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9 of the Best Nonprofit Annual Reports From 2023

9 of the Best Nonprofit Annual Reports From 2023


Crafting a compelling annual report is essential for effectively communicating impact, engaging stakeholders and supporters, and fostering trust. As we explore 9 standout nonprofit annual reports from 2023, you will learn innovative ways and best practices that can inspire your own reporting efforts! From the American Red Cross to Wildlife Conservation Society to Girls Inc., these organizations demonstrate how to craft a report that will captivate, inform, and inspire your audience.



1. The American Red Cross


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Photo courtesy of the American Red Cross


The Red Cross provides humanitarian aid, such as disaster relief and healthcare services, for veterans and other vulnerable communities worldwide. In their 2023 annual report, they highlight their impact on disaster response, biomedical services, military assistance, and many more in an organized and clear-cut format. At the beginning of each section, they provide a summary with relevant key statistics, such as the number of meals provided to families, or the number of lifeguards trained through their services.


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Photo courtesy of the American Red Cross

Including a concise summary before each section can offer readers a quick overview before they delve into the detailed contents, making your annual report much easier to digest at a short glance. By doing this, it can not only make it easier for your current audience to navigate the report’s contents, but also convey powerful outcomes to potential stakeholders and donors effectively. When drafting your report, you may want to consider organizing it by section and communicating big accomplishments at the beginning of each section. The Red Cross brilliantly designs their annual report to be a seamless extension of their brand and identity. Through on-brand color usage, graphics, and images, a reader is fully immersed into this organization's core of who they are. Make sure your annual report not only communicates your mission, but also powerfully communicates your brand's identity and voice. 



2. Philanthropy Together


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Photo courtesy of Philanthropy Together


Philanthropy Together is a global initiative that empowers and supports individuals, families, and organizations to maximize their impact on issues that matter most to them via collective giving and giving circles. Their commitment to amplify diverse voices and community philanthropy is beautifully presented in their 2023 annual report. Built seamlessly into their website, their annual report is completely digital and interactive. As you scroll through the report, you’ll find moving graphics and clickable elements, such as links to YouTube videos, news articles, and other landing pages on their website, providing a fun and engaging reading experience for viewers while also giving readers the opportunity to explore additional materials and website pages. Apart from captivating your audience, there are other upsides to a digital annual report, such as the ability to update the report in real-time and track user engagement metrics like page views and click rates.



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Photo courtesy of Philanthropy Together


Another strong feature of this report is its emphasis on the organization’s successful events and marketing efforts, such as Sara Loemlin's -founder & CEO of Philanthropy Together- TED Talk, "Your Invitation to Disrupt Philanthropy." Showcasing your PR highlights can further reinforce your mission's messaging and provide a window into how you've successfully amplified your cause for all to see. If your nonprofit is focused on engaging stakeholders and increasing participation, you may want to look towards Philanthropy Together’s engaging and mission-centric annual report for some inspiration!





3. Wildlife Conservation Society

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Photo courtesy of Wildlife Conservation Society


The Wildlife Conservation Society works to protect and conserve wildlife and their habitats through scientific research, field projects, education, and advocacy. What particularly stands out in their 2023 annual report is their emphasis on using beautiful photographs and other visuals to effectively convey their impact to readers. Throughout the report, you’ll find whole pages filled with high-quality photos of natural landscapes and wildlife, which can evoke strong emotions, inspire awe, and reinforce their impact to conserve nature more effectively than text alone.


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Photo courtesy of Wildlife Conservation Society


This report also contains a timeline of the organization’s history and achievements, chronicling their work with on the-ground field conservation programs, specifically their flagship Bronx Zoo, now celebrating 125 years. This not only shows their impact in 2023, but also their major achievements dating back to 1899. Whether your organization was founded decades ago or has only just started, including visuals and past achievements can be a great way to emphasize how far your organization has come!





4. American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)

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Photo courtesy of American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)


The American Civil Liberties Union, also known as the ACLU, aims to defend and preserve individual civil rights and liberties of Americans through grassroots activism, lobbying, and public education efforts. In their 2023 annual report, the ACLU’s multifaceted work and impact is strongly underscored through their incorporation of individual testimonials and accomplishments by state. Organized by various social causes, such as voting rights, reproductive freedom, and LGBTQ equality.


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Photo courtesy of American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)


Each section in the report contains accounts of ACLU clients and activists discussing their personal experiences and advocacy efforts. By amplifying individual voices, it can help remind readers of the human stakes involved in the ACLU’s mission and reinforce their dedication to grassroots activism. In addition, each section of the report contains a subsection highlighting the ACLU’s impact by state, which shows how their impact is reached nationwide. When writing your annual report, consider incorporating testimonials to indicate satisfaction from your constituents or if your organization is recognized nationally, try including how you’ve made your impact by state.  




5. Good360

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Photo courtesy of Good360


Good360 helps distribute donated goods to other nonprofits, allowing them to support communities in need and advance their charitable missions. One of the most visually compelling pages in their annual report is the “2023 Impact: At-a-Glance” page, which reminds readers of Good360’s overall mission and provides key statistics, such as the number of total lives impacted and the top needed items from their network. An “at a glance” page can be an incredible addition to your annual report, as it not only offers you the opportunity to present impressive metrics, but also provide clarity and focus to your stakeholders on what matters most to them and what information you want to call out. You can also get quite creative with it— feel free to also include big achievements, financial highlights, graphs, and photographs. If your nonprofit report is broken into sections, a smart design choice would be to include an "at-a-glance" page prior to every section for easy reading and to set the stage for the reader to transition successfully into a new area. 


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Photo courtesy of Good360


Overall, an overview page in an annual report serves as a valuable tool for conveying key information, engaging stakeholders and supporters, and driving decision-making, ultimately enhancing the effectiveness and impact of your report.





6. Girls, Inc.

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Photo courtesy of Girls Inc.


Girls, Inc is the longest-running girls' leadership program that aids girls in reaching their full potential while advocating with and for them to end inequity and discrimination. Every annual report should contain a letter written by the founder or CEO of the organization communicating their vision, achievements, and gratitude— and Girls, Inc.’s 2023 annual report is a perfect example of what this should look like. Both the President’s and Board Chair’s letters in the report express gratitude directly to their supporters, fostering a sense of appreciation and recognition towards their readers. Including a personal thank you from leadership can not only deepen an organization’s connection to its community, but also reinforce their collective efforts to drive impactful change.


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Photo courtesy of Girls Inc.


Additionally, this report stands out because of its emphasis on the organization’s marketing and achievements, rather than just fundraising or financials. By including links to featured news articles and highlighting new initiatives, Girls, Inc. effectively shows stakeholders how their involvement has resulted in tangible impact. Communicating your gratitude to your supporters and spotlighting your organization’s successes can be a great way to demonstrate transparency and remind readers that they also play a large role towards your mission.





7. Planned Parenthood

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Photo courtesy of Planned Parenthood


Planned Parenthood provides reproductive health care, including contraception, STI testing and treatment, cancer screenings, and safe and legal abortion services, in addition to sex education and advocacy for reproductive rights. Their 2023 annual report is a striking example of how visuals can elevate your report and leave a lasting impression on your readers. Throughout the report, they incorporate an eye-catching color scheme of bright yellow, sky blue, and hot pink, capturing the reader’s attention from the get-go. They utilize these vibrant colors to enhance and emphasize the most important statistics and facts in this report.


Report from Planned Parenthood titled, "Relentless in the Fight".

Photo courtesy of Planned Parenthood


In addition to their strong use of color, each page contains clear statistics, compelling narratives, and photographs of real-life volunteers and lobbying events, which seamlessly weave together to tell the organization’s story and impact. This approach to storytelling can not only inspire their audience, but also reinforces their commitment to pushing boundaries through advocacy and activism. Just like Planned Parenthood’s report, your nonprofit report can also be both informative and visually engaging by incorporating these elements.




8. The Salvation Army

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Photo courtesy of The Salvation Army


The Salvation Army provides a wide range of social services, such as food assistance, housing support, disaster relief, and addiction recovery with an overall mission to meet the needs of vulnerable communities. In their 2023 annual report, Salvation Army does a great job of communicating their financials in a comprehensive and detailed manner, breaking down key financial metrics like revenue, expenses, and overall assets. Despite being very comprehensive, they make this information accessible and clear to their readers.



The Salvation Army's 2022 Financial Summary.  Screenshot 2024-03-28 164310

Photo courtesy of The Salvation Army


For example, they use different colors in their graphs to represent how much each revenue stream and expense category take up their respective totals. Generally, the financial overview serves to provide clear insights as to how funds are allocated, and it can help readers gauge how well your organization is doing financially. A thorough financial overview isn’t merely about numbers but provides strategic insights to your stakeholders, as it can help them identify financial strengths and areas for improvement, allowing for smarter resource allocation in the next year.




9. Habitat for Humanity

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Photo courtesy of Habitat for Humanity


Habitat for Humanity aims to alleviate housing poverty through providing homeownership programs and home repair services to families and communities in need. Organizations like Habitat for Humanity often require significant support from companies, other nonprofits, and individuals to sustain their housing projects.


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Photos courtesy of Habitat for Humanity


While most annual reports break down their achievements by location, Habitat for Humanity’s 2023 annual report takes it a step further with an interactive digital map that moves across the different continents as users scroll down on the page. This map highlights important statistics for each continent such as new construction, repairs, and professional services to name a few. Utilizing a digital world map helps to further cement the incredible impact Habitat for Humanity has across the globe. This report finishes off with cleanly curated graphs, making it easy to digest key financial statistics and metrics. The key to a successful annual report is to not solely rely on the data, but to showcase it in an effective way through graphs, visuals, and layouts. Try utilizing these visual tools to communicate statistical information and paint a clearer picture of your organization's financials and impact. 



As we conclude our exploration of standout nonprofit annual reports from 2023, it’s clear that an effective annual report encompasses many things, including clear statistics, engaging and consistent design, strong storytelling, real-life impact stories, and appreciation towards supporters and readers. Each of the highlighted organizations above have taken smart and innovative approaches to convey their mission, impact, and goals. We hope that these examples provide inspiration as to how you can craft the best annual report for your nonprofit!





Check out our other nonprofit annual report recaps for inspiration: