September 26, 2003
The Canadian Council of Social Development (CCSD) has produced a seminal report, "Funding Matters: The Impact of Canada's New Funding Regime on Nonprofit and Voluntary Organizations." This study analyses changing funding patterns throughout Canada and their impact on voluntary sector organizations. The findings of this study compliment the results of community-based research conducted in Halton in recent years that identify major funding issues and their consequent impact on the quality and accessibility of community services. Community Development Halton has prepared five Community Dispatches of the Fact Sheets prepared by CCSD for the June 2003 launch of their study. I believe this information is essential for all those in leadership roles in the nonprofit and voluntary sector. Furthermore, a workshop, Funding Matters: A Warning and An Opportunity, for senior managers, Board members, funders and concerned citizens is planned for Tuesday November 25, 2003. Katherine Scott, author of the CCSD report, will give the keynote address. Details will be available shortly.
Funders are now very reluctant to cover administrative costs that cannot be directly tied to a project or program. Organizations can typically include a portion of administrative costs, such as rent, in a project budget. But funders take a narrow view of allowable expenses and many do not permit organizations to charge any administrative fee at all.
Many study participants expressed frustration over their inability to charge - much less recoup - the real costs of their programs under the terms of many funding agreements and contracts. Moreover, the trend towards fixed-price contracting is compounding these difficulties year after year. The ramifications for nonprofit and voluntary groups are enormous:
For more information on Funding Matters: The Impact of Canada's New Funding Regime on Nonprofit and Voluntary Organizations, visit the CCSD website at: http://www.ccsd.ca/pubs/2003/fm/
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