PROJECTThe Grounding Values Study: Exploring the Community Development Sector’s Challenges and Accomplishments to Shape Its Future

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    Understanding the Financial Health of Community-Based Development Organizations 

    Nonprofit community-based development organizations (CBDOs) work in low-income communities and communities of color. They implement development projects such as affordable housing and community facilities and provide programs and activities that meet community needs. CBDOs need financial resiliency and sustainability to ensure they can continue to serve their missions in their communities.

    To better understand the financial characteristics and health of the nonprofit CBDO sector today and over time, this research links CBDOs with the financial data they reported to the Internal Revenue Service to maintain their tax-exempt status. It examines sector funding flows, leverage, and liquidity by organizational size, geographic region, and real estate holdings through a summary report; technical paper; a series of national, regional, state, and metropolitan statistical area fact sheets; and a public dataset.

    Fact Sheets

    This project was corrected on September 30, 2022. Originally, we described our unit of analysis as 5,720 unique CBDOs filing taxes in 2018, but we actually analyzed the number of tax-filing records in 2018 filed by 5,603 unique CBDOs. Some CBDOs filed more than one tax statement in 2018 (e.g., for address updates, recent tax year amendments, or within-year amendments). Numbers throughout this project are based on the correct unit of analysis and have not changed. We keep the “organization” language throughout the products because it is easier to understand, but mentions of CBDOs in this study should be interpreted as CBDO tax filings in 2018. All publications under this project have been updated to reflect the correct unit of analysis. For detailed information, see the errata in the technical report at