As federal funding for nonprofit agencies has become increasingly uncertain, RSVP projects, which operate under the aegis of the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), are placing heightened emphasis on uniform reporting standards.
These National Performance Measures (NPM’s) are designed to give legislators, when considering federal funding, an accurate idea RSVP projects’ impact on the communities they serve, regardless of their geographic location.
NPM’s are set by CNCS, as are the range of projects that they measure. All RSVP project work plans have outputs which track unduplicated recipients of services delivered by RSVP volunteers.
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Selected projects also report outcomes that have become an area of heightened attention and are often derived from surveys and other metrics that gauge relative client satisfaction with services provided by RSVP volunteers. Currently, 107 of 230 RSVP-Racine volunteers serve in projects with definable outcomes.
The three outcome-based projects that mobilize RSVP-Racine volunteers to promote senior quality of life in Racine County are in the Healthy Futures Primary Focus category (Aging in Place): Meals on Wheels, Senior Companion Program Inc. and the Volunteer Center’s MyRIDE senior transportation project.
At the midpoint of RSVP-Racine’s current grant cycle, RSVP volunteers have served 488 Meals on Wheels recipients, 38 Senior Companion partners, 124 MyRIDE riders and 883 AARP clients.
The preponderance of surveys gauging outcomes returned from recipients of services delivered by RSVP volunteers suggest a high degree of satisfaction with food delivery, companionship and senior transportation projects.
In 2019, AARP’s Tax-Aide project became a fourth outcome project when it was elevated to the Economic Opportunity Focus Area (Financial Literacy), with RSVP volunteers preparing income-tax returns for Racine County residents. In 2019, outcomes measured over $786,000 in federal and state tax refunds returned to over 800 clients served from two Tax-Aide venues.