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Freedom's Way Heritage Association

 94 Jackson Road, Suite 311
 Devens, MA 01434
[P] (978) 772-3654
[F] (978) 7729807
www.freedomsway.org
mail@freedomsway.org
Patrice  Todisco
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INCORPORATED: 1994
 Printable Profile (Summary / Full)
EIN 04-3219394

LAST UPDATED: 01/16/2019
Organization DBA --
Former Names --
Organization received a competitive grant from the Boston Foundation in the past five years No

Summary

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Mission StatementMORE »

We connect the people, places and communities of the Freedom's Way National Heritage Area through preservation, conservation and educational initiatives that interpret, protect and promote their natural, historical and cultural resources, 
 

Mission Statement

We connect the people, places and communities of the Freedom's Way National Heritage Area through preservation, conservation and educational initiatives that interpret, protect and promote their natural, historical and cultural resources, 
 

FinancialsMORE »

Fiscal Year Oct 01, 2018 to Sept 30, 2019
Projected Income $375,000.00
Projected Expense $375,000.00

ProgramsMORE »

  • Declaring Independence: Then & Now
  • Heritage Stories: Visonaries and Experimenters
  • Hidden Treasures
  • Thoreau Trail

Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2017 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2016 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

For more details regarding the organization's financial information, select the financial tab and review available comments.


Overview

Mission Statement

We connect the people, places and communities of the Freedom's Way National Heritage Area through preservation, conservation and educational initiatives that interpret, protect and promote their natural, historical and cultural resources, 
 

Background Statement

The Freedom’s Way Heritage Association, founded in 1994 and incorporated as a 501c(3) nonprofit organization, was identified in the Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area enabling legislation as the local coordinating entity for the heritage area.

As a partnership endeavor, the Freedom’s Way Heritage Association serves as facilitator, host, and guide for heritage area-wide presentation and activities. The Association recognizes the special identity of the region and works to preserve and enhance the natural and cultural resources that define its sense of place. The heritage area’s programs and initiatives are offered by organizations within the region and coordinated by the Freedom’s Way Heritage Association.

As a catalyst for communication and collaboration, the Association is strategic and entrepreneurial in its approach to promote a place‐based identity for the heritage area that celebrates and protects its natural, historic, and cultural resources.

The heritage area has a special relationship with the National Park Service and Minute Man National Historical Park based on the organizational structure defined in the heritage area’s enabling legislation and upon shared interests in historical significance, story, and the mission of identifying and preserving natural and historic resources for the benefit of future generations.

 

Impact Statement

Accomplishments during the past three years:
  • Completed a comprehensive management plan for the 45 communities within the heritage area that was approved by the Secretary of the Interior
  • Successfully implemented an effective heritage area wide social media platform, including a bi-monthly e-newsletter showcasing the heritage area's stories and partner events and a content rich website
  • Launched a series of free region-wide programs, including Hidden Treasures and Declaring Independence: Then & Now, working in collaboration with more than 225 partner organizations and reaching more than 25,000 people
  • Leveraged more than one million dollars of donated in-kind volunteer hours, goods and services in support of our National Park Service funding
 
 

Needs Statement

Needs for the coming year:
 
Having developed a solid core of unique and engaging programs that showcase the heritage area's natural, cultural and historical resources we are looking to develop a complimentary suite of interactive educational materials and activities to reach new and diverse audiences.
 
  • Declaring Independence: Then & Now:  Additional funding to make the program available to students and teachers
  • Heritage Stories: We have just launched Heritage Stories: Visionaries & Experimenters, a new multi-year initiative designed to share the stories of the individuals whose actions, discoveries and inventions shaped social, intellectual and cultural innovations, making a difference in the communities within the heritage area and America with a pilot audio story of Barzillai Lew a free- born black from Groton who played his way into history during the Revolutionary War.  We need resources to develop an additional 20 stories and launch a "Make a Difference" campaign in the heritage areas with a component geared towards youth.    

CEO Statement

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Board Chair Statement

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Geographic Area Served

CENTRAL REGION, MA
METROWEST REGION, MA
GREATER BOSTON REGION, MA

 Serves 45 communities in two states:
Massachusetts: Acton, Arlington, Ashburnham, Ashby, Ayer, Bedford, Bolton, Boxborough, Carlisle, Clinton, Concord, Devens, Dunstable, Fitchburg, Gardner, Groton, Harvard, Hudson, Lancaster, Leominster, Lexington, Lincoln, Littleton, Lunenburg, Malden, Maynard, Medford, Pepperell, Princeton, Shirley, Sterling, Stow, Sudbury, Townsend, Westford, Westminster, Winchendon, Woburn
 
New Hampshire: Amherst  Brookline, Greenville, Hollis. Mason, Milford, Nashua and New Ipswich.
 

Organization Categories

  1. Arts,Culture & Humanities - Historical Societies & Historic Preservation
  2. Environment - Natural Resources Conservation & Protection
  3. Community Improvement, Capacity Building - Alliances & Advocacy

Independent research has been conducted on this organization's theory of change or on the effectiveness of this organization's program(s)

Under Development

Programs

Declaring Independence: Then & Now

 Offered in partnership with the American Antiquarian Society and with support from the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati, Declaring Independence: Then & Now tells the story of people within the Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area in the spring and summer of 1776. Using their own words, it portrays how they debated and celebrated the declaring of independence from Great Britain.

 Each presentation, which includes a narrated reading of the Declaration of Independence, interspersed with the words spoken by local individuals as researched by citizen-historians, is unique. Presentations are held in historic venues, often the same ones in which the original discussions occurred.

 In FY2018 we offered 17 performances of Declaring Independence: Then & Now that were shared with 850 participants. Declaring Independence: Then & Now continues to evolve as each community explores its part in the story of American independence and in our on-going aspirations for freedom and equality for everyone. It is a goal to develop an educational component, similar to that created by the producers of the Broadway Musical Hamilton, to offer Declaring Independence: Then & Now to students.  

 
Civic engagement and interest in our nation’s founding principles are high and Declaring Independence: Then & Now provides an interactive forum in which to explore both. Audiences are inspired and challenged by hearing the Declaration of Independence anew, providing an opportunity for reflection about what the words mean in contemporary society
Budget  --
Category  Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other
Population Served Families
Program Short-Term Success  During FY2018 we offered 17 performances of Declaring Independence: Then & Now that were shared with 850 participants. Declaring Independence: Then & Now continues to evolve as each community explores its part in the story of American independence and in our on-going aspirations for freedom and equality for everyone. It is a goal to develop an educational component, similar to that created by the producers of the Broadway Musical Hamilton, to offer Declaring Independence: Then & Now to students.  
Program Long-Term Success  It is a goal to develop an educational component, similar to that created by the producers of the Broadway Musical Hamilton, to offer Declaring Independence: Then & Now to students.  
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  Now in its second year

Heritage Stories: Visonaries and Experimenters

 

An exciting multi-year initiative that celebrates those visionary individuals within the Heritage Area that have been at the forefront of ideas and events that have shaped the region and provided new ways of thinking about America and the world.

 

A total of ten Heritage Stories will be told during its first year using digital technology, augmented by a mixture of sound-recording, photography, video and special effects. Each will be narrated by staff, enthusiasts or volunteers who work with the Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area.

 

The stories will provide insights into the untold stories of individuals from within the Heritage Area that have been at the forefront of social, intellectual and cultural innovations that relate to new things or ideas that the world, or at least Americans, had never seen before, proving enormously influential on American culture.   These are individuals that were either born within the 45 communities of the Freedom's Way National Heritage Area or lived and worked here, influenced by either the place they came from or the place they came to making Freedom's Way “A Region of “Firsts” in American Invention, Thought, and Design.” 

 

During the first year the following stories, chosen to represent a diverse collection of individuals, will be developed as sound recordings.  

 

Loammi Baldwin, Woburn, MA:  1744 - 1807
Father of American Civil Engineering revered for prized Baldwin Apple

 

Josephine Wright Chapman, Fitchburg, MA:  1867 - 1943
America's Earliest and Most Successful Woman Architect

 

Tilden Freeman, Malden, MA:  1883 -1980
Considered one of the founders of the National Park Service and father of interpretation

 

Daniel Chester French, Concord, MA:  1850 - 1931
One of the most prolific and acclaimed American sculptors of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries

 

Hutchinson Family Singers, Milford, NH:  1841 - 1855
America’s First Social Activist Performers

 

Henrietta Swan Leavitt, Lancaster, MA; 1868 - 1921
Astronomer whose research changed the field of Astronomy

 

Ellen Swallow Richards, Dunstable, MA:  1842 - 1911
First woman Graduate of MIT; Mother of Home Economics

 

Belinda Sutton, Medford, MA:  Medford, MA: 1737 - 1781 
An enslaved woman whose petition for a pension from Issac Royall is cited as one of the first cases of reparation for slavery and the slave trade  

 

Vivian Walworth, Concord, MA:   1922 - 2016
Trailblazing Scientist in Instant Photography and 3D Imaging 
 
EO Wilson, Lexington, MA:  1929 -
Father of Sociobiology and Biodiversity

 

The completed sound recording of Barzillai Lew, a free-born Black who played the fife at the Battle of Bunker Hill and Fort Ticonderoga and has his portrait hanging at the US State Department in Washington, DC. can be heard here: http://freedomsway.org/programs/heritage-stories/
Budget  45,000
Category  Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other
Population Served Families
Program Short-Term Success  As we are in first year of the project we are unable to report on short-term successes
Program Long-Term Success 
Heritage Stories: Experimenters and Visionaries has been designed as a vehicle to reach new audiences by telling the stories of the people from within the Freedom's Way Heritage Area that made a difference through innovation and experimentation.  A primary goal of the project is to encourage all of us to do the same.
 
Their work traverses disciplines, gender, time and space reflecting the rich diversity of creative thought that has been a hallmark of the heritage area.  
 
As for success, we plan to develop Heritage Stories into an interactive program with educational components linked to experiential learning for families within the region.  This phase of the project is currently in development and would benefit from  resources and expertise. 
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  The program is still in development expected to launch in Spring of 2019.

Hidden Treasures

Offered during the month of May, Hidden Treasures celebrates the region’s natural, cultural, and historical resources by showcasing the work of the many organizations that steward and interpret these sites, artifacts, and traditions. 

Featuring the unique people, places and objects that are located within the 45 communities of the Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area, Hidden Treasures presents activities free of charge in a variety of venues and formats.  These creative and engaging programs introduce the treasures throughout the Freedom's Way National Heritage Area, and offer a new way in which to explore the cultural, natural and historical resources of the region.

A Hidden Treasures Photo Contest, launched in FY2018 has added additional opportunities for engagement.

Budget  --
Category  Community Development, General/Other
Population Served Families
Program Short-Term Success 
Having just completed its fourth year, Hidden Treasures, continues to grow.  In FY2018, through a coordinated branding and marketing effort aimed at increasing exposure and inspiring residents and visitors to discover their place in the Heritage Area, Hidden Treasures offered 80 unique events in coordination with 83 local, state and federal partners; nearly a third of which were first time participants.  More than 10,500 attended.   
Program Long-Term Success 

Hidden Treasures has been designed to promote the cultural, natural and historic resources in the 45 communities within the heritage area with a goal of enhancing the sense of place.   Increased visibility and promotion of the organizations which steward this remarkable places is key and success will be measured by the increase in participation of diverse constituencies. 

 
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success 
In its first year as a program (2015) Hidden Treasures took place over two weekends in May and offered 25 programs (each with an individual sponsoring partner organization).   As noted above, in FY 2018 the program offered more than three times that many free activities. 
 
Another significant measure of success has been the development and use of a dedicated website, Discover Hidden Treasures.

Thoreau Trail

In 1842 Henry David Thoreau travelled from Concord, MA to Mount Wachusett in Princeton,MA, a journey which he recorded in the essay, A Walk to Wachusett.  Working with communities and partners throughout the region, the Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area is working to create a recreational trail as an interpretive walking experience in the spirit of Thoreau’s essay.  The Thoreau Trail project was initiated in 2017 as a Thoreau Bicentennial Legacy Project with support from the National Park Service.

 

The Thoreau Trail will utilize existing trail networks as well as potential new connections within the ten communities Thoreau traversed during his walk from Walden to Wachusett and be between 50 to 60 miles in length, depending on its design.  Interpretive and educational media that help relate the story of the American conservation movement through the words of Thoreau will be developed as part of the project.  

 

During FY2018, Freedom's Way is meeting with the communities through which the trail will pass.  Funds are being sought to complete the feasibility study, develop an identity and develop an interpretive framework for the trail.
Budget  35,000
Category  Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other
Population Served Families
Program Short-Term Success 
In our first year of planning, we sponsored a multi-day hike of the entire route in partnership with local communities and the Massachusetts Walking Tour.  Each evening a community concert/performance was held in a local venue by local artists and musicians in partnership with the Massachusetts Walking Tour.   More than 30 individuals hiked the route. 
 
This activity provided visibility as well as momentum for the Trail's eventual realization.  It also served as an opportunity to present Thoreau's vision to new audiences. 
Program Long-Term Success 
The Thoreau Trail will connect the community of Concord, Massachusetts to Mount Wachusett in Princeton following the spirit of Thoreau's essay "A Walk to Wachusett."  While its primary focus is to create a recreational walking trail, the trail will also serve as an important connector for other regional trail systems including the Mid-State trail and Bay Circuit Trails. 
 
Success will be realized once each segment is identified, interpretive materials and or systems developed and the route is well established and embraced by those who wish to explore Thoreau's journey.   Connections to community activities and programs is also desired.   
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  Planning for the trail is currently ongoing.  Resources are needed to develop the interpretive framework and infrastructure.

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Management


CEO/Executive Director Ms. Patrice A. Todisco
CEO Term Start Nov 2013
CEO Email ptodisco@freedomsway.org
CEO Experience
With a background in cultural landscape management, urban planning and landscape design, Patrice has more than thirty years of leadership experience in the public and non-profit sectors managing organizations, projects and processes within greater Boston that preserve, expand and enhance the public realm and urban open space.
 
As a writer, landscape historian and independent researcher, she explores themes relating to culture, design and the environment.
Co-CEO --
Co-CEO Term Start --
Co-CEO Email --
Co-CEO Experience --

Former CEOs and Terms

Name Start End
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Senior Staff

Name Title Experience/Biography
Ms. Patrice Todisco Executive Director --

Awards

Award Awarding Organization Year
-- -- --

Affiliations

Affiliation Year
-- --
Member of state association of nonprofits? Yes
Name of state association Alliance of National Heritage Areas

External Assessments and Accreditations

External Assessment or Accreditation Year
-- --

Collaborations

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CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Foundation Comments

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Staff Information

Number of Full Time Staff 2
Number of Part Time Staff 2
Number of Volunteers 338
Number of Contract Staff 2
Staff Retention Rate % --

Staff Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 2
Hispanic/Latino: 0
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 2
Male: 0
Not Specified 0

Plans & Policies

Organization has Fundraising Plan? Under Development
Organization has Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 10
Management Succession Plan --
Business Continuity of Operations Plan --
Organization Policies And Procedures Under Development
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy --
State Charitable Solicitations Permit --
State Registration --

Risk Management Provisions

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Reporting and Evaluations

Management Reports to Board? Yes
CEO Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency No N/A

Governance


Board Chair Ms. Margaret E Bagdonas
Board Chair Company Affiliation Retired
Board Chair Term Nov 2013 -
Board Co-Chair --
Board Co-Chair Company Affiliation --
Board Co-Chair Term -

Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Mr. Anthony Arcieri Harvard University Voting
Ms. Margaret Bagdonas Community Volunteer Voting
Mr. Tim Castner Nashoba Regional High School Voting
Ms. Margaret Coppe Community Volunteer Voting
Mr. Peter Lowitt Devens Enterprise Commission Voting
Mr. Will Ludt Community Volunteer Voting
Mr. Stephen Meno Nashua Regional Planning Commission Voting
Mr. James Vander Hooven Mount Wachusett Community College Voting
Ms. Sara Zarrelli TTOR - The Old Manse Voting

Constituent Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Youth Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Advisory Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Ms. Margaret Carroll-Bergman The Thoreau Farm NonVoting
Ms. Joanne DeNardo Friends of Sholan Farms NonVoting
Ms. Suzie Fonda Concord Museum NonVoting
Ms. Kara Fossey Fort Devens Museum NonVoting
Mr. Paul Funch Groton Trails Committee NonVoting
Ms. Jennifer Goodman New Hampshire Preservation Alliance NonVoting
Mr. Guy Hermann Fruitlands Museum NonVoting
Mr. James Igoe Preservation Massachusetts NonVoting
Ms. Jennifer Ingram Walden Pond State Reservation NonVoting
Ms. Sara Lundberg Arlington Historical Society NonVoting
Ms. Maria Madison The Robbins House NonVoting
Ms. Erica McAvoy Lexington Historical Society NonVoting
Mr. Jim Moran American Antiquarian Society --
Ms. Ron Morin Friends of Middlesex Fells NonVoting
Ms. Denise Morrissey Mount Wachusett State Reservation NonVoting
Ms. Celeste Philbrook-Barr Beaver Brook Association NonVoting
Mr. Steve Pickford Wayside Inn NonVoting
Ms. Renata Pomponi Mass Audubon - Drumlin Farm NonVoting
Ms. Tracie Pouilot Chair City Community Arts Center NonVoting
Ms. Whitney Retallic The Walden Woods Project NonVoting
Mr. Kent Russell Museum of Russian Icons NonVoting
Mr. Paul Shea Great American Downtown NonVoting
Ms. Jessica Strunkin 495/Metro West Partnership NonVoting
Ms. Lisa Vernegaarde Sudbury Valley Trustees NonVoting
Ms. Collins Warren The Royall House and Slave Quarters NonVoting
Ms. Rebecca Wright Fitchburg Art Museum NonVoting

Board Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 9
Hispanic/Latino: 0
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 3
Male: 6
Not Specified 0

Board Information

Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 2
Board Meeting Attendance % --
Written Board Selection Criteria Under Development
Written Conflict Of Interest Policy Yes
Percentage of Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage of In-Kind Contributions 100%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No

Standing Committees

  • Executive
  • Finance
  • Nominating

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Foundation Comments

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Financials


Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2017 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2016 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Fiscal Year Oct 01, 2018 to Sept 30, 2019
Projected Income $375,000.00
Projected Expense $375,000.00
Form 990s

2017 Form 990

2016 Form 990

2015 Form 990

2014 Form 990

2013 Form 990

2012 Form 990

2011 Form 990

2010 Form 990

2009 Form 990

2008 Form 990

Audit Documents

2017 Financial Review

2016 Financial Review

2015 Financial Review

IRS Letter of Exemption

IRS Letter of Determination

Prior Three Years Total Revenue and Expense Totals

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Total Revenue $267,146 $284,280 $325,247
Total Expenses $256,480 $291,868 $284,776

Prior Three Years Revenue Sources

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
-- -- --
Government Contributions $245,213 $264,787 $271,444
    Federal -- -- --
    State -- -- --
    Local -- -- --
    Unspecified $245,213 $264,787 $271,444
Individual Contributions $15,911 $14,248 $50,459
Indirect Public Support -- -- --
Earned Revenue -- -- --
Investment Income, Net of Losses $3,010 $2,273 $306
Membership Dues $3,012 $2,972 $3,038
Special Events -- -- --
Revenue In-Kind -- -- --
Other -- -- --

Prior Three Years Expense Allocations

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Program Expense $219,750 $240,906 $190,079
Administration Expense $36,730 $50,962 $94,697
Fundraising Expense -- -- --
Payments to Affiliates -- -- --
Total Revenue/Total Expenses 1.04 0.97 1.14
Program Expense/Total Expenses 86% 83% 67%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue 0% 0% 0%

Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Total Assets $423,610 $442,720 $420,289
Current Assets $421,573 $439,305 $419,864
Long-Term Liabilities -- -- --
Current Liabilities $12,499 $42,275 $12,256
Total Net Assets $411,111 $400,445 $408,033

Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
1st (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
2nd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
3rd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --

Financial Planning

Endowment Value --
Spending Policy --
Percentage(If selected) --
Credit Line No
Reserve Fund No
How many months does reserve cover? --

Capital Campaign

Are you currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Purpose --
Campaign Goal --
Capital Campaign Dates -
Capital Campaign Raised-to-Date Amount --
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? --

Short Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities 33.73 10.39 34.26

Long Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2017 2016 2015
Long-term Liabilities/Total Assets 0% 0% 0%

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

As a National Heritage Area, Freedom's Way works in partnership with the National Park Service who provides us with $300,000 a year in support.  This must be matched with either cash or in-kind goods and services on a reimbursable basis.
 
As a result, when we provide grants, stipends and programmatic services to partner organizations they in turn provide us with volunteer in-kind resources which typically average $300,000 in value.    

Foundation Comments

Financial summary data in the charts and graphs above are per the organization's IRS Form 990s. Contributions from foundations and corporations are listed under individuals when the breakout was not available.

Impact

The Impact tab is a section on the Giving Common added in October 2013; as such the majority of nonprofits have not yet had the chance to complete this voluntary section. The purpose of the Impact section is to ask five deceptively simple questions that require reflection and promote communication about what really matters – results. The goal is to encourage strategic thinking about how a nonprofit will achieve its goals. The following Impact questions are being completed by nonprofits slowly, thoughtfully and at the right time for their respective organizations to ensure the most accurate information possible.


1. What is your organization aiming to accomplish?

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2. What are your strategies for making this happen?

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3. What are your organization’s capabilities for doing this?

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4. How will your organization know if you are making progress?

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5. What have and haven’t you accomplished so far?

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