05 Oct Creating a Nonprofit Impact Report in the Time of COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic has hurt businesses and nonprofit organizations. Revenues have fallen, companies reduced their number of employees, and nonprofits have lost donations. The economic impact of COVID-19 makes it more critical than ever to create nonprofit impact reports that give people accurate information that they can understand at a glance.
Key Parts of a Nonprofit Impact Report
Nonprofits use annual reports to communicate their stated missions and how they benefit communities. The reports also need to show readers how much money nonprofits collected and how they used those funds.
Key parts that should appear in your nonprofit impact report include:
- A clear mission statement.
- A short summary of the steps or programs you use to achieve your nonprofit’s mission.
- Quotes from people involved in the nonprofit’s activities.
- The amount of money raised during the year.
- The nonprofit’s revenue sources.
- How funds were invested to grow wealth.
- The amount of money given to other charitable organizations.
- A breakdown that explains the impact of your nonprofit’s activities.
- A call-to-action that encourages people to get involved with your group.
2020 impact reports should also include a section on how the organization responded to the COVID-19 crisis. Reach Capital’s 2020 Impact Report, for example, has a section called “COVID-19 Response: Stepping Up in a Time of Crisis.” The section explains how Reach Capital helped support the educational needs of students and families during the pandemic.
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How COVID-19 Has Affected Nonprofit Organizations
Charitable giving fell by 6% during the first quarter of 2020. High unemployment and falling revenues in many industries make it difficult for people to support nonprofit organizations as much as they have in recent years.
Adding a COVID-19 section to your next impact report could make your organization more competitive for limited funds. Many institutions, businesses, and individuals will want to know how nonprofits responded to the crisis before they donate money or distribute grants. When creating this part of your nonprofit impact report, you may want to detail:
- How much money your organization spent on programs related to COVID-19 relief.
- The percentage of your budget spent on COVID-19 programs.
- New initiatives that your nonprofit started to help people during the pandemic.
- Data that shows the success of your initiatives, such as how many students you served, how many families you fed, or how many households received support.
People and organizations may not contribute as much this year as they have during more stable periods, but they still plan to support nonprofits as well as they can. Show that you played an important role in helping during the pandemic to connect with potential donors and explain how you pivoted to address a sudden crisis.
Choose a Digital Impact Report to Promote Fundraising
The more people you reach, the more opportunities you have to raise funds. The digital option eliminates geographic barriers. When you release a digital impact report, you can reach people outside of your region. You may also find that you can communicate with a larger audience without spending more money on printing materials and labor.
Digital impact reports create an experience that potential donors can digest quickly. Print versions often look intimidatingly long, which means many people will not pay attention to them. A digital report can provide a pleasing layout with sections that expand and contract as the reader clicks them.
Digital reports also expand your media options. With print, you can only include photographs and other still images. A digital report can enhance a reader’s experience with digital and audio.
Nonprofit organizations will likely face more funding competition in 2020 and 2021 than they have in more than a decade. Creating a digital impact report that demonstrates your response to COVID-19 could help your group attract more money from supporters.