August 19, 2013

Two Top Charity Platforms Unite

New service allows charities to tell their stories on a single site

If you're looking to raise your rates or differentiate yourself from the competition, it helps to have a good story. Now a new partnership helps charities put their stories front and center.

Charting Impact, a program that enables nonprofits to report their progress, growth and effectiveness, has been integrated into the GuideStar Exchange, according to an announcement last week by BBB Wise Giving Alliance, GuideStar and Independent Sector.

GuideStar Exchange encourages nonprofit transparency on a national scale, and allows nonprofits to supplement the public information that is available from the IRS.

The integration of the two programs provides a single platform for nonprofits to connect with donors, funders, volunteers and other supporters through information sharing and storytelling.

Charting Impact was created two years ago with the help of Independent Sector, a nonprofit effectiveness advisory group. It asks nonprofit organizations to answer five questions:

  • What is your organization aiming to accomplish?
  • What are your strategies for making this happen?
  • What are your organization's capabilities for doing this?
  • How will your organization know if you are making progress?
  • What have and haven't you accomplished so far?

The statement said these five questions were carefully developed and tested by nonprofits and foundations to ensure the highest and best use for the tool.  

“One of many benefits for organizations answering Charting Impact’s questions is that the process encourages deep, meaningful conversations with stakeholders about the impact the organization has made, will make and how to bridge the gaps,” said Art Taylor, president and chief executive of BBB Wise Giving Alliance, which promotes accountability standards in the nonprofit community.

“As we share these reports with the donating public, we also seek, in part, to emphasize the importance of a charity’s accomplishments, which is essential in making a more informed giving decision.”

Charting Impact’s integration into the GuideStar Exchange program is expected to reduce nonprofits’ information-sharing burden, Jacob Harold, GuideStar’s president and chief executive, said in the statement.

“It provides a single resource for leaders looking to connect their organizations with the 3 million people who visit our website each year,” Harold said. “Moreover, nonprofits can reach millions more who visit our client and partner platforms that use GuideStar's data.”

Once a nonprofit has used the GuideStar Exchange interface to complete its report, the responses will produce a document with a unique URL that is shared on GuideStar, on the reports of charities participating in BBB Wise Giving Alliance evaluations and with other websites and information sources about nonprofits.

Reports of Independent Sector members will also appear on Independent Sector’s Web site.

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Check out these ThinkAdvisor articles on the value of storytelling:

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