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NFF Survey Finds US Charities in Danger


Tuesday, 14th April 2009 at 4:14 pm
Staff Reporter
A Nonprofit Finance Fund Survey claims US Not for Profits are in danger with more than half of the charities expecting the recession to have long term or permanent negative effects on their organisations.

Tuesday, 14th April 2009
at 4:14 pm
Staff Reporter


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NFF Survey Finds US Charities in Danger
Tuesday, 14th April 2009 at 4:14 pm

A Nonprofit Finance Fund Survey claims US Not for Profits are in danger with more than half of the charities expecting the recession to have long term or permanent negative effects on their organisations.

America’s Not for Profits, including the "lifeline" organisations that many depend on for food, shelter, and other basic services, are strained to the breaking point, according to a survey released by Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF). The survey of 986 NFP leaders captures the financial state and particular challenges facing these organisations.

Key findings include:
– Only 12% expect to operate above break-even this year.
– Just 16% anticipate being able to cover their operating expenses in both 2009 and 2010.
– 31% don’t have enough operating cash in hand to cover more that one month of expenses, and another 31% have less than three months’ worth.
– 52% of respondents expect the recession to have a long-term (2+ years) or permanent negative financial effect on their organizations.
– 93% of lifeline organisations that provide essential services anticipate an increase in demand in 2009.

Clara Miller, President and CEO of Nonprofit Finance Fund says the survey reveals the precarious state of a sector that is continually asked to do more with less, and brings a long-standing problem into sharp relief.

The survey found that Not for Profits are taking steps to weather the recession that range from cuts to essential programs to layoffs. When asked to identify actions taken within the past 12 months or planned for the next 12 months: 39% identified "reduce or eliminate programs"; 41% identified "reduce staff or salaries"; and 23 % identified "delay payments to vendors."
Many organisations are experiencing a decline in funding even as demand increases. In 2009, 43% of respondents expect a decrease government funding; 62% expect a decrease in financial support from foundations; and 49% expect a decrease in contributions from individuals.

Nonprofit Finance Fund recommends that funders and NFPs work together to address fundamental practices and strategies, along with tactics, that will improve the strength and readiness of the sector. Many NFP leaders who responded to the survey expressed interest in exploring new ways to manage through the crisis and beyond, to continue serving their communities: 58% would like to conduct scenario planning; 52% want help communicating their financial picture to board and/or funders; and 34% are interested in program profitability analysis.

For more information and summary survey findings go to: http://www.nonprofitfinancefund.org/docs/2009/SurveyResultsSummary

The full survey results can be download at: http://www.nonprofitfinancefund.org/docs/2009/SurveyResults.pdf

About the Nonprofit Finance Fund

Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) is a national leader in nonprofit, philanthropic and social enterprise finance. Founded in 1980, NFF (www.nonprofitfinancefund.org) provides loans, access to capital and consulting services that build the capacity and the financial health of nonprofits. A leading community development financial institution with over $80 million in assets, NFF has provided over $190 million in loans and access to additional financing via grants, tax credits and capital in support of over $1 billion in projects for thousands of nonprofit clients nationwide. NFF has a staff of more than 75 serving nonprofits nationally from offices in Philadelphia, New York City, Newark, Boston, Detroit, Washington, D.C., and San Francisco.

For more information, contact:
Tricia McKenna or Crystal Noble, Louder Than Words nff@louderthanwords.com



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