When a nonprofit’s funding was threatened, BDO provided the essential support to keep their mission going.
“I’m only an accountant, but I have the opportunity to contribute to something greater than myself – and that’s a good feeling.”
Andrea Wilson has dedicated her career to helping others – first as a Peace Corps volunteer in Moldova from 1999 to 2001, then by working at a nonprofit for nearly 16 years. In 2014, Andrea joined BDO’s Nonprofit & Education team, where she helps some of the world’s largest – and most impactful – nonprofit organizations.
“Every nonprofit wants to maximize the impact they can make on the world,” Wilson explains. “But when it comes to the financial side of things – compliance, structure, etc. – many organizations need some help of their own.”
One of Andrea’s clients, a major, international nonprofit, spent years empowering some of the world’s most vulnerable communities. They implemented programs designed to help people achieve self-sufficiency in countries across Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, the Americas, and the Middle East.
“The organization came to us in January 2015, when their funding from the U.S. government was suspended,” said Wilson, Nonprofit & Education Advisory Services Partner who led the engagement. “Although suspension isn’t necessarily permanent – and can be overturned entirely – it’s a really big deal.”
BDO got to work immediately. The organization had lost their funding due to various resource allocation and control allegations. So BDO’s team of 29 professionals conducted a complete and thorough review, examining more than 3,000 transactions in a six-week period.
But the numbers were only part of the equation.
“In engagements like this, BDO goes beyond accounting,” Wilson explained. “We also helped the organization think through their overall strategy – to understand who the players were, as well as how and when to respond to the suspension.”
As part of the new strategy, BDO helped restructure the organization into four separate entities. By doing so, BDO helped the client have better control with its grants and contracts, making compliance a much more straightforward process.
And all the effort paid off. After seven months, the suspension was overturned, and the organization continues to receive governmental aid.
By helping nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations handle logistical, financial, and compliance-related issues, BDO is helping them continue to make a positive impact on the world.
“The nonprofits that BDO serves are doing extraordinary work,” Wilson said. “Everything from helping find a cure for AIDS, to providing support to refugees and increasing access to education for girls. They’re causes I believe in, and it’s a great feeling to contribute to their work.”
BDO Nonprofit & Education Practice
For 100 years, BDO has provided services to the nonprofit community. Through extensive experience working in this sector, BDO has developed a significant capability and fluency in the general and specific business issues that face these organizations.
With more than 2,800 clients in the nonprofit sector, BDO’s team of professionals offers the hands-on experience and technical skill to serve the distinctive needs of nonprofit clients – and help them fulfill their missions. The firm supplements their technical approach by analyzing and advising clients on the many elements of running a successful nonprofit organization.
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