Mission: We advance educational equity by building long-term partnerships with students, families, communities, and schools to create experiences outside of school that inspi ... (More)

Horizons National is a 501(c)(3) organization, with an IRS ruling year of 1997, and donations are tax-deductible.

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Contact Information

  http://www.horizonsnational.org

  120 Post Road West
Suite 202
Westport CT 06880 

  203-594-7040


You are viewing this organization's new Charity Navigator profile page. To view the legacy version, click here.

Star Rating System by Charity Navigator


Charity Navigator evaluates a nonprofit organization’s financial health including measures of stability, efficiency and sustainability. We also track accountability and transparency policies to ensure the good governance and integrity of the organization.




Exceptional

This charity's score is 93.68, earning it a 4-Star rating. Donors can "Give with Confidence" to this charity. 

This score is calculated from two sub-scores:

This score represents Form 990 data from 2019. More recent filing data is available, but it has not been factored into this score, due to COVID-19's effect on this organization.

View this organization’s historical ratings.

Rating update postponed due to COVID-19's impact on this organization. View Horizons National's response.


Back to Overall

Star Rated Report

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Program Expense

Program Expense Ratio

80.0%


The Program Expense Ratio is determined by Program Expenses divided by Total Expense (average of most recent three 990s).


This measure reflects the percent of its total expenses a charity spends on the programs and services it exists to deliver. Dividing a charity's average program expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Administrative Expenses

8.6%


As reported by charities on their IRS Form 990, this measure reflects what percent of its total budget a charity spends on overhead, administrative staff and associated costs, and organizational meetings. Dividing a charity's average administrative expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Fundraising Expenses

11.3%


This measure reflects what a charity spends to raise money. Fundraising expenses can include campaign printing, publicity, mailing, and staffing and costs incurred in soliciting donations, memberships, and grants. Dividing a charity's average fundraising expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Liabilities to Assets Ratio

1.6%


The Liabilities to Assets Ratio is determined by Total Liabilities divided by Total Assets (most recent 990).


Part of our goal in rating the financial performance of charities is to help donors assess the financial capacity and sustainability of a charity. As do organizations in other sectors, charities must be mindful of their management of total liabilites in relation to their total assets. This ratio is an indicator of an organization’s solvency and or long term sustainability. Dividing a charity's total liabilities by its total assets yields this percentage.


Source: IRS Form 990

Fundraising Efficiency

$0.10


The amount spent to raise $1 in charitable contributions. To calculate a charity's fundraising efficiency, we divide its average fundraising expenses by the average total contributions it receives. We calculate the charity's average expenses and average contributions over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Working Capital Ratio

0.97 years


Determines how long a charity could sustain its level of spending using its net available assets, or working capital, as reported on its most recently filed Form 990. We include in a charity's working capital unrestricted and temporarily restricted net assets, and exclude permanently restricted net assets. Dividing these net available assets in the most recent year by a charity's average total expenses, yields the working capital ratio. We calculate the charity's average total expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Program Expense Growth

18.06%


We compute the average annual growth of program expenses using the following formula: [(Yn/Y0)(1/n)]-1, where Y0 is a charity's program expenses in the first year of the interval analyzed, Yn is the charity's program expenses in the most recent year, and n is the interval of years passed between Y0 and Yn.


Source: IRS Form 990

Governance


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990 that the organization has these governance practices in place.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990

Governance:
Independent Voting Board Members  ... (More)
No Material Diversion of Assets ... (More)

A diversion of assets – any unauthorized conversion or use of the organization's assets other than for the organization's authorized purposes, including but not limited to embezzlement or theft – can seriously call into question a charity's financial integrity. We check the charity's last two Forms 990 to see if the charity has reported any diversion of assets. If the charity does report a diversion, then we check to see if it complied with the Form 990 instructions by describing what happened and its corrective action. This metric will be assigned to one of the following categories:

  • Full Credit: There has been no diversion of assets within the last two years.

  • Partial Credit: There has been a diversion of assets within the last two years and the charity has used Schedule O on the Form 990 to explain: the nature of the diversion, the amount of money or property involved and the corrective action taken to address the matter. In this situation, we deduct 7 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
  • No Credit: There has been a diversion of assets within the last two years and the charity's explanation on Schedule O is either non-existent or not sufficient. In this case, we deduct 15 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
(Less)
Audited Financials Prepared by Independent Accountant ... (More)

Audited financial statements provide important information about financial accountability and accuracy. They should be prepared by an independent accountant with oversight from an audit committee. (It is not necessary that the audit committee be a separate committee. Often at smaller charities, it falls within the responsibilities of the finance committee or the executive committee.) The committee provides an important oversight layer between the management of the organization, which is responsible for the financial information reported, and the independent accountant, who reviews the financials and issues an opinion based on its findings. We check the charity's Form 990 reporting to see if it meets this criteria.

  • Full Credit: The charity's audited financials were prepared by an independent accountant with an audit oversight committee.

  • Partial Credit: The charity's audited financials were prepared by an independent accountant, but it did not have an audit oversight committee. In this case, we deduct 7 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
  • No Credit: The charity did not have its audited financials prepared by an independent accountant. In this case, we deduct 15 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
(Less)
Does Not Provide Loan(s) to or Receive Loan(s) From Related Parties ... (More)
Documents Board Meeting Minutes ... (More)
Distributes 990 to Board Before Filing ... (More)
Compensates Board ... (More)

Policies


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990, or for some metrics on the charity's website, that the organization has these policies in place.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990 and organization's website

Policies:
Conflict of Interest  ... (More)
Whistleblower ... (More)
Records Retention and Destruction ... (More)
CEO Compensation Process ... (More)
Donor Privacy ... (More)

Donors can be reluctant to contribute to a charity when their name, address, or other basic information may become part of donor lists that are exchanged or sold, resulting in an influx of charitable solicitations from other organizations. Our analysts check the charity's website to see if the organization has a donor privacy policy in place and what it does and does not cover. Privacy policies are assigned to one of the following categories:

  • Yes: This charity has a written donor privacy policy published on its website, which states unambiguously that (1) it will not share or sell a donor's personal information with anyone else, nor send donor mailings on behalf of other organizations or (2) it will only share or sell personal information once the donor has given the charity specific permission to do so.

  • Opt-out: The charity has a written privacy policy published on its website which enables donors to tell the charity to remove their names and contact information from lists the charity shares or sells. How a donor can have themselves removed from a list differs from one charity to the next, but any and all opt-out policies require donors to take specific action to protect their privacy.
  • No: This charity either does not have a written donor privacy policy in place to protect their contributors' personal information, or the existing policy does not meet our criteria.

The privacy policy must be specific to donor information. A general website policy which references "visitor" or "user" personal information will not suffice. A policy that refers to donor information collected on the website is also not sufficient as the policy must be comprehensive and applicable to both online and offline donors. The existence of a privacy policy of any type does not prohibit the charity itself from contacting the donor for informational, educational, or solicitation purposes.

(Less)

Transparency


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990, or for some metrics on the charity's website, that the organization makes this information easily accessible.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990 and organization's website

Transparency:
CEO Salary Listed on 990 ... (More)
Board of Directors Listed on Website ... (More)
Key Staff Listed on Website ... (More)
Audited Financial Statements on Website ... (More)
Form 990 Available on Website ... (More)

Additional Information

Unscored

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Total Revenue and Expenses

Total Revenue and Expenses

This chart displays the trend of revenue and expenses over the past several years for this organization, as reported on their IRS Form 990.

Salary of Key Persons

Presented here are this organizations key compensated staff members as identified by our analysts. This compensation data includes salary, cash bonuses and expense accounts and is displayed exactly how it is reported to the IRS. The amounts do not include nontaxable benefits, deferred compensation, or other amounts not reported on Form W-2. In some cases, these amounts may include compensation from related organizations. Read the IRS policies for compensation reporting



Lorna Smith, CEO

$300,000 (5.72% of Total Expenses)


Current CEO and Board Chair can be found in the Leadership & Adaptability report below.

Source: IRS Form 990 (page 7), filing year 2020

Business Master File Data

Below are some key data points from the Exempt Organization IRS Business Master File (BMF) for this organization. Learn more about the BMF on the IRS website


Activities:

Activity data not reported from the IRS


Foundation Status:

Organization which receives a substantial part of its support from a governmental unit or the general public   170(b)(1)(A)(vi) (BMF foundation code: 15)


Affiliation:

Independent - the organization is an independent organization or an independent auxiliary (i.e., not affiliated with a National, Regional, or Geographic grouping of organizations). (BMF affiliation code: 3)

Data Sources: IRS Forms 990

The Form 990 is a document that nonprofit organizations file with the IRS annually. We leverage finance and accountability data from it to form Encompass ratings. Click here to view this organization's Forms 990 on the IRS website (if any are available).

Pandemic Response

This organization was impacted by COVID-19 in a way that effected their financial health in 2020. This normally would have reduced their star rating. Due to the unprecedented nature of the pandemic, we give charities such as this one the opportunity to share the story of COVID's impact on them, and doing this pauses our revision of their rating. Charities may submit their own pandemic responses through their nonprofit portal.


Horizons National reported being impacted by COVID-19 in the following ways:
  • Program Delivery


How COVID-19 impacted the organization's operations financially:

We applied for and received the PPP loan and were able to retain our full staff during COVID.


How COVID-19 impacted the organization's delivery of programs:

Our programming take places primarily for 6 weeks in person. In the summer of 2020, due to COVID precautions, our sites were not able to meet in person. However, 100% of Horizons programs offered remote programming to students. In addition, in March 2020 when COVID forced many people out of work and into our homes, our affiliates worked with families to ensure their basic needs were being met, including providing more than 38,000 meals to families and $100,000 in support for grocery purchases. Our sites worked to ensure that students had the tools they needed to learn virtually during the school year and in the summer. Horizons sites across the country provided more than 1,500 devices to students and families.


How this organization adapted to changing conditions caused by COVID-19:

We shifted resources that would have otherwise been directed to expanding and replicating our program to enhanced support of our existing sites.


Innovations the organization intends to continue permanently after the pandemic:

In June 2020, Horizons sites launched Horizons at Home, a safe, at-home home, hands-on activities blended with online classrooms - plus a focus on social-emotional learning - to deliver an unfortgattable summer for students.


Historical Ratings

Date PublishedForm 990 FYEOverall ScoreOverall Rating
Rating Version: 2.1
2/1/20212019 93.68
12/1/20202019 91.97

This organization received multiple star ratings within this fiscal year, due to an update to its Accountability and Transparency data and/or the receipt of an amended Form 990.

11/1/20192018 95.19
10/1/20192018 93.09
11/1/20182017 91.79
3/1/20182016 93.62
2/1/20182016 93.27
5/1/20172015 91.33
6/1/20162014 89.44
Rating Version: 2.0
11/1/20152014 93.36
10/1/20152014 89.77
3/1/20142013 89.08
11/1/20132012 92.83
4/1/20132012 92.29
9/1/20122011 84.88

Previous: Finance & Accountability  / Next: Leadership & Adaptability

...   Impact & Results


This score estimates the actual impact a nonprofit has on the lives of those it serves, and determines whether it is making good use of donor resources to achieve that impact.


Impact & Results Score

Not Currently Scored

Horizons National cannot currently be evaluated by our Encompass Rating Impact & Results methodology because either (A) it is eligible, but we have not yet received data; (B) we have not yet developed an algorithm to estimate its programmatic impact; (C) its programs are not direct services; or (D) it is not heavily reliant on contributions from individual donors.

Note: The absence of a score does not indicate a positive or negative assessment, it only indicates that we have not yet evaluated the organization.

Learn more about Impact & Results.


Back to Overall

Additional Information

Unscored

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Largest Programs

Largest Programs



Horizons National reported its three largest programs on its FY 2019 Form 990 as:


$3,934,050

Spent in most recent FY

89%

Percent of program expenses


Affiliate Support


$412,846

Spent in most recent FY

9%

Percent of program expenses


Expansion Efforts


$48,353

Spent in most recent FY

1%

Percent of program expenses


Leveraged Learning Initiative


Previous: Impact & Results  / Next: Culture & Community

...   Leadership & Adaptability


This score provides an assessment of the organization's leadership capacity, strategic thinking and planning, and ability to innovate or respond to changes in constituent demand/need or other relevant social and economic conditions to achieve the organization's mission.


Leadership & Adaptability Score

100

out of 100

The score earned by Horizons National is a passing score. This score has no effect on the organization's Star Rating.

Encompass Rating V4 provides an evaluation of the organization's Leadership & Adaptability through the nonprofit organization submitting a survey response directly to Charity Navigator.


Back to Overall

Leadership & Adaptability Report

100

of 100 points

Mission

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking through articulating the organization’s mission


Our Mission: We advance educational equity by building long-term partnerships with students, families, communities, and schools to create experiences outside of school that inspire the joy of learning.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Vision

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking through articulating the organization’s vision.


Our vision is a future in which every child thrives.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Strategic Goals

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking and goal setting through sharing their most important strategic goals.


Goal One: Expansion. Horizons National seeks to increase our capacity by more than 50% to serve as many as 10,000 additional students between 2022-25.

Goal Type: New program(s) based on observed changes in needs among our constituencies/communities served.


Goal Two: Sustainability. Horizons National provides support to ensure existing programs continue to grow, adapt, and reach more students and families each year.

Goal Type: Grow, expand, scale or increase access to the existing programs and services.


Goal Three: Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. Horizons National is committed to creating equitable educational experiences for all students, and promoting a culture of welcoming and inclusion across our Network.

Goal Type: This goal reflects our commitment to further our advocacy work for our organization and or cause area.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Leadership Development

The nonprofit provides evidence of investment in leadership development


Describe an investment in leadership

This year, we hosted Horizons' Community Series: Together in Action for Equity, a virtual leadership development series for program leaders within the Horizons Network. We worked with partner consultants and field experts to host engaging, in-depth sessions two to three times per week from February through April 2021. Session topics focused primarily on equity, diversity, and inclusion, with offerings such as "Supporting Healthy Identity Development through Culturally Responsive Practices" and "Advancing Equity through Strength-Based Messaging," as well as more traditional professional development offerings such as navigating our database, and many opportunities to celebrate Horizons staff, teachers, and programs. Our Community Series also included a keynote session with youth development expert Karen Pittman, titled "Transformative Learning and Development, Robust Equity and Thriving Youth." Overall, Horizons' Community Series contained 23 leadership development sessions over 9 weeks.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Mobilizing for Mission

The nonprofit provides evidence of leadership through focusing externally and mobilizing resources for the mission.


This organization mobilizes for mission in the following ways:
  • Strategic Partnerships

  • Networks of Collective Impact Efforts

  • Thought Leadership

  • Raising Awareness

  • Community Building

What are this organization’s external mobilizaton efforts?

As the hub of an affiliated network, Horizons National mobilizes for our mission through partnerships with host institutions, public school districts, organizations such as National Summer Learning Organization, Learning Heroes, and many more. As the national office, we convene Horizons leaders monthly to share best practices and encourage peer learning. As a learning organization, Horizons National is committed to learning from and sharing with our peers in the out-of-school learning community.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Story of Adaptability

The nonprofit has an opportunity to tell the story of how the organization adapted to tremendous external changes in the last year.


In the last year, Horizons’ flexible model allowed each affiliate to build a program tailored to the unique needs of their students and communities. Research shows that strong, caring relationships, like those fostered at Horizons, can buffer the effects of trauma. To ensure affiliates could remain focused on these relationships and develop the best possible programming for their families, Horizons National took immediate action in response to COVID-19. While affiliates focused on supporting families’ needs like food and connectivity, Horizons National prioritized the immediate needs of affiliates, like shifts in fundraising and exploring ways to support the long-term challenges the Network would face as a result of a global pandemic. We recognized that if programming looked different, so should measurement, and adapted data collection to fit a uniquely challenging environment. Understanding the variation in circumstances across the Network, and committed to individualized support, Horizons National: • Encouraged flexibility by modifying 2020 reporting requirements - suspending all but student enrollment, staff data, and survey administration • Partnered with the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and Project Evident to develop a plan for data collection and analysis • Prioritized information gathering to help us understand how participants, families, and staff experienced Horizons To further support our programs we: • Convened Network leadership weekly bringing together more than 100 staff and board members from around the country to discuss pressing issues • Served as a clearinghouse for information and practices that were most useful to our Network during these unprecedented times. With an abundance of resources being created throughout the field, Horizons National curated external materials and resources to support affiliate operations • Shared resources centered around the CARES Act and relief funding through 2021 ARPA funding

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Additional Information

Unscored

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Organization Leadership

Organization Leadership


Lorna Smith

Chief Executive Officer

Vicki Craver

Chair

Previous: Leadership & Adaptability

...   Culture & Community


This score provides an assessment of the organization's culture and connectedness to the community it serves. Learn more about how and why we rate Culture & Community.


Culture & Community Score

Not Currently Scored

Horizons National is currently not eligible for a Culture & Community score because we have not received its Constituent Feedback or Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion data. Nonprofit organizations are encouraged to fill out the How We Listen and Equity Practices sections of their Candid profile.

Note: The absence of a score does not indicate a positive or negative assessment, it only indicates that we have not yet evaluated the organization.


Back to Overall

Culture & Community Report

Unscored

This beta feature is currently viewable only on desktop or tablet screens. Check back later for updates.

Constituent Feedback

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion


This organization has not provided information regarding the diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) practices it is presently implementing. As such, the organization has not earned a score on this metric. Charity Navigator believes nonprofit organizations implementing effective DEI policies and practices can enhance a nonprofit's decision-making, staff motivation, innovation, and effectiveness.


Methodology


We are utilizing data collected by Candid to document and assess the DEI practices implemented by the organization. Nonprofit organizations are encouraged to fill out the Equity Strategies section of their Candid profiles to receive a rating.


Learn more about the methodology.

Constituent Feedback


Constituent Feedback and Listening Practice data are not available for this organization. Charity Navigator believes nonprofit organizations that engage in inclusive practices, such as collecting feedback from the people and communities they serve, may be more effective.



Methodology


We've partnered with Candid to survey organizations about their feedback practices. Nonprofit organizations can fill out the How We Listen section of their Candid profile to receive a rating.


Learn more about the methodology.

Analysis and Research


Like the overall Encompass Rating System, the Culture & Community Beacon is designed to evolve as metrics are developed and ready for integration. Below you can find more information about the metrics we currently evaluate in this beacon and their relevance to nonprofit performance.


Constituent Feedback


Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

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