How We Approach Overhead

March 24, 2022

Dear Valued Supporter,

While we deliver life-saving aid to millions of people crippled by crisis, HCI is committed to sustainable development. This commitment allows us to maximize the impact of your donations by taking a holistic approach to development rooted in empowering the communities we work in.

The communities we serve know their problems intimately. Human Concern International is there to ensure that community members and leaders have the resources required to implement a sustainable solution.

In order to implement these solutions, we spend not only on the direct programs we implement but in a range of other areas. We invest in training, planning, evaluation, and in our internal systems— as well as in fundraising efforts that enable us to both sustain the organization and grow it so that we can implement more programs and help more people in the years to come. These latter costs are commonly referred to as overhead costs.

The percentage we will spend on overhead will vary each year. It depends on a number of factors including where we are in our organizational growth cycle, the number of programs finalized within that fiscal year, and the amount invested in infrastructure. We are happy to announce that HCI USA currently has 0% overhead. This is because HCI in Canada has provided seed funding to get us started in the US. This means all our non-program costs such as salaries and fundraising costs are covered by this seed funding, meaning that 100% of all funds raised in the US will go towards our programs. 

However, contrary to common opinion, the amount of money a charity spends on overhead is a poor measure of its performance. Spending on overhead is in fact a good thing and we will in years to come spend some of your donation on overhead. You don’t have to take our word for it. Read the letter below from America’s leading sources of information on charities to discover what they are saying about overhead costs. You may be surprised to read their conclusion that many charities should spend more, not less, on overhead.

For more on this topic, you can read this article below written by Oussama Mezoui, a nonprofit Management Consultant.  

Ramadan is here: What you need to know about nonprofit overhead costs!

We hope you will choose to support our important work.