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Full Cost Project Two-Day Workshop: Asking For and Funding Full Costs

Thursday, October 12, 2017 - 9:00am to Friday, October 13, 2017 - 5:00pm PDT
Google Community Space
188 The Embarcadero, San Francisco, CA 94105
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Full Cost funding is a little like learning a new language—one both funders and nonprofits can use to communicate more clearly about ideas, needs, and opportunities that move us all closer to our goals. The good news is that it’s okay if you’re not yet ‘fluent’ in Full Cost funding!

You don’t need to be an expert or implement a whole new system to try out a new practice. Even a small shift in organizational culture or a tweak to ‘business as usual’—like building a Full Cost budget, or understanding the role program grants play in Full Cost funding—can go a long way toward strengthening funder-grantee relationships and boosting your impact.

Join us for a two-day workshop led by Nonprofit Finance Fund to explore some of the Full Cost tips and strategies that can work for you. And because opportunities for peer learning and open dialogue outside the context of a specific grant are all too rare, this workshop is geared toward both nonprofit and funder participants.

Our hands-on training provides a unique space for leaders and staff on both sides of the funding equation to break down barriers and learn together. Over the course of the workshop, participants will follow a case study organization and learn to analyze financial statements with a Full Cost mind-set. Through interactive activities, funder and nonprofit staff will work together to arrive at a Full Cost assessment for the case study.

To learn more about other programs in Phase 2 of the Full Cost Project click here

Who Should Attend?


  • Those who implement strategy and engage in grantmaking – structuring grant awards, conducting site visits, and communicating with organizations to understand their needs – or any major due diligence activities.


  • Those who direct and implement strategy at a nonprofit, set budget goals, and determine asks in grantmaking requests.
    • Note: Content will be most relevant to organizations who are audited annually, or have a budget of $750,000+.
  • Two-to-three members of your organization (but not more than three) should attend so you are more likely to succeed should you try to implement Full Cost practices. If your organization has fewer than three members and/or is volunteer-based, please select the appropriate individual(s) to attend.

PLEASE NOTE: We are asking that you send at least two but not more than three people from your organization to this training (both funders and nonprofits). If you are intending to implement any aspect of a full cost approach after completing the training, it is important that you have some internal support as you go about this work. Having someone from your institution in the training will help ensure that you are not alone in these efforts. We do recognize that some organizations may not be able to send two-to-three people for the training. To make an exception to this request, you should have substantial decision-making authority in your organization that you can move things forward on your own. If you are in this situation, please contact Kate Seely at of 415-872-1021 to discuss registration. 


If you are a funder interested in attending this workshop, please register by clicking "Register Now" in the right sidebar. Please note that this workshop is available for NCG members only.

Nonprofits can register by contacting Krystle Chipman at  

We are requesting that at least two and no more than three colleagues attend from a funding instution to ensure that this content can be applied once returning to your workplace. Please see above for exceptions to this rule. 

Learn More

To learn more about Phase 2 of the Full Cost Project read the announcement here


Claire Knowlton, Director, Advisory Services, Nonprofit Finance Fund

Claire leads NFF’s work on full costs with nonprofits, funders, and other partners (read more in, "Why Funding Overhead Is Not the Real Issue: The Case to Cover Full Costs") She also leads several major initiatives, including a six-year effort that combines anti-racism, capacity building, and funding to develop new nonprofit arts models. Prior to joining NFF, Claire led a community-based art center in Los Angeles from financial distress to being a model of excellence in programming and organizational management. She also has worked as an auditor and tax-preparer for nonprofits. Claire earned a Bachelor of Arts from University of the Pacific with a double major in economics and religious studies. She is co-founder of The Life You Can Save, a nonprofit committed to ending extreme poverty by directing philanthropic dollars to effective solutions.

Renee PateyDirector, Advisory ServicesNonprofit Finance Fund

Renee oversees the full range of NFF’s Consulting services, leading business development, service enhancement, and client delivery through new tools and resources. She plays a key role in NFF’s strategy and activities in California and the Pacific Northwest, working with a variety of nonprofit and philanthropic partners with a special focus on strategic business-model adaptation and capitalization planning. Prior to joining NFF, Renee served as a program manager with The Sustainability Institute, an environmental nonprofit headquartered in Charleston, SC, where she led community-based projects for environmental stewardship in urban development. Renee holds a Bachelor of Arts in geography from the University of Georgia and a master’s degree in political science from Colorado State University.

Trella WalkerManager, Advisory ServicesNonprofit Finance Fund

Trella Walker is a Senior Associate in Advisory Services with NFF in the Los Angeles office. Trella assists clients by providing data driven analysis that frames the information in a comprehensive, clear manner. Prior to joining NFF, Trella worked in the nonprofit sector in a variety of fields, including but not limited to arts and entertainment, youth, education, Veteran affairs, and law; and has had the pleasure of working for impact driven organizations such as Health Net, Debbie Allen Dance Academy, and United States Veterans Initiative.  She holds a BA in English and secondary education as well as a Juris Doctor degree.Trella provides nonprofits with data-driven analysis that frames NFF’s Consulting guidance in a comprehensive, clear manner. Prior to joining NFF, she worked in nonprofits across a variety of fields, including arts and entertainment, youth, education, healthcare, veteran affairs, and law. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and secondary education as well as a Juris Doctor degree.