Financially Robust Charities: What are financial reserves, why you need them, and how much you need

Dr Craig Furneaux presents at the CFE Forum…


Non-profit organisations are expected to apply most, if not all, of their income towards their charitable purpose – as the provision of a social or environmental benefit is a condition of being granted tax exempt status. As non-profit organisations have no shareholders, all surplus is meant to be applied to achieving organisational mission. How then, can a charitable organisation maintain financial stewardship, plan for organisational growth, prepare for exogenous shocks (such as COVID), and manage issues like zombie philanthropy? In short, charities need to build financial robustness. This seminar will explore what the multiple types of reserves are, why they are needed, and how your organisation can develop a reserves policy. The paper builds on longitudinal analysis of financial data on charities from the ACNC

About Craig:

Dr Craig Furneaux is a Senior Lecturer at the Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies and is the Subject Area Coordinator for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies, Queensland University of Technology in Australia.

Craig has over 30 years’ experience leading innovation in, and researching with, nonprofit organisations.

Craig research focus on the resources (including various types of capital); the routines and capabilities; and results (social impact) of for nonprofits and social enterprises. He is also interested in faith based charities in civil society. His e-prints are available here:,_Craig.html

He currently serves as Area Editor, for Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, which is the top journal in the nonprofit sector.


To register, please email: 


Location: GP-B114
Start Date: 29/09/2021 [add to calendar]
Start Time: 12 noon
End Date: 29/09/2021
End Time: 1 PM
RSVP By: Wednesday 29th of September 2021
Organiser: The Centre for Future Enterprise
Enquiries: Anisa Hobaya -