assess the financial propriety of nonprofits.  While accounting statements certainly provide important information about a nonprofit and its operations, a simple glance at summary measures can often fail to provide an adequate picture.  A case in point is the Breast Cancer Charities of America (BCCA).  A quick review of their website and their overall financial performance paints a picture of a growing organization committed to providing assistance and research to those suffering from breast cancer.  A deeper look into the financials reveal a more complex story.