Accounting Term: What Is a Statement of Activities?

statement of activities

A Statement of Activities shows whether an organization made a profit or a loss during a period of time. It is a financial snapshot that can be used to track the organization’s financial progress. While the goal of a nonprofit isn’t to turn a profit, if you don’t bring in more than you spend, you won’t be able to survive. And a little “profit” helps build your operating reserves to help you survive a slow-fundraising quarter or unexpected expenses. The expense section reports all cash that flows out of your organization, including pending expenses—those you know you’ve incurred but haven’t spent the money yet, such as payroll for hours worked the previous month. But a nonprofit calls the difference between revenue and expenses change in net assets.

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This statement can be incredibly helpful when nonprofits are analyzing their finances and trying to determine where those hard-earned fundraising dollars seem to disappear to. The revenues and expenses in this report are broken down by unrestricted funds and funds with restrictions placed on them by donors, using separate columns across the statement. Though it is possible to compress these rows down to just a few line items, it is customary to be more expansive in detailing revenues and expenses. The Statement Of Activities is similar to the Income Statement businesses issue. The Statement of Activities looks at the entire organization and reports on the revenues and expenses of the nonprofit during a specific reporting period.

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You can also show these expense amounts and percentages on your website. Your organization must also list expenses on your Statement of Activities report. You should split your expenses by programs, administrative, and fundraising costs.

The second step is to understand the components of a Statement of Activities. The first step in reading a Statement of Activities is to understand its purpose. But if you’re spending more than you bring in for several periods in a row, you’re headed for trouble.

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While your client’s balance sheet is a snapshot view of what its company is like at a certain date, a statement of activities summarizes what happened during a month, quarter, or full year. A statement of activities quantifies the revenues and expenses of a nonprofit entity for a reporting period. This is the nonprofit version of the income statement that is used to report the financial results of a for-profit business.

By understanding how to read and understand this key nonprofit financial report, you can better allocate your resources and improve your organization’s overall performance. Non-operating revenues and expenses are not directly related to the university’s primary operating mission but represent activities that indirectly support its mission and are critical components of its financial performance. A Statement of Activities will help nonprofits file Form 990 with the IRS and provide needed transparency to donors, foundations, and corporations. Websites like GuideStar will also use this report to share how your organization uses revenue.

Statement of Functional Expenses

Temporarily restricted profits might have a restriction on them for a given time period. Once that time period lapses or the purpose of the funds is fulfilled, those funds can be used for something else. This is no longer relevant, but it might be useful in looking at historical nonprofit statement of activities. Currently, it is more common for districts that provide OPEB to continue to do so on a “pay-as-you-go” basis. Therefore, in practice, GASB Statement 45 will have more widespread applicability to districts than GASB Statement 43. It should be noted, however, that any OPEB liability that a district may have will, in almost all situations, affect only the government-wide financial statements.

  • This guide teaches the basics of reading and understanding a nonprofit Statement of Activities.
  • The public art installation opens with an evening of reflection and performance at Glenn Memorial Church on Emory’s Atlanta campus.
  • England has undergone significant financial upheaval due to Brexit, and many citizens are concerned about the impact it could have on charities and their donations.
  • Sharing these 3 sections with donors provides transparency and helps them understand where their donation goes.

When a nonprofit shares more about its financial health, foundations and sponsors see that the nonprofit is financially viable and feel safer giving. A nonprofit example will have a heading, body, and bottom line. A multi-column format will be used to present the increases and decreases in net assets according to the intent of the donor with column headings for unrestricted, temporarily restricted, and permanently restricted.

Accounting Term: What Is a Statement of Activities?

We can help you modernize and optimize your accounting systems while also taking the time-sucking bookkeeping tasks off of your hands. And be the trusted financial partner you can turn to for answers to your questions and expert financial advice. The public art installation opens with an evening of reflection and performance at Glenn Memorial Church on Emory’s Atlanta campus. And will feature performances by the inaugural hip-hop ambassador to the U.S. Additionally, Atlanta’s own all-women contemporary African dance and drumming ensemble, Giwayen Mata, will perform with accompaniment by Mausiki Scales and Common Ground Collective. The Emory Praise House will also be open for tours on Friday, Oct. 20, and remain open through Homecoming Weekend from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

  • Meanwhile, unrestricted revenue can be allocated toward projects, operations, and other expenses as chosen by the nonprofit itself.
  • All types of fund inflows are added up in this section, including individual donor contributions, grant revenue, membership dues, investment income, and funds released from restrictions.
  • In that case the line should be clearly labeled to indicate that not all interest is reported here.
  • In addition, there must be an externally imposed requirement to separately account for the activity’s revenues, expenses, gains and losses, assets, and liabilities (GASB Statement 37, Paragraph 17).
  • Donations your nonprofit receives during events, campaigns, and other times throughout the year.
  • Expenses might include salaries, office supplies, utilities, and other costs for each program.

The statement of cash flow shows how cash moves in and out of a nonprofit. Board members and other leaders can use this statement for better insight into how much is available to pay expenses. Your net assets can be from the current and previous operating years and include anything that holds value. Financial statements also give donors a better understanding of how the organization is doing. Conversely, a statement of activities with natural classification would only list the expense types, such as salaries, utilities, office supplies, and others.