Our State of the Nonprofit Sector Survey is a widely cited barometer of US nonprofits' programmatic, operational, and financial health.
Haga clic aquí para ver la versión en español
Haga clic aquí para ver la versión en español
When times got tough, government, philanthropy, and community members turned to nonprofits; 71% of survey respondents saw an increase in service demand during the pandemic. Nonprofits organized food drives and distributed other necessities for people in their communities who were sick or at risk, or who had lost jobs due to the pandemic. Many government, foundation, and individual supporters recognized that nonprofits were on the frontlines for our physical and mental well-being, and quickly made flexible or unrestricted funding available to support these essential community services.
Imagine our wonder to be able to relay in this moment that nonprofit survey respondents report being in a stronger financial position than they were pre-pandemic. At the same time, the majority of our survey respondents reported that they continue to face financial challenges: achieving long-term financial sustainability, covering the full costs of their operations, and raising unrestricted funding foremost among them. While we should celebrate nonprofits’ relative strength in the present, we must also take action to ensure these gains are preserved well into the future.
Events of the last two years also accelerated a racial reckoning in this country. The murders of innocent Black Americans like George Floyd and Breonna Taylor sparked widespread calls for racial justice. The anti-Asian attacks in places like Atlanta and San Francisco ignited the Stop Asian Hate movement. As with the COVID-19 response, nonprofits were on the frontlines of these movements for racial justice and equity. We asked survey respondents: Is your organization working toward advancing racial equity? We also asked questions to understand: Is the sector more broadly moving forward on racial equity? Did these racial reckonings translate to more equitable funding for BIPOC-led organizations?
In a sector with such a large power imbalance between who controls the money and who uses it, there are always financial challenges and inequities. We gathered data to compare the experiences of BIPOC-led (Black, Indigenous, and person of color) organizations with those of white-led organizations. Despite the many commitments to racial equity and to diversity, equity and inclusion, long-standing inequities persist in the nonprofit funding system that favor white-led organizations. For example, BIPOC-led organizations had less access to unrestricted funding and corporate donations than their white-led counterparts.
We also can’t help but wonder about “survivorship bias”: What about the organizations that closed their doors during the COVID-19 pandemic? Who were they? Were financially strong nonprofits more likely to take our survey? While these questions remain, we are pleased to be able to share the survey responses of 1000+ strong, dedicated, and resilient nonprofits across the country.
NFF also took a deeper look at the experiences of the Los Angeles community to understand our work in this dynamic community – especially for BIPOC-led (Black, Indigenous, and people of color) and serving nonprofits.
Watch a series of three videos with more highlights about what we learned from the 2022 State of the Nonprofit Sector Survey.
In this four-part webinar series, NFF staff take a deeper dive into the national results of the Survey.
About the Survey
Who took the 2022 NFF State of the Nonprofit Sector Survey? Demographics of survey respondents, including geography, sector, budget size, communities served, and racial identity of leadership.
Looking in greater detail at the racial/ethnic identity of nonprofit leaders, respondents came from organizations with the following leadership (note, respondents could select more than one identity, so the total slightly exceeds 100%):
Important definitions for comparisons between BIPOC-led and white-led organizations and sizes of organizations.
In the ensuing results, we frequently point out the disparity between BIPOC- and white-led organizations; however, we also recognize that “BIPOC” (Black, Indigenous, or person of color) as a category merges and could potentially obscure the different experiences of specific racial/ethnic groups. So, we occasionally highlight the specific responses of Latinx/Hispanic-led, Black-led, and AAPI-led (Asian American/Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander) nonprofits, where there are notable differences in the data amongst these groups.
Additionally, for purposes of our analysis:
We also defined the size of organizations using the following budget ranges:
What’s new in the 2022 survey?
Conducted in partnership with EVITARUS and Ambit 360, we canvassed nonprofit leaders of color to get input on the issues they’d like to see addressed in the Survey. Incorporating their feedback, we asked a series of questions to provide data you can use to spearhead change for your organization.
2022 Survey expanded to:
We are grateful to respondents for all of the important work they do every day, and for taking our survey and entrusting us with their stories.
Check out our three-part video series diving into the key themes and highlights from 2022 survey data.
Email [email protected] for questions, historical data, and deeper analysis options (charges may apply).
NFF thanks the Bank of America Charitable Foundation for generously supporting the 2022 State of the Nonprofit Sector Survey, and for its ongoing support of the Survey since 2010. The 2022 survey was conducted in partnership with EVITARUS and Ambit 360.