The first lesson: Overcome capacity building misconceptions
Findings & Stats
Capacity building helps nonprofits with staff development, board training and improved technology.
Most donors interviewed view capacity building as jargon and don’t particularly like the term, but they are very interested in the topic.
Current social donors donate in many ways: family foundations, community foundations, individual giving, a giving circle, through their company.
Venture philanthropy has increased the focus on nonprofit performance and capital needs.
Nonprofits should use specific language geard to a particular type of improvement: “Nonprofit capacity building” is just too vague.
There are 3 main capacity-building interventions for nonprofits: Assessment; Technical assistance; Direct financial support.
Capacity building results can be seen at 3 levels: Program delivery; Program expansion; Program innovation and change
Statements & Quotations
However, most of the people we interviewed had never used the term “capacity building” to describe their philanthropic work, nor were they familiar with the knowledge base just described in this report.
Sometimes capacity building is labeled as just another overhead expense, and that may make it difficult for individual philanthropists to appreciate its value.
Nonprofit capacity building is seen as a “rich, practical training ground where new philanthropists get hands-on experience not just about the mechanics of grantmaking, but also about the culture of nonprofits and the issues they work on".
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