Mission: Kars4kids funds educational, developmental, and recreational programs for Jewish youth and their families. Our goal is to foster a generation of well-balanced, produ ... (More)

Kars4Kids is a 501(c)(3) organization, with an IRS ruling year of 2001, and donations are tax-deductible.

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Contact Information

  http://www.kars4kids.org/

  1805 Swarthmore Avenue
Lakewood NJ 08701 

  877-527-7454


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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.




Needs Improvement

This charity's score is 73.05, earning it a 2-Star rating. Charity Navigator believes donors can "Give with Confidence" to charities with 3- and 4-Star ratings.

This score is calculated from two sub-scores:

This score represents Form 990 data from 2020, the latest year published by the IRS. 

This organization has issued a response to this ratingView this organization’s historical ratings.


Back to Overall

Star Rated Report

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Program Expense

Program Expense Ratio

56.9%


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

10.1%


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

32.8%


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

41.7%


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

$0.25


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

0.35 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

14.88%


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



Eliyohu Mintz, CEO

$48,000 (0.06% of Total Expenses)

Plus $49,000 of Compensation from Affliates

Esther Landau, COO

$87,226 (0.11% of Total Expenses)


Robert Moskowitz, President

$80,744 (0.10% of Total Expenses)


Shoshana Joselit, Treasurer

$63,866 (0.08% 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).

Official Charity Response


Kars4Kids is a thriving charity. Our operations are efficient and our administrative costs objectively low. Our financial position is strong, showing solid growth and resilience. Our governance and management is in compliance with best practices. Most importantly, the charity work we support is growing in scope, reach and impact. So why don’t we get 4 stars from Charity Navigator? Our analysis of Charity Navigator’s rating concluded that it comes down to one main factor: our advertising expenses, which put us above Charity Navigator’s somewhat arbitrary “acceptable” fundraising metrics. Unlike most charities, Kars4Kids does not raise funds from government grants, major philanthropic gifts or member/alumni dues. We look outside of the nonprofit sector entirely and offer a service to the general public that generates a steady stream of revenue for our charity programs. It’s an inherently inefficient fundraising method because it requires mass market advertising and monetization of donations - but it means that we can expand the funds available for the charity exponentially, pulling in funds that wouldn’t otherwise be given to charity at all. We take a business-like approach to advertising. Unlike the nonprofit ratings agencies, which look askance at advertising, demanding low budgets to prove efficiency, advertising in the business world is seen as an investment, money well spent in order to achieve profit goals. At Kars4Kids, instead of thinking profit, we think of it as more money for our charitable mission. Our in-house marketing professionals pore over the numbers and sweat the details to keep our advertising spend efficient and effective, as low as it could possibly be without sacrificing growth. We’ve been in touch with the Charity Navigator team to explain this context and ask for their rating to better reflect the reality at Kars4Kids. We’re the only charity running a car donation program at this scale in the country. Other charities of our size contract with third party processors who absorb all the costs associated with marketing and processing donations and then cut them a check for a percentage of the proceeds. Simple and efficient, yes. But not nearly as effective. Our unique in-house model means we can keep costs down but that, along with our scrupulous transparency and integrity in financial reporting, makes true comparative analysis near impossible. We could get a better rating by advertising less. But that would mean leaving money on the table, leaving behind cars that could benefit charity to be hauled straight to the junkyard. And we believe too much in the importance and impact of our mission to scale back for the sake of our rating. 

Historical Ratings

Date PublishedForm 990 FYEOverall ScoreOverall Rating
Rating Version: 2.1
6/1/20222020 73.05
5/1/20212019 69.87
9/3/20192018 75.26
3/1/20192017 75.18
12/1/20182016 68.56
6/1/20182016 66.44

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.

4/1/20172015 63.14
6/1/20162014 65.94
Rating Version: 2.0
2/1/20162014 70.30
12/22/20152014 68.98
2/1/20152013 67.27
Rating Version: 1.0
7/1/20092007 76.47

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

Kars4Kids 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



Kars4Kids reported its largest program on its FY 2020 Form 990 as:


$47,749,076

Spent in most recent FY

100%

Percent of program expenses


KARS 4 KIDS FUNDS EDUCATIONAL, DEVELOPMENTAL, AND RECREATIONAL PROGRAMS FOR JEWISH YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES. OUR GOAL IS TO FOSTER A GENERATION OF WELL-BALANCED, PRODUCTIVE ADULTS. OUR MEANS TO ACCOMP ... (More)


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

85

out of 100

The score earned by Kars4Kids 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

85

of 100 points

Mission

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


KARS 4 KIDS, INC. FUNDS EDUCATIONAL AND YOUTH PROGRAMS FOR JEWISH CHILDREN AND FAMILIES IN COMMUNITIES ACROSS THE UNITED STATES. OUR FULL SUITE OF PROGRAMS INCLUDES SCHOOL PLACEMENT AND TUITION ASSISTANCE, MENTORSHIP AND EXTRACURRICULAR PROGRAMS, FAMILY RETREATS AND SUMMER CAMPS. OUR WIDE ARRAY OF SERVICES IS DESIGNED TO IMPACT EVERY ASPECT OF A CHILD'S DEVELOPMENT FROM THE ACADEMIC TO THE SOCIAL AND CULTURAL. THIS HOLISTIC APPROACH INVOLVES SCHOOL, FAMILY AND COMMUNITY WORKING TOGETHER TO DEVELOP OUR YOUTH INTO PRODUCTIVE AND RESPONSIBLE ADULTS.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Vision

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


Our work is founded on these guiding principles: 1. Every child deserves a chance to succeed in life. 2. Education is key to success in life. 3. Family and community support are essential to a child's healthy development.


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: Establish streamlined operating systems throughout the organization

Goal Type: Invest in the capacity of our organization (financial, management, technical, etc.).


Goal Two: Take advantage of emerging trends and identify and capitalize on opportunities for growth

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


Goal Three: Ensure recruitment and hiring practices are agile and adequate for attracting and retaining the talent necessary to fulfill our mission

Goal Type: Invest in the capacity of our organization (financial, management, technical, etc.).


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Leadership Development

The nonprofit provides evidence of investment in leadership development


Describe an investment in leadership

Many of the current leaders in our organization started out in either volunteer or entry level roles. Our organizational culture is very focused on growing ambitious and capable individual contributors who are dedicated to the mission into higher level management, executive and less formal leadership roles. We provide access to relevant training resources and paid time for professional development. New managers receive mentorship from experienced leaders in the organization. Monthly management meetings provide a forum for newer managers to contribute to organizational decisions while also advancing in their understanding of the organization's bigger picture goals and strategic thinking.

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:

Note: organization did not respond to this question

What are this organization’s external mobilizaton efforts?

Note: The organization did not respond to this question.

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.


Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent supply chain and market changes, the auto industry has been in flux. We've stayed on top of the changes and adapted accordingly to ensure that the funds available for charity use were not impacted. We're thankful that we've continued to offer excellent service to car donors, resulting in continued and even increased funding for the charity work we support.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Additional Information

Unscored

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Organization Leadership

Organization Leadership


Eli Mintz

CEO

Eli Mintz

Chairman

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

Kars4Kids 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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