Nonprofit Effectiveness

Supporting and promoting effective, inclusive and sustainable nonprofits in Greater Boston

Landscape Scan for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Boston Foundation requests an experienced consultant to conduct a landscape scan of local consultants and programs that support organizational diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts within Greater Boston nonprofits.

Download the RFP for details


Leadership and Talent

Nonprofit leaders are the primary drivers of change in the organizations and communities they serve. We seek to support, develop and recognize the nonprofit sector’s leaders and to build the sector’s leadership pipeline.

We invest in programs that prepare and train leaders throughout their careers, including the Institute for Nonprofit Practice, which educates, supports and connects the next generation of nonprofit leaders, with an emphasis on leaders of color. Since 2007, the Institute for Nonprofit Practice has worked to equip hundreds of Massachusetts nonprofit leaders with the skills, confidence and resources they need to make their organizations effective and sustainable.

Opportunity in Change cover Opportunity in Change

Greater Boston nonprofits stand at a historic inflection point given the unprecedented volume of leadership transition within and outside the sector. This joint report by TSNE Missionworks and the Boston Foundation examines key sector-wide trends and the opportunities to strengthen nonprofits and their leaders as a result of these transitions.

We recognize outstanding nonprofit organizations demonstrating courageous and effective leadership with unrestricted one-time Out of the Blue grants. Learn about this year’s awardee and see a list of previous years’ winners.

Jennifer Aronson

Contact Associate Vice President for Programs Jennifer Aronson to learn more about this work.

Organizational Capacity

We help bolster the operational effectiveness of individual nonprofits by providing support to strengthen core organizational capacities including planning, governance, finance and evaluation; and by supporting the sector’s capacity for collective action. 

We recognize that the type of change we seek is broad and complex, and that achieving it will require coordinated, collective action. The Boston Foundation helps build the sector’s capacity for collective advocacy and action through a leadership investment in the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network.

More than 200 Greater Boston nonprofits received free access to Catchafire’s online platform, which allows nonprofits to locate and engage skills-based volunteers on a variety of capacity-building projects that advance their organizational health and effectiveness. 

Catchafire Visit Catchafire


We promote and facilitate strategic, data-driven philanthropy by supporting nonprofits to tell their stories and receive donations via the Giving Common. The Giving Common is an open online database with more than 1,100 nonprofit profiles connecting donors, funders and other stakeholders to detailed, robust information about nonprofit organizations working across Massachusetts. 

We send a quarterly e-newsletter with nonprofit news, free workshop sign-ups and listings of grant opportunities of all kinds. Interested?


“The Giving Common is a great resource for our group and for the nonprofit community in general. We can both cross reference data when we are looking for specific organizations, and can also conduct immediate analysis on those organizations.”

- NE 500/501 Circle

“We really appreciate the depth of information the Giving Common provides funders and those interested in knowing our organization better, and the thoughtfulness with which our data was collected and presented. It is a huge resource savings for us, without which, updating GuideStar to be as complete as Giving Common, would not have been a realistic undertaking in the short term.”