Arlington Thrive

Emergency Funds For Neighbors In Need

Arlington, VA   |
GuideStar Charity Check

Arlington Thrive

EIN: 51-0207684


Arlington Thrive delivers same-day emergency funds to our neighbors in crisis, so they can be secure in their jobs, health, and homes and thrive in a caring community. Any Arlington County resident is eligible to receive assistance.

Ruling year info


Executive Director

Ms. Susan Cunningham

Main address

PO Box 7429

Arlington, VA 22207 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

Arlingtonians Meeting Emergency Needs



Subject area info

Community and economic development

Human services

Basic and emergency aid

Population served info

Children and youth


Low-income people

NTEE code info

Emergency Assistance (Food, Clothing, Cash) (P60)

Housing Expense Reduction Support, Rent Assistance (L82)

Human Services - Multipurpose and Other N.E.C. (P99)

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Arlington Thrive aspires to create an Arlington community where all have homes, are financially stable, and thrive. We are the only organization in Arlington County that provides rapid, same-day support for residents with acute financial crises. For the people we serve, sudden job loss, reduced work hours, chronic and acute illness, an expensive car repair, or even a death in the family can determine whether they can afford to pay monthly bills or purchase food. Families in Arlington do not need to face these burdens alone. Our team of expert case managers work directly with clients to build lasting financial stability by connecting community members in need to all available resources. By providing support during short-term financial crises, Arlington Thrive prevents our neighbors from experiencing the devastating effects of homelessness, hunger, and untreated medical conditions – helping them build self-sufficiency for the long term.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Daily Fund

Daily Emergency Financial Assistance Program – Thrive’s oldest program. The “Daily Fund” provides emergency assistance to Arlington residents who find themselves in a financial crisis. The program pays rent, utility bills, medical and dental bills, prescriptions, transportation and some work-related expenses.The “Daily Fund” provides emergency assistance to Arlington residents who find themselves in a financial crisis. The program pays rent, utility bills, medical and dental bills, prescriptions, transportation and some work-related expenses.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Ethnic and racial groups
Immigrants and migrants

The Carter-Jenkinson Memorial Homelessness Prevention Fund provides rental and related assistance for Arlington households that are experiencing financial crises that put them at risk of eviction or becoming homeless, and whose needs are greater than the Daily Fund can accommodate.

Population(s) Served
Ethnic and racial groups
Economically disadvantaged people
Immigrants and migrants

Created in response to the COVID-19 crisis, The Arlington Emergency Relief Fund (AERF) provides same-day emergency assistance for those facing severe hardship in Arlington.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Immigrants and migrants
Ethnic and racial groups

Like Arlington Thrive’s Daily Emergency Needs Assistance Fund, the Youth in Transition Fund provides immediate financial assistance to youth in transition (ages 17-24) facing short-term emergency financial assistance needs. Youth in Transition can include youth aging out of or exiting foster care and other young adult populations identified by participating partners.

Population(s) Served
At-risk youth
Ethnic and racial groups
Immigrants and migrants
Economically disadvantaged people

Where we work


one of the best small charities in the Wash DC area 2013

Catalogue for Philanthropy: Washington DC

one of the best small charities in the Wash DC area 2016

Catalogue for Philanthropy: Washington DC

James B. Hunter Human Rights award 2021

Arlington County Human Rights Comission

Emily DiCicco Humanitarian Award 2022

Shirlington Employment and Education Center

Outstanding Individual Service award 2022

Arlington County

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of clients served

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Economically disadvantaged people, Immigrants and migrants, Victims and oppressed people

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Context Notes

This number reflects the number of households served with all forms of assistance in fiscal year 2022.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Arlington Thrive provides timely assistance to help our neighbors in need so they can develop the capacity to be stable, secure and thrive in their jobs, health and homes. We accomplish this through our team of dedicated case managers who provide our clients with emergency financial assistance. Our work interrupts the cycle of poverty by preventing unforeseen expenses from becoming insurmountable setbacks. Looking forward, we aspire to address systemic causes of poverty as we treat the symptoms through our existing financial assistance programs. We have developed strategies to continue enacting our vision, grow our organization, and increase the services we provide our clients to set them up for success. Thrive’s major goal is the implementation of pilot programs which will address causes of poverty in our community. Our clients are always the focus of our mission, and we actively use their feedback to inform the creation of programs which meet their evolving needs.

While Arlington Thrive has historically been a small organization, Thrive was selected to partner with Arlington County during the pandemic when the demand on our services increased 400%. Currently, Thrive is proud to have a more public-facing role in the County. We have expanded our staff in order to disburse as much funding as possible to in-need community members. In partnership with Arlington County, we expanded our staff during the pandemic to ensure we could provide front-line support to meet increased demand. Now that our staff has grown and we have specialized in case management, we look forward to evolving our programs as the needs of our clients change. As we improve our services, we are focusing on expanding assistance to underserved Arlington residents who don’t have access to county services. Thrive is deeping collaboration with our partners and encouraging their feedback on our models of support for our clients. Collaborating with our partners and collecting feedback from our clients informs our pilot programs. For instance, we recently created a childcare pilot program to connect parents with affordable care after our clients identified the cost as an obstacle to financial stability. Our fundraising team guarantees program sustainability. These strategies will guide Thrive as we develop long-term solutions to Arlington’s structural inequities.

Arlington Thrive has over 48 years of experience providing emergency financial assistance to our neighbors in need. During that time, we have helped thousands avert devastating consequences such as evictions and utilities shutoffs. We have assisted nearly 5,000 clients since 2019, and we are actively preparing our staff to assist even more clients as we grow our case management team. We are thrilled to announce the hire of a communications manager who will assist Thrive in increasing our visibility as an organization and the visibility of our clients’ needs across multiple platforms and audiences. Our communications team will coordinate closely with our fundraising and management teams to deepen community engagement and strengthen the partnerships which form the foundation of our success. Our programs equip us to address a range of community needs, from emergency financial assistance to addressing systemic causes of poverty. The Daily Emergency Financial Assistance Program (Daily Fund) provides rapid, emergency assistance to Arlington residents experiencing a financial crisis. This program pays rent, utility bills, medical and dental bills, prescriptions, transportation and some work-related expenses. The Carter-Jenkinson Homelessness Prevention Program provides rent and rent-related assistance for Arlington households that are experiencing financial crises that put them at risk of homelessness. In May 2020, in response to the need created by COVID-19, we created the Arlington Emergency Relief Fund (AERF), which provides emergency financial assistance to Arlington households directly affected by COVID-19. Our staff and programs ensure that not only do we prevent homelessness and unemployment; we help people pay for vital health care and we create a stronger, more vibrant community.

Arlington Thrive has achieved extraordinary success with the support of our partners and community throughout the past several years. Following the pandemic, we have built an exceptionally talented case management team who assisted our clients with compassion and professionalism. During this unprecedented crisis, we distributed nearly $10 million in eviction prevention assistance. In response to the pandemic, we have become a technology-driven operation which is almost fully virtual. Now that we have established ourselves as the County’s partner for distributing emergency financial assistance, we are excited to address long-term systemic solutions. We laid the groundwork to increase the supply of affordable childcare which will reduce the financial burden on the parents we serve. Thrive also founded the Arlington Interfaith Network, which will allow us to garner input from expert local advocates and facilitate collaboration between faith and nonprofit sectors. Finally, we are proud of how we have grown the Arlington Safety Net through our flourishing partnerships with the Arlington Community Foundation, elected officials, Arlington’s Department of Human Services and the Community Assistance Bureau, and Thrive’s donors and supporters. In the future, we will continue strengthening our current programs and using client feedback to inform the creation of pilot programs which respond directly to the evolving needs of our neighbors. We look forward to realizing our vision of an Arlington Community where all have homes, are financially stable, and thrive.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 40.44 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 4.1 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 10% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Arlington Thrive

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Arlington Thrive

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Arlington Thrive

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of Arlington Thrive’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

Created in partnership with

Business model indicators

Profitability info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation -$37,694 $27,568 $224,713 $621,715 -$633,561
As % of expenses -3.6% 2.5% 7.7% 9.2% -12.9%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation -$37,694 $27,568 $224,713 $621,587 -$635,751
As % of expenses -3.6% 2.5% 7.7% 9.2% -12.9%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $1,070,672 $1,111,194 $3,266,044 $7,673,801 $4,241,413
Total revenue, % change over prior year -41.3% 3.8% 193.9% 135.0% -44.7%
Program services revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 2.2% 2.4% 0.9% 0.3% 0.7%
Government grants 50.7% 52.6% 68.8% 83.5% 73.5%
All other grants and contributions 47.1% 44.9% 30.3% 16.2% 25.8%
Other revenue 0.0% 0.1% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $1,032,788 $1,116,331 $2,925,344 $6,763,744 $4,927,225
Total expenses, % change over prior year 0.2% 8.1% 162.0% 131.2% -27.2%
Personnel 22.2% 21.7% 10.3% 12.0% 18.9%
Professional fees 3.3% 3.0% 1.2% 1.5% 2.3%
Occupancy 0.3% 0.3% 0.1% 0.1% 0.2%
Interest 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Pass-through 69.5% 68.0% 83.4% 82.1% 70.5%
All other expenses 4.7% 6.9% 5.0% 4.3% 8.1%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total expenses (after depreciation) $1,032,788 $1,116,331 $2,925,344 $6,763,872 $4,929,415
One month of savings $86,066 $93,028 $243,779 $563,645 $410,602
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $0 $7,484 $12,996
Total full costs (estimated) $1,118,854 $1,209,359 $3,169,123 $7,335,001 $5,353,013

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Months of cash 5.4 4.9 4.4 2.8 2.7
Months of cash and investments 14.8 13.7 7.7 4.7 4.7
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 3.4 3.4 2.2 2.1 1.2
Balance sheet composition info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Cash $467,039 $458,018 $1,082,730 $1,594,092 $1,111,119
Investments $805,388 $817,377 $795,293 $1,066,475 $801,668
Receivables $0 $32,825 $0 $68,810 $18,840
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $1,591 $1,591 $1,591 $9,075 $22,071
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 18.9% 17.7%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 1.4% 1.7% 13.2% 4.0% 9.2%
Unrestricted net assets $290,232 $317,800 $542,513 $1,164,100 $528,349
Temporarily restricted net assets $965,382 $969,970 N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 $0 N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $965,382 $969,970 $1,089,318 $1,478,211 $1,325,582
Total net assets $1,255,614 $1,287,770 $1,631,831 $2,642,311 $1,853,931

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Material data errors No No No No No


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

Executive Director

Ms. Susan Cunningham

Susan Cunningham is an experienced leader and innovator with a passion for mission-driven organizations and community engagement. With more than 25 years of experience, she is the CEO and Founder of C2 Change Solutions, a consulting firm dedicated to helping organizations create lasting change. Prior to her current role, Susan was Interim CEO of AHC Inc, a Senior Expert at McKinsey & Company, a Co-Founder and Director of the Office of Compliance Analytics (OCA) at the U.S. Department of Treasury, Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and a Director of New Schools Development at the Seed Foundation and Seed Public Charter School. She holds an impressive academic background with an M.S. and B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Yale University and served as a Fulbright Fellow and Visiting Lecturer in Applied Physics and Renewable Energy at University of Malawi. Susan Cunningham is dedicated to the cause of creating lasting change and helping organizations reach their full potential.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

Arlington Thrive

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.

Arlington Thrive

Board of directors
as of 04/03/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

Karen Daniels

Vice President, Programs at Youth Service America

Term: 2022 - 2025

Laura Lorenzo

Law Office of James Montana PLLC

Janet Elman


Sandy Winger

Volunteer, Meals on Wheels

Scott Friedrich

MedStar Health

Ryan Shrieves

Risk Management Director Capital One

Karen Daniel

Youth Service America

Abigail Suarez

JP Morgan Chase & Co

Denise Sughrue

Toffler Associates

Camilla Taft Hicks

US Department of State

Rob Frederick Jr.

Management & IT Consultant

Susan Cappellini

Capital Impact Partners

Jenifer White

Retired, Human Resources Director

Scott Woodworth

Attorney at Edinger Associates

Delisha Davis

Pastor, Calloway United Methodist Church

Roy Brathwaite

Head of Strategy and Financial Planning, Amazon Web Services

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 2/7/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data


Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/13/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.