Code of Ethics


As a matter of fundamental principle, the nonprofit and philanthropic community should adhere to the highest ethical standards because it is the right thing to do. As a matter of pragmatic self-interest, the community should do so because public trust in our performance is the bedrock of our legitimacy. Donors and volunteers support charitable organizations because they trust them to carry out their missions, to be good stewards of their resources, and to uphold rigorous standards of conduct.

Nonprofit and philanthropic organizations must earn this trust every day and in every possible way. But organizations are, at base, people, and it is up to the people of the independent sector―board members, executive leaders, staff, and volunteers―to demonstrate their ongoing commitment to the core values of integrity, honesty, fairness, openness, respect, and responsibility.

The independent sector comprises a diverse array of organizations large and small, those that make grants and those that raise funds from the public, those that operate at the community and national level and those that work outside the United States. That diversity is one of the abiding strengths of our sector. Undergirding this diversity, however, must be a common set of ethical standards.

Adherence to the law is the minimum standard of expected behavior. Transparency, openness and responsiveness to public concerns must be integral to our behavior.

Statement of Values

The Children’s Scholarship Fund values include:

The Code of Ethics

I. Personal and Professional Integrity

All staff, board members, and volunteers of the Children’s Scholarship Fund (“CSF”) will act with honesty, integrity, and openness in all their dealings as representatives of the organization. CSF promotes a working environment that values respect, fairness, and integrity.

II. Mission

CSF has a clearly stated mission and purpose. All of its programs support that mission and all who work for or on behalf of CSF understand and are loyal to that mission and purpose. The mission is responsive to the constituency and communities served by CSF and of value to the society at large.

III. Governance

CSF has an active Board of Directors that is responsible for setting the mission and strategic direction of the organization and oversight of the finances, operations, and policies of the organization. The Board of Directors:

IV. Legal Compliance

CSF is knowledgeable of and complies with all laws, regulations, and applicable international conventions.

V. Responsible Stewardship

CSF manages its funds responsibly and prudently. This includes the following considerations:

VI. Openness and Disclosure

CSF provides comprehensive and timely information to the public, the media, and all stakeholders and is responsive in a timely manner to reasonable requests for information. All information about the organization will fully and honestly reflect the policies and practices of the organization. Basic informational data about CSF, such as the Form 990 and audited financial statements will be posted on our website or otherwise available to the public. All solicitation materials accurately represent CSF’s policies and practices and will reflect the dignity of scholarship beneficiaries. All financial, organizational, and program reports will be complete and accurate in all material respects.

VII. Program Evaluation

CSF regularly reviews program effectiveness and has mechanisms to incorporate lessons learned into future programs. CSF is committed to improving program and organizational effectiveness and develops mechanisms to promote learning from its activities and the field. CSF is responsive to changes in its field of activity and is responsive to the needs of its constituencies.

VIII. Inclusiveness and Diversity

CSF has a policy of promoting inclusiveness and its staff, board, and volunteers reflect diversity in order to enrich its programmatic effectiveness. CSF takes meaningful steps to promote inclusiveness in its hiring, retention, promotion, board recruitment, and constituencies served.

IX. Fundraising

CSF is truthful in its solicitation materials. CSF respects the privacy concerns of individual donors and expends funds consistent with donor intent. CSF discloses important and relevant information to potential donors.

In raising funds from the public, CSF will respect the rights of donors, as follows:

X. Grantmaker Guidelines

In making grants to other organizations CSF has particular responsibilities including the following: