Our Journey to Support Grantee Health

Authors:
Valerie Chang, Managing Director, Programs
Chantel Johnson, Managing Director, Evaluation
Stephanie Platz, Managing Director, Programs
Elizabeth Powley, Director of Grants Management

Healthy Indirect Costs on Project Grants

In 2020, we rolled out a new indirect cost policy that enables grantees to spend more on these essential costs. We increased our indirect cost rate to 29 percent on project grants, up from our previous rate of 15 percent. This figure was based on research we commissioned that examined the indirect costs of more than 130,000 nonprofits in the United States. The analysis showed that 29 percent was the minimum indirect cost rate associated with financially healthy organizations.

A Policy of Transparency and Improving

With this policy, we aim to be transparent and equitable across fields and organizations and to support the vitality of the essential organizations we work with. We are also committed to learning and improving on this policy as we go.

Sharing Research and Resources

Our consultant BDO FMA has shared a paper about our approach to this policy and its progress thus far. It documents the impetus for our research, how we researched, developed, and implemented the policy, and our approach to evaluating its effectiveness. And BDO FMA provides resources like the Indirect Cost Rate Calculation Guidelines and Rate Template to help organizations determine their indirect cost rates.

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