Recent Trends On Desk Studies & Grant Assessments

At LAPA Fundraising we conduct many desk studies each year to help nonprofits assess the value of their fundraising program, and how to grow it. Some call the desk study an assessment. Nonetheless, the desk study is a seminal moment of high level planning, usually taking 90 days, and can be an opportune time to take a step back and see where your program priorities align with segments of foundation funders.

More than Funding Alone

While conducting the desk studies, our Grants Officers make recommendations not just on new funders, or different approaches to current funders, but we also share critical feedback on your nonprofit management structure, client service delivery design, and the most updated information about what the foundation funders are looking for.

We often make key recommendations in areas such as board development, client data collection processes, program impact evaluations,  your overall analytics capabilities, financial systems management, and best practices in program operations. By improving these elements, you will become more attractive to funders.

A Recent Trend

We have observed a recent trend among institutional funders; they are increasingly making recommendations for changes to your program designs and suggesting operational changes to the nonprofits they fund. We encourage you to hear them out and be curious as to why they seek these changes.

The funders especially seeking these changes are mostly interested in racial equity.  Overall, many funders have begun to think differently about their role in advancing social justice.  These funders have recently stated clearly (and often for the first time) that they care most about providing resources to grassroots organizations and leaders engaged in mobilizing local communities to end racism and reduce social, economic, gender, and health disparities.

In many cases, they no longer see older, well-established nonprofits as the force they once were for driving social change. Thus, many organizations are facing a formidable challenge on how to position their programs in a way that attracts a growing group of foundation funders.

LAPA approaches funders’ concerns thoughtfully and we help you develop a strong business case with the goal of better positioning your nonprofit to attract multiple stakeholders, including foundation funders, individual donors, government funders, and other funding sources such as managed care payers (in the case of value-based care concepts for the social determinants of health).

We recently did an assessment for the Children’s Defense Fund, and you can watch a two minute video about that here.

We welcome your comments about this post on the LAPA blog.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Related Posts

Grateful Person

What’s Your Answer?

For me, I am a fundraiser because I believe the nonprofit sector can do a lot more to reduce poverty; so I raise funds toward achieving that aim, toward securing the necessary capital for designing and implementing anti-poverty policies and program solutions. With Gandhi, I believe that “Poverty is the worst form of violence.” That’s why I’m a fundraiser, and why I’m also committed to the constant improvement of my vocation. I wrote more about what a fundraiser does at this blog post.

Read More »
Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday

GivingTuesday 2022 is coming up, Tuesday, November 29th, and it’s a banner day for many nonprofits. Some use it to launch their year-end campaign. No other day creates the same worldwide feeling of philanthropy and good will. Often stylized as #GivingTuesday for the purposes of hashtag activism, GivingTuesday occurs on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving in the United States. It’s touted as a “global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world.” Perhaps these LAPA blog resources will help you harness the power of GivingTuesday: GivingTuesday: You Have A Decision To Make Countdown

Read More »
Giving

Year-End Giving

Year-End Giving
You never hear people say, “I know when I am.”  But it’s often useful to know where you stand in a temporal sense.  From a fundraiser’s point of view, it’s important to know where you are timewise  when we approach the end of the year.  One of out of every three dollars contributed to nonprofit organizations is donated in the month of December alone!

Read More »