Real Alternatives is a nonprofit organization providing parenting support services in Michigan, Indiana, and Pennsylvania. Funded by the states they serve, Real Alternatives was one of the first organizations in Pennsylvania to meet all the accreditation criteria associated with the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organization (PANO) Standards for Excellence.
A membership organization, PANO serves the nonprofit sector by providing specially trained consultants to assist groups with the accreditation process. The program is part of a national initiative that promotes the highest standards of ethics, accountability, and effectiveness in nonprofit management and operations. The applicants are required to demonstrate that they meet all the benchmarks of the Standards for Excellence code to receive accreditation. Throughout the process, resources are available to help charitable groups of all sizes implement a stronger infrastructure, ensuring legal and regulatory practices are being followed.
Gaining accreditation benefits a nonprofit group by strengthening its officials’ decision-making skills, improving fundraising, and building trust within its community. Periodic reaccreditation assures continued compliance.
Launched in 1996 through a state-sponsored initiative to lower abortion rates, Real Alternatives originally served women through 72 centers across Pennsylvania.