A new report, The Financial Health of Greater Philadelphia Nonprofits, illuminates the dire financial risks and challenges nonprofits were facing before the pandemic, risks that have only been exacerbated by the onset of COVID-19.
The findings and format of the report provide a unique opportunity for nonprofit leaders, board members, philanthropic and government funders, and regional observers to review comparative organizational analyses by sub-field (e.g., health, arts & culture, human services), as well as by size. This new tool, made possible with support from HealthSpark Foundation, The Scattergood Foundation, and United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey – in partnership with The Greater Philadelphia Nonprofit Repositioning Fund and BCT Partners – supports efforts of individual organizational leaders and boards to benchmark their financial performance within a comparable pool – a common for-profit industry practice.
The region’s nonprofits provide services that support quality of life, health, safety, and well-being for all. The COVID-19 pandemic has only heightened the necessity of these services as nonprofits have played a critical role on the front lines of the public health and economic response. Yet, despite the cornerstone role nonprofits play in our communities, the report demonstrates that the nonprofit sector is at imminent risk. For decades, nonprofits have experienced a growing number of financial pressures – due to government contracts that fail to pay the full cost of contracted services, changes in giving practices and priorities in the philanthropic community, changes in tax laws governing taxpayer deductions for charitable purposes and more. The pandemic has only increased demand for nonprofit services as record numbers of people are underemployed and unemployed, particularly in communities of color where we see higher rates of coronavirus exposure and death, as well as higher rates of job loss and financial distress.
The report’s authors and funders note, “The magnitude of this pandemic – indeed, this moment in our country’s history – calls upon all of us to do more than strive to return to business as usual… If we are to see a thriving community of social purpose agencies emerge from the current crisis, it will take the collective imagination and coordination of [public and private sector] actors.”
To download the report, go here.