The Arc Maryland is proud to announce receiving the Standards for Excellence Institute’s Seal of Excellence for successfully completing its rigorous accreditation program. The Arc Maryland voluntarily opened itself up to analysis by a “jury of its peers.”
The peer review team examined The Arc Maryland for compliance with the Standards for Excellence®: An Ethics and Accountability Code for the Nonprofit Sector, in areas including: Mission, Strategy and Evaluation; Leadership: Board, Staff, and Volunteers; Legal Compliance and Ethics; Finance and Operations; Resource Development; and Public Awareness, Engagement, and Advocacy.
The Standards for Excellence Institute evaluates fundamental values such as honesty, integrity, fairness, respect, trust, responsibility, and accountability, all of which are inherently important in the nonprofit world. The Arc Maryland’s programs and services, management, fundraising and financial practices were subjected to in-depth examination prior to earning accreditation.
“Earning this accreditation is critical to our mission at The Arc Maryland of creating a world where children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities have and enjoy equal rights and opportunities. Having this seal of approval when applying for grants and seeking financial support from our donors should help bolster the funds needed to accomplish our goals and engage public support,” said Cristine Marchand, executive director of The Arc Maryland.
The Standards for Excellence Institute is committed to raising the level of principled and responsible practices within the nonprofit sector. The Institute offers a model for organizations to implement in their operating plans so they can gain a deeper understanding of their effectiveness, improve their decision- making and minimize risks. Nonprofits that adhere to the principles and practices of strong nonprofit management and governance can become formally accredited under the Standards for Excellence® program.
A recent study of 102 nonprofit organizations that have received the Standards for Excellence® accreditation compared with peer organizations of similar size and industry examined the impact of becoming accredited. Significant findings found that the process is associated with an increase in direct public support.
Researchers found that nonprofit organizations’ stakeholders will react positively to organizations earning the accreditation by allocating more resources to the nonprofit.
About the Standards for Excellence Institute
The Standards for Excellence originated as a special initiative of Maryland Nonprofits in 1998 and has since expanded into a national program to help nonprofit organizations achieve the highest benchmarks of ethics and accountability in nonprofit governance, management and operations. The program has been formally adopted by 10 state, regional and national affiliate organizations, and is supported by nearly 80 licensed consultants and over 100 volunteers with professional experience in nonprofit governance and administration. Since its inception, the program has accredited or recognized over 200 individual nonprofit organizations that completed a rigorous application and review process to demonstrate adherence to the Standards for Excellence: An Ethics and Accountability Code for the Nonprofit Sector. www.standardsforexcellenceinstitute.org.