New York State Health Foundation recently announced it will dedicate a portion of its funding to support vital NY health non-profits to “transition to new and reorganized forms” that will be more sustainable over time. This is an excellent example of funders understanding the real impact this recession is having on NPOs and supporting proactive change.
As I have written time and again in this blog and in my articles (see “Strategies to proactively assess the impact of the recession” and “Leaner Times call for Leaner Measures”), tough economic times can be just the catalyst needed for non-profit organizations to develop new strategies to become more efficient. Strategically restructuring operations can strengthen the capacity of organizations.
Assessing your financial status, the cost per program and assessing the impact of these programs as well as implementing strategic cost containment initiatives will allow organizations to have more clarity and impact in their work and it also is often a catalyst to consider innovative approaches and collaborative initiatives such as joint ventures, outsourcing, joint purchasing programs, mergers and management service organizations.
The recession may be the catalyst the non-profit requires to seek innovative approaches to the way they operate, and now funders are starting to fund these new approaches. As non-profits would not have to pay for these services - if money is accessed through restructuring funds made available by funders, than non-profits have nothing to lose by assessing whether they are candidates for strategic and financial restructuring.
In a time where budget deficits are rising and only 12% of US non-profits expect to end the year with an operating surplus (Nonprofit Finance Fund), it’s great to see funders acting progressively to support fundamental and lasting changes in non-profit organizations. Non-profits can leverage this by becoming more intimately acquainted with their programs, assessing their impact and assessing the financial models used to fund programs and services.
Have you heard of any funders in Canada supporting similar initiatives? If so, please share! Email Betty Ferreira at firstname.lastname@example.org
Click here to read the announcement from NY State Health Foundation.
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