Financial management know-how is often a weak spot for nonprofit organizations—afterschool included. Strong financial management, however, is critical to ensure students, families and communities receive the best services possible.
The Wallace Foundation, in collaboration with Fiscal Management Associations, created StrongNonprofits.org—a website offering more than 60 free tools, how-to's, articles and other features to help afterschool programs manage finances successfully.
The Wallace Foundation and Fiscal Management Associates note that strong financial management involves four key elements.
With budgeting and financial analysis, you can use your resources strategically to help achieve your afterschool program's goals. Good planning finds the most effective ways to deploy your organization's resources to meet your objectives.
Regularly review financial results to ensure you're using resources according to your plan and that you're on track to meet your organization's objectives.
A strong infrastructure for planning and monitoring requires your organization has software that provides data and assists in analysis, as well as staff who know how to use information.
An engaged, knowledgeable board is essential to ensure your organization is meeting its objectives and fulfilling its mission. Directors should oversee organization activities and assess whether the program is meeting legal, financial and strategic obligations.
A self-assessment guide to help you and your organization understand where—and how—you could improve in each of these four areas and successfuly fulfill your mission is available at StrongNonprofits.org.