Community Development Innovation Review

August 2009
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Exploring the Continuum of Social and Financial Returns: When Does a Nonprofit Become a Social Enterprise?

Author(s):

Goodwill Industries and the YMCA have something in common: by most definitions they each would be considered a “social enterprise,” a relatively new and increasingly popular term in the United States. Yet both these nonprofit organizations have a history dating back more than 100 years. For Goodwill Industries of San Francisco, which serves three counties in the San Francisco Bay Area, a whopping 89 percent of its $28 million revenue for fiscal year ending June 2008 came from its business enterprises, not from government grants or foundations. By any standard, this is an enviable nonprofit revenue stream. Goodwill provides training, life coaching and jobs for those who possess a track record considered too risky for the private and public sector employment.

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Other articles in this issue

Mission Insurance: How to Structure a Social Enterprise So Its Social and Environmental Goals Survive into the Future

Using High-Transparency Banks to Reconnect Money and Meaning

Impact Investing: Harnessing Capital Markets to Solve Problems at Scale

Increasing Access to Capital: Could Better Measurement of Social and Environmental Outcomes Entice More Institutional Investment Capital into Underserved Communities?

NCIF Social Performance Metrics: Increasing the Flow of Investments in Distressed Neighborhoods through Community Development Banking Institutions

Reject the Reset!

Rethink Charity

Local Stock Exchanges and National Stimulus

At the Crossroads Where Economic Development, Job Creation and Workforce Development Intersect

Value

Could “Small Is Beautiful” Replace “Too Big to Fail?”