Nonprofit Capital: How to Think Differently about Its Use in Your Organization

Understanding your nonprofit’s capital structure is a critical part of skillfully managing a sustainable nonprofit. But in the nonprofit sector the notion of capital is often misunderstood to the extent that it becomes self-limiting. Our goal for this webinar is to help participants better understand and work to optimize their organization’s capital structure, identify key sources and uses of capital, and understand how to budget for and monitor capital grants and expenditures over time. We will discuss how nonprofits typically obtain capital and how that capital can be put to use not only to acquire a hard asset like a building, but also to build the capacity of your nonprofit to recover from past economic shocks, innovate, or scale up.

Webinar Presenter: Hilda Polanco

Hilda.jpgAs Founder and CEO, Hilda has led FMA to become a go-to capacity builder where foundation and nonprofit leaders seek to address nonprofit financial management issues.

A nationally recognized and sought after leader in the field, Hilda serves the sector in many ways. Hilda was a founding member of the selection committee of the New York Nonprofit Excellence Awards, established by the New York Times and the Nonprofit Coordinating Committee.

When not speaking publicly or leading FMA’s team, she provides direct capacity building, training and coaching services to foundations and nonprofits throughout the country.

Healthy Reserves Are No Accident

FMA’s Founder and Managing Director, Hilda H. Polanco discusses the value of maintaining healthy reserves in an article entitled, Healthy Reserves Are No Accident featured in the Philanthropy Journal

“Whether to be used as a “rainy-day fund,” to help smooth out transitions during turbulent times, or to leverage an opportunity in a strategic push, few will question the value of a strong balance sheet defined by ample, liquid unrestricted net assets.”

To Read More Please Click Here

The Skills to Pay the Bills: An Evaluation of an Effort to Help Nonprofits Manage Their Finances

This study examines a Wallace Foundation-sponsored initiative aimed at improving the financial management skills and practices of 25 Chicago afterschool providers through training and coaching. Two models for this professional development were provided and each produced long-lasting improvements. Moreover, organizations receiving the less-expensive group training and coaching improved almost as much as those receiving more intensive customized coaching.  Click here to download the full report.  Click here to download the Executive Summary.

Building Stronger Nonprofits Through Better Financial Management

Please click the link below to read the thought provoking study of what nonprofits need around financial management and lessons learned on how to prevent problems.

Please click here to read the full report

Nonprofit Collaborations: Why Teaming Up Can Make Sense

Even if your nonprofit isn’t in financial trouble, your board and management should be alert to opportunities that will improve efficiency and sustainability. It’s best to do this before your nonprofit reaches crisis mode.  

For-profit companies have long recognized the value of collaborations. More nonprofits are now looking for the same benefits.

Read the full article HERE

Fiscal Fitness for Nonprofits

Stories From the Field, published by The Wallace Foundation, describes their effort to provide financial trainings to executives of high-performing organizations.

FMA’s work in Chicago with After School Programs is recognized.

Please click here to download the full article

Building Local Systems to Improve Afterschool

Better-Together-Building-Local-Systems-to-Improve-Afterschool2A new report, released on July 16, 2013 and funded by The Wallace Foundation, shares lessons from national experts on how to best expand access to high-quality after-school programs, and emphasizes the important role of cities in providing these programs, particularly in high-poverty neighborhoods.

FMA’s Founder & Managing Director, Hilda H. Polanco, discusses Building Provider Financial Know-How and shares four critial steps to help organizations strengthen their finances.  Please see page 18 of the report below

Better Together: Building Local Systems to Improve Afterschool

Administrative Management Capacity for OST Organizations


FMA recently partnered with The Wallace Foundation to conduct a study of the administrative management capacity of organizations providing out-of-school time (OST) services. Based on a sample of 16 high-performing programs in New York City and Chicago, the report concludes that many OST providers need additional investment in administrative management capacity in order to most effectively support, develop and expand their programs. While the study focuses specifically on organizations providing OST programs and services, the report’s lessons and observations should be relevant and useful to the broader nonprofit sector as well.

Please click here to download the full report.

The Key to Long Term Financial Health

Managing Director, Hilda H. Polanco, was recently featured in the New York Nonprofit Press article discussing, The Key to Long Term Financial Health Liquid Unrestricted Net Assets (LUNA).

“Everyone knows that these have been difficult times for nonprofits.  Our own research at Fiscal Management Associates (FMA) and countless other surveys by intermediaries and industry associations find that nonprofits have been struggling with cutbacks in government funding, reduced corporate and foundation grantmaking, and weakened individual giving.

These fiscal pressures have led, in many cases, to annual operating deficits and emergency use of endowment funds or other financial reserves – if nonprofits had any to begin with. While there is widespread agreement about the general problem, many individual nonprofits still need strategies and solutions for conducting a realistic assessment of their own financial situations and to implement budgetary and financial management strategies appropriate for the still very perilous times ahead.”

Click here to read the full article!

Lessons in Financial Management Pay Off for Chicago Charities

The following article featured in The Chronicle of Philanthropy discusses how FMA and The Wallace Foundation are strengthening and improving the quality of afterschool groups in the Chicago area.

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In a related article, read how Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Chicago, a participant in The Wallace Foundation’s nonprofit financial management program and client of FMA, has utilized greater transparency about their financials.

Click Here to Read More