Nonprofit Challenges: What Foundations Can Do

Publication date: 
September, 2013

Nonprofit organizations face a long list of challenges that starts with fundraising and can include everything from meeting increasing demands for services to utilizing technology most effectively. Who do they turn to for assistance as they grapple with these issues? One source of assistance and support can be foundations, which have a vested interest in nonprofits’ success—and the resources to help.

To help foundations understand whether nonprofits feel their challenges are well-understood and to raise awareness of the areas in which more foundation assistance could be beneficial, The Center for Effective Philanthropy (CEP) surveyed a panel of 296 nonprofit executive directors. CEP asked these leaders to reflect on how challenging each of 25 issues is to their organizations. For issues not related to contributed revenue, they were asked to indicate whether or not they believe foundations are in a position to help, and whether they are looking for more help from foundations. The data clearly show that nonprofits are not looking to foundations to solve all their problems. But in some crucial areas, they are looking for more help and do not believe foundations are doing all they could. 

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