DONORS: 5 Things Nonprofits Want You to Know

With support from the S. D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation, we are broadening the scope of our knowledge resources to apply insights to large donors who are giving significantly to support nonprofit causes. We believe that some of our data-driven insights on effectiveness are not particular to foundations, but are broadly applicable and useful regardless of the structure that major donors use for their giving. Donors: 5 Things Nonprofits Want You to Know is CEP’s first resource to bring those data-driven insights to this new audience.

For this resource, we looked at what CEP has heard through candid, anonymous feedback from more than 100,000 nonprofit leaders about what they believe donors can do to best support nonprofit organizations to do their most effective work. When we looked at what we’ve learned from analyzing this perception data, collected over the past 15 years, we saw five distinct themes for what nonprofits want their donors to know, but may be unable to tell them directly due to the power imbalance between the two:

  1. Understanding the needs of the constituents that nonprofits are serving is essential for donors and nonprofits alike.
  2. Strong relationships between donors and nonprofits are grounded in understanding and openness.
  3. Generous, unrestricted financial support best enables nonprofit leaders to strengthen their organizations.
  4. Most nonprofits want to assess their performance so they can learn and improve, and they could use more support to do this.
  5. Providing support beyond money can help nonprofit staffs strengthen their skills, make important connections, and better pursue their missions.

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Content Partner: Center for Effective Philanthropy

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Publication/Event Date:

June 2018

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Center for Effective Philanthropy



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