What is Fiscal Sponsorship?
Fiscal sponsorship is a contractual relationship that allows a person or organization that is not tax-exempt to engage in charitable activities under the nonprofit status and tax-exemption of their sponsor.
Some reasons to consider fiscal sponsorship for your project include:
Increased credibility through alignment with an established nonprofit
The short-term nature of the initiative
Improved access to funding sources
Low-cost fiscal and other administrative services.
With the project sponsor assuming most of the administrative and fiscal responsibilities, project leaders can focus more of their attention on the project itself.
Fiscal sponsors typically assess an administrative fee based on a percentage of a project’s revenues or expenses. This fee varies based on the services provided and the amount and complexity of the grant funds administered.
Fiscal Sponsorship with Oregon Wildlife Foundation
OWF will serve as a fiscal sponsor for projects that are consistent with our mission. As your sponsor, we can offer your project a suite of services to support successful implementation including:
Tax exemption for your individual donors
Capacity to receive and manage foundation and government grants
Financial services – eligibility for tax-deductible donations & grants, acknowledgement of donations over $50, stock and online donation processing capability, financial statements & record-keeping, weekly check and deposit processing, tax remittance & filings, and an annual independent audit
Project & Grants Management Services – problem-solving consultation, assistance in applying for grants, tracking for grant reporting, government grants billing, insurance including general liability, property, & umbrella, certificates of insurance
Meeting space and facilitation services
Communications – presence on our website, social media, e-newsletter, and print materials
Direct financial support to projects deemed a priority by our Board of Directors
Here are the types of fiscal sponsor arrangements that we currently support:
Direct Project Sponsorship: a person or an organization brings a project to the Foundation and we implement it. Legally the project is no different from any other activity that OWF sponsors directly.
Independent Contractor Project: The project belongs to the Foundation but is implemented by an independent contractor. Similar to Direct Project Sponsorship, but the project activities are legally performed by someone else.
Pre-approved Grant Relationship: a person or an organization, by agreement, applies to the Foundation for one or a series of grants to support a sponsored project and the Foundation agrees to receive, manage, and grant funds to that project. Under this arrangement, the sponsored project isn’t part of OWF but a separate entity that is responsible for managing its own reporting and liabilities.
Our fiscal administration fee is 10% of expenses assessed monthly. This fee will vary based on the amount of funding being managed, the source of those funds, and the reporting requirements of the funder.
If you understand our fiscal sponsorship program and think that you want to work with us, the next step is to determine if your proposed project fits with our mission and priorities.
The projects that we like to support generally fall into one of the following categories:
fish and/or wildlife habitat restoration
public access preservation, restoration, or improvement
natural resource or outdoor education
invasive species removal or control
studies that support improved fish/wildlife management
The Foundation does not support the following types of projects:
Improvement of natural resources for private gain
Acquisition of land
Required mitigation or toxic cleanups
Lobbying efforts of any kind
Captive breeding programs, or
Predator control activities
Legal Relationship Understanding
When OWF accepts a fiscal sponsor relationship with a person or organization, it is accepting legal and financial responsibility for the ensuing project. Because the project falls under the auspices of the Foundation, it is able to receive charitable donations and grants that are typically only available to tax-exempt organizations.
A project under sponsorship is responsible for the following:
regular communication with Foundation staff
understanding and adhering to all applicable laws and IRS regulations
meeting funder obligations and abiding any restrictions imposed on funding
understanding and adhering to the Foundation’s fiscal policies and procedures
project activities that contribute to or relate directly to the Foundation’s mission
management of the day-to-day operations of the project
fundraising to sustain the project
careful financial management
Take this short quiz to determine if your Project is eligible for sponsorship by Oregon Wildlife Foundation. If your answer to the following questions is “yes” then your Project is a match and eligible for sponsorship by the Foundation:
1. My project is consistent with the mission of OWF
2. My project fits within the categories of projects that OWF supports
3. I understand and accept the legal relationship between OWF and the project
4. I understand and accept the responsibilities of being a sponsored project
Does your proposed project seem to be a fit with the mission and priorities of OWF? If so, please contact the Foundation’s Executive Director to discuss and mutually reach a final determination.
The responsibilities and obligations of all parties are outlined in a Fiscal Sponsorship Agreement. An example of our agreement for a Pre-Approved Grant Relationship may be viewed by clicking here.
Q&A please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.