Resources for Nonprofits

Program Overview | Fiscal and Compliance Monitoring | Resources for Nonprofits

The Program provides an array of opportunities and resources to enhance nonprofit contractor's capacity to deliver services, to have strong, sustainable fiscal operations and to support coordination around the process of doing business with the City.

The Capacity Building Program

Each year, the Program coordinates training for nonprofits and City staff and individualized coaching for nonprofits. These activities support City staff in their monitoring roles and nonprofits to create and maintain strong financial management practices. Services are targeted to nonprofits in contract with the City and the City staff that conduct contract management and monitoring activities with nonprofits.

  • Workshops - Each year the Program offers a series of workshops that focus on financial management and operations, such as developing an agency-wide budget, cost allocation procedures, and board development and fundraising. Training sessions are open to all nonprofit contractors participating in the Monitoring Program.
  • Individualized Coaching - The Controller's Office contracts with consultants, who have nonprofit finance and governance expertise, to provide free tailored support to agencies to address specific needs, particularly to strengthen practices identified during the Monitoring process.

There are several ways to inquire about coaching for your agency or to learn when trainings occur:

  • Nonprofits may contact their funding departments to get more information about how to receive coaching.
  • Nonprofits may request coaching by downloading and submitting this form.
  • Request to receive notifications from the Nonprofit Monitoring Program by clicking here.

Slides are available for the recent nonprofit training series, Short, Mid, & Long-Term Planning during COVID:

  • Financial Management 101 - Cash Indicators for Short-Term Planning (slides)
  • Financial Management 201 - Budgeting and Pivoting for Mid-Term Planning (slides)
  • Financial Management 301 - Stabilizing Assets for Long-Term Planning (slides)
  • Compliance During COVID feat. Audit Partner Cecilia Angat, Squar Milner LLP (slides)

The Capacity Building Program Plan and Procedures describes the capacity building services of the Nonprofit Monitoring Program.

Nonprofit Monitoring Related Tools

A Guide for Nonprofits Receiving Fiscal and Compliance Monitoring
The Controller's Office has developed a guide for nonprofits to provide a better understanding on upcoming Expanded Monitoring and Core Monitoring. The document covers the purpose of the Monitoring Program, how the program supports nonprofits, and what to  expect at an Expanded Monitoring /Core Monitoring including what documents to have ready.

Financial Management Tools
Sound financial management practices are a key indicator if a nonprofit agency's overall health and stability. The following links provide the City and County of San Francisco (CCSF) guidelines for financial management of nonprofit organizations, as well as tools nonprofits can use to strengthen internal controls and other fiscal practices.

Budget and Cost Allocation
The City requires that nonprofits receiving public funds clearly show how they allocate indirect and shared costs among their various programs. Cost allocation procedures can be complex, particularly for larger organizations with multiple programs and funding streams. The resources below consist of guidelines and training presentations to clarify the standards for this fiscal practice.

Board Governance
The Board of Directors is legally and financially responsible for an agency. It's a critical role, and nonprofits must ensure that they have the right people in the job, and that those individuals fully understand and can carry out their role. The attached materials help board members fulfill their important governance duties.

Sample Policies

The Citywide Nonprofit Monitoring and Capacity Building Program requires as part of its annual monitoring process that nonprofits demonstrate they have and follow certain organizational policies that help organizations maintain work environments that are safe and effective, and work processes that are consistent, effective, and ethical. These policies are listed in the Standard Monitoring Form under the standards they help uphold. See below some sample policies your organization may use when establishing your own policies. If you choose to use any of these sample policies, be sure to update them as needed to fit your organization’s unique circumstances.

Emergency Preparedness

San Francisco Sunshine Ordinance Task Force FAQs
The San Francisco Sunshine Ordinance is an ordinance to ensure easier access to public records and to strengthen the open meeting laws. Nonprofits that receive $250,000 or more in City funds must comply with what is called the Non-Profit Public Access Ordinance. The San Francisco Sunshine Ordinance Task Force hosts a website that answers the most frequently asked questions regarding compliance with the Ordinance.

Sample Policy Regarding Public Access (Word): Nonprofits monitored through the Citywide Monitoring Program must have a written policy documenting how the agency complies with certain elements of San Francisco Administrative Code 12L. The document provides a template nonprofits can use to get started.

San Francisco Mayor's Office on Disability Compliance Resources
The City's Mayor's Office on Disability (MOD) provides several resources that may be helpful to nonprofits in complying with the terms of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The mission of the MOD is to ensure that every program, service, benefit, activity and facility operated or funded by the City of San Francisco is fully accessible to, and useable by, people with disabilities.

Resources for Doing Business with the City

Qualify to Do Business with CCSF
The City and County of San Francisco requires all contractors doing business with any City department to meet certain requirements, and to file specific forms to become eligible. This process can be confusing for many vendors and grantees. The Office of Contract Administration has created a webpage to walk potential City vendors through the steps of qualifying for City contracts.

Materials From Southeast Nonprofit Resource Fair 2014:
The Fair was a multi-City Department collaborative event that included 18 Department-hosted resource tables, four concurrent workshops on various City funding-related topics, and opportunities for networking. The following materials and presentation handouts were made available to attendees and can be downloaded below.


Understanding the OMB Super-Circular
Nonprofits that receive federal grant funding must comply with certain federal requirements, some of which have changed with the new Uniform Guidance. Below are some resources about these changes.

Whistleblower Program
The City's Whistleblower Program receives, investigates or refers, and tracks complaints about employee misconduct, the quality and delivery of government services, wasteful and inefficient City government practices, misuse of City government funds and resources, and other improper activities by City government vendors and contractors. Whistleblower Program (PDF)

External Resources
  • Community Vision (formerly Northern California Community Loan Fund): Beginning in FY15-16, Community Vision is a Technical Assistance provider for the Controller's Office, with expertise in nonprofit lending and financial management. Community Vision hosts Spaces for Good that contains several real estate and financial management resources for nonprofits.

  • BDO FMA: Beginning in FY15-16, FMA is a Technical Assistance provider for the Controller's Office, with expertise in training and fiscal management. FMA developed with the Wallace Foundation. The website features an array of free tools, how-tos and guides for anyone involved in nonprofits' financial planning, monitoring, operations or oversight.

  • CompassPoint Nonprofit Services has many resources for nonprofits. Visit their site to learn about upcoming trainings in budgeting, nonprofit management, board development and more.