Harrisburg, PA — The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) recently received the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations’ Seal of Excellence after successfully completing their rigorous Standards of Excellence ® accreditation program. To accomplish this recognition PCAR coordinated with a peer review team of experts to review 67 benchmark standards in mission, strategy and evaluation; leadership through the board, staff and volunteers; legal compliance and ethics; finance and operations; resource development; and public awareness, engagement and advocacy through in-depth examination of the organization.
As a leader in anti-sexual violence in the state and nation since 1975, PCAR’s leadership decided to undergo this process to reflect its integrity and professionalism. The organization received both accreditation by PANO and earned its Seal of Excellence in 2020.
The Seal of Excellence has three goals that organizations must support through their operations: building the capacity of the organization, increasing the public’s trust in non-profit organizations and connecting potential donors and volunteers with non-profits that act ethically and are accountable in their program operations, governance, Human Resources, financial management and fundraising practices.
“We care deeply about being true to our mission of ending sexual violence through our core values, one of which is seeking excellence in all our endeavors and commitment to continuous improvement,” PCAR CEO Karen Baker said in response to receiving this recognition. “This is a journey of embracing change, recognizing strengths while improving ourselves and inspiring life-long learning in our field. We are proud that our non-profit peers have recognized the work we do and commitment to high professional standards as we serve others.”
In order to also receive the Seal of Excellence, the board and staff of recipient organizations must show an extensive level of commitment to PANO’s processes and confirm that they believe strongly in promoting a culture of ethics in their operations and governance.
Caitlin Green, Chair of the Board added, “the board is extremely proud to have earned PANO’s recognition as a Standards of Excellence accredited non-profit. We truly appreciate the rigor of this process to quantify how PCAR rises to the daily challenges all non-profits face and continues to provide help, hope, and healing to survivors of sexual harassment, abuse, and assault.”
About Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations (PANO)
PANO is a state-wide membership organization amplifying the impact of the community benefit sector through advocacy, collaboration, learning, communication and support services. PANO exists to support the incredible work of the nonprofit sector and highlight the critical role nonprofits serve. By coming together and recognizing our collective value, Pennsylvania communities and the power to do good will thrive. For more information on PANO and PANO’s Standards for Excellence ® program, visit www.pano.org.
About the Standards of Excellence Institute
The Standards for Excellence originated as a special initiative of Maryland Nonprofits in 1998 and has since expanded into a national program to help nonprofit organizations achieve the highest benchmarks of ethics and accountability in nonprofit governance, management and operations. The program has been formally adopted by ten state, regional and national affiliate organizations, and is supported by 66 Licensed Consultants and over 100 volunteers with professional experience in nonprofit governance and administration. Since its inception, the program has accredited or recognized over 200 individual nonprofit organizations that completed a rigorous application and review process to demonstrate adherence to the Standards of Excellence: An Ethics and Accountability Code for the Nonprofit Sector: www.standardsforexcellenceinstitute.org.