Addressing Non-Profit Impact Communication

Project Sponsor: Caras con Causa / Michael Fernández Frey

Team Members: Darian Tavana (Computer Science ’23), John Puksta (Electrical and Computer Engineering ’23), John Higgins (Computer Science ’23), Alexander Breiling (Robotics Engineering + Biology ’23)

Project Advisor: Alex Sphar and Brigitte Servatius

Project Deliverables:

Link to Final Report

Link to Final Presentation

Link to Dashboard Documentation

Abstract: Non Profit Organizations (NPOs) struggle to utilize their data to demonstrate their organizational effectiveness. NPOs collect data but struggle to extract information from the collected data because of a limited use of technology and lack of technical expertise. This IQP aims to address this societal problem by researching, developing, and implementing data visualizations that demonstrate a NPOs progress. An iterative design process was conducted with Caras con Causa to determine technology to use, visualizations, necessary changes in data practices, and what metrics to display. Through this process, a dashboard solution using Google Data Studio was refined to display key metrics for Caras con Causa’s LabCom Program.

Executive Summary:


Many NPOs struggle to utilize the data that they collect. Effectively communicating data to the public allows organizations to inform stakeholders, improve community awareness, better community engagement, and to attract volunteers (Dutta, 2020). Effective data communication internally can help a nonprofit evaluate its successes, failures, and where it needs to dedicate its resources to improve its operations in the future (Fruchterman, 2016). The focus of this project is to research methods to improve data utilization for NPOs. Our plan to achieve this is to evaluate data visualization methods from other NPOs and define key metrics with our sponsor to construct an effective solution to communicate their data. Caras con Causa, the sponsor of this project, is a NPO that would like to improve the way that they utilize their data.   


NPOs face a broad societal problem when it comes to communicating their success metrics to various audiences. NPOs are heavily reliant on public perception and advertising to receive funding. However, this is not easy for NPOs to achieve because of their lack of technical expertise and small budget. We discuss the issues NPOs commonly have with data utilization, the importance of data in nonprofit funding, how other nonprofits visualize their data, and a basic description of Caras con Causa, the sponsor of this project.

Research Methods

The focus of this project is to develop a set of interactive dashboards to help Caras con Causa visualize their data more effectively. Google Data Studio was selected as the platform of choice for the project. This is primarily because of its ease of connection to Google Sheets, the platform that Caras uses to store all of their data. We focused on the creation of a dashboard for Caras con Causa’s LabCom project, a science education program.

Dashboard Creation

We go over each prototype of the dashboard created for LabCom, its main features, and the issues that we encountered in the process, highlighting the iterative design process involved in the creation of the final product. We also created a general lookup dashboard to track the contributions of individuals across the whole organization.

Recommendations and Conclusion

Caras con Causa is missing a lot of contact information for their participants. We recommend that this be corrected if possible in order to ensure more accurate reporting.

We also recommend a general improvement of data practices including standardizing all Google Forms used to collect data, building upon our dynamic forms prototype, condensing the amount of data sources for each program, and moving away from manual data collection.

Our third and final recommendation is to adapt our LabCom prototype to other programs. This process will be much more streamlined once data practices have been improved throughout the organization.


Reforestation Activity Photo 1