From the Minnesota Council on Foundations’ latest issue of Giving Forum:
Progress Through Evaluation
Grantmakers and nonprofits alike cite evaluating the impact of their work as their greatest challenge. How do we measure the difference a grant makes in transforming a complex community problem or moving a nonprofit closer to achieving its mission? This issue examines how Minnesota grantmakers and nonprofits are using a wide range of measures, methods and tools to assess their successes, understand their failures and change their approaches in the pursuit of impact.
Funders can build nonprofit capacity for evaluation — and other types of operating activities — by providing general support. However, Minnesota grantmakers continue to provide most dollars in the form ofprogram support.
Minnesota grantmakers allocated grant dollars like this in 2010:
- 62%: program support
- 20%: general support
- 9%: capital support
While U.S. averages looked like this:
- 53%: program support
- 22%: general support
- 14%: capital support
With general support, grantmakers help nonprofits develop evaluation capacities and thereby support stronger outcomes for Minnesota communities.