Partners for Shared Prosperity In Nepal

aka dZi Foundation   |   Ridgway, CO   |

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GuideStar Charity Check


EIN: 84-1595852


dZi partners with communities in Nepal to achieve shared prosperity by ensuring access to basic needs, catalyzing inclusive economic growth, and creating an environment for lasting change.

Ruling year info


Executive Director

Wende Valentine

Main address

PO Box 632

Ridgway, CO 81432 USA

Show more contact info



Subject area info

Community and economic development

Human services

International development

Unknown or not classified

Population served info

Children and youth


Economically disadvantaged people

NTEE code info

Human Service Organizations (P20)

Community Improvement, Capacity Building N.E.C. (S99)

Unknown (Z99)

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

In this remote region, access to markets and resources is limited, and there are few opportunities to earn income locally. People often have a difficult choice: stay and face a lack of opportunity or leave their village in search of greater prosperity. Due to little government and INGO funding in the region, Eastern Nepal has faced a chronic lack of investment. Many community members do not have reliable access to safe drinking water and adequate nutrition, send their children to poorly built and under-resourced public schools, and are disadvantaged by the lack of safe bridges and adequate public infrastructure. The impact on women and girls is disproportionate to men as they areprimarily responsible for collecting water and meeting their familys basic needs all of which is physically demanding and time-consuming. At the same time, the rapid arrival of climate change poses further challenges, such as biodiversity loss and crop failureendangering the livelihoods.

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?

Seed, Grow, Sustain

dZi's model has always relied on the leadership of community members, and we take great care to ensure that everyone is included in the planning and implementation of projects – regardless of gender or caste. Together, we create change through this proven, three-step process:

1. Seed: Access and Equity – dZi begins by creating a shared, inclusive vision with the entire community, setting priorities for the partnership, and building the capacity and skills of community members to lead this work.
2. Grow: Opportunities to Thrive – dZi builds equitable, diverse, and inclusive livelihood, education, and health programs that remove barriers to basic needs, create opportunities for people to thrive, and foster community-led progress.
3. Sustain: Systems and Culture – dZi focuses on ensuring the skills and systems are in place for community members to continue leading and maintaining these gains for lasting impact.  

Population(s) Served

Where we work

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 program sites

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Seed, Grow, Sustain

Type of Metric

Context - describing the issue we work on

Direction of Success


Context Notes

As of 2024, dZi worked with thirteen rural partner communities in Eastern Nepal.

Average increase in income for rural farmers (in dollars)

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Seed, Grow, Sustain

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success


Context Notes

Through dZi's Agriculture Program, rural farmers are using organic farming practices, improved infrastructure, and access to cash crops to grow their incomes.

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.

Founded on the belief that communities know what they need most, dZi has pioneered an effective and holistic community development model that is culturally informed, rooted in local knowledge, and responsive to the changing contexts of Nepal.

dZi begins by creating a shared, inclusive vision with the entire community by focusing on its most basic needs and forming critical partnerships with any organizations already operating in the community.

dZi then offers the resources and technical assistance needed to make progress on that long-term vision helping communities build essential infrastructure and implementing programs in education, health, and livelihoods.

Throughout all of its engagements, dZi invests in strengthening local capacity, helping community members develop the skills to plan, manage, and carry out the work on their own and ensuring that it is sustained well after dZi exits.

dZis core principles serve as a compass to discover the most impactful methods to enhance the well-being of rural communities and establish lasting transformations. Since its inception, dZi has accrued a wealth of knowledge and insights that have converged to inform the blueprint for program development aimed at fostering systemic change.

With communities entering the fold of Nepals recently decentralized governance system and new roads, dZi is refining its programmatic approach to scale its impact by partnering with local governments to support inclusive, thriving, and resilient communities on local terms. To do so, dZi has launched aPartnership for Shared Prosperity model designed to lift an entire Rural Municipality out of extreme poverty.

At the heart of dZi's strategy is its theory of change, a strategic framework that illuminates the path for planning, execution, and assessment. This theory elucidates how early and intermediate milestones lay the foundation for enduring, long-term outcomes.

Drawing from its extensive experience in meaningful and impactful community involvement and its recognition of the imperative to collaborate with emerging partners and adapt to evolving circumstances, dZi remains dedicated to identifying the most efficient approaches to foster inclusive, flourishing, and resilient communities.

dZi's strategic initiatives extend beyond addressing poverty in isolation; they also aim to confront and transform the root causes of systemic poverty, thereby charting a sustainable trajectory towards shared prosperity for communities.

Empowering the most vulnerable households requires tailored solutions. dZi collaborates with communities to establish localized poverty criteria, pinpoint those in greatest need, and design customized programs aimed at elevating the most disadvantaged households out of poverty. This approach ensures their active engagement in the pursuit of prosperity, transforming them from passive beneficiaries into active contributors to their local economies.

Embedding the active engagement of citizens in local development and decision-making is a priority. dZi facilitates establishing and functioning inclusive Tole Development Organizations (TDOs), which serve as representative bodies for local residents in the development and decision-making arenas. This approach guarantees that every citizen, regardless of their background or situation, gains the empowerment to take an active role in inclusive local development efforts.

Promoting equitable access to essential services for impoverished and marginalized households at the local level is crucial. dZi assists Local Governments (LGs) in crafting, executing, and embracing a localized framework, strategy, and plan for Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI). This not only broadens the reach of fundamental services to encompass disadvantaged and marginalized households but also tailors their programs to address critical concerns like gender-based violence and socioeconomic exclusion.

Economic resilience is key to securing enduring prosperity. dZi aids LGs in creating inclusive Local Economic Development (LED) policies and investing in local safety nets to ensure that communities are equipped with the skills, knowledge, infrastructure, relationships, and social capital necessary to uphold and enhance their quality of life even in the face of adversities and setbacks.

Fortifying communities against the impacts of climate change is critical. dZi supports LGs in formulating climate and disaster risk reduction policies and plans that specifically address the vulnerabilities of marginalized households. This approach strengthens capacity to withstand challenges, promotes eachcommunity'ssustainable development, and safeguards the well-being of its most vulnerable members.

The dZi Foundation has worked in Nepal for the last twenty-five years. In that time, we have cultivated trust and deep relationships with our partner communities. We have also helped to form and strengthen local NGO partners in each community, which are representative of the local population. With these NGOs, we implement projects together to ensure local stewardship and sustainability once we leave. Over the last fifteen years, we have a proven track record of developing and refining the Deep Development model, and are known as one of Nepal's leading grassroots development organizations.

We have a strong, committed team of 30 staff working in Nepal, more than half of whom work full-time in our project area. The majority of our staff in Nepal are from our partner communities themselves. Our US support team has a strong fundraising ethic and robust financial and monitoring systems.

To date, we have established strong partnerships with thirteen communities in Eastern Nepal, serving over 50,000 people in total.

Together, we have built 42 schools and more than 61 safe drinking water systems. Farmers have collectively earned thousands of dollars of new income from our agriculture programs and are now eating dozens of new types of fruits and vegetables they grew, including tomatoes, kiwis, and broccoli. These are among countless other improvements in the quality of life of the people in our partner communities. In addition to these income and infrastructure-related gains, members of our partner communities have demonstrated reduced incidence of diarrheal disease and increased unity. Multiple villages led initiatives to ban littering and harmful pesticides and chemicals. We have also implemented some of the most comprehensive and effective urine recycling programs in Nepal.


Fiscal year: Jul 01 - Jun 30
Financial documents
2023 dZi 2023 FS 2022 dZi 2022 FS 2021 FY 20/21 Audited Financials 2019 dZi Foundation 2016
done  Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant. info

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 2023 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 55.55 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2023 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 7.9 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2023 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 12% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data


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


Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of DZI FOUNDATION A COLORADO NON-PROFIT CORPORATION’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.

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Business model indicators

Profitability info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation -$190,718 -$139,537 -$101,796 -$5,036 -$440,208
As % of expenses -13.9% -9.2% -6.4% -0.3% -22.1%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation -$210,462 -$140,430 -$102,689 -$5,036 -$440,208
As % of expenses -15.1% -9.3% -6.4% -0.3% -22.1%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $1,383,049 $1,370,593 $1,300,036 $1,682,946 $1,543,641
Total revenue, % change over prior year -20.8% -0.9% -5.1% 29.5% -8.3%
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 1.4% 0.4% 0.0% 0.1% 0.2%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 5.0% 3.8% 0.0%
All other grants and contributions 98.6% 99.0% 95.0% 96.1% 98.8%
Other revenue 0.0% 0.6% 0.0% 0.0% 1.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $1,374,408 $1,515,919 $1,602,508 $1,857,006 $1,995,280
Total expenses, % change over prior year -12.6% 10.3% 5.7% 15.9% 7.4%
Personnel 39.2% 40.0% 35.0% 39.2% 43.7%
Professional fees 2.7% 5.3% 7.0% 2.2% 3.0%
Occupancy 1.5% 1.6% 1.4% 1.3% 1.2%
Interest 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Pass-through 1.1% 1.0% 0.9% 0.0% 0.0%
All other expenses 55.4% 52.1% 55.6% 57.3% 52.1%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Total expenses (after depreciation) $1,394,152 $1,516,812 $1,603,401 $1,857,006 $1,995,280
One month of savings $114,534 $126,327 $133,542 $154,751 $166,273
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $4,387 $64,113 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $1,508,686 $1,643,139 $1,741,330 $2,075,870 $2,161,553

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Months of cash 4.7 12.8 10.6 6.1 3.1
Months of cash and investments 13.6 12.8 10.6 8.0 5.0
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 10.2 8.1 6.9 5.9 2.9
Balance sheet composition info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Cash $535,322 $1,619,457 $1,416,107 $949,855 $520,449
Investments $1,022,861 $0 $0 $282,564 $304,968
Receivables $280,592 $178,062 $57,091 $12,500 $0
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $75,906 $75,906 $69,147 $69,147 $8,012
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 97.6% 98.8% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 3.5% 8.9% 9.8% 7.3% 11.6%
Unrestricted net assets $1,164,860 $1,024,430 $921,741 $916,705 $476,497
Temporarily restricted net assets $620,534 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $620,534 $614,745 $414,069 $238,757 $253,314
Total net assets $1,785,394 $1,639,175 $1,335,810 $1,155,462 $729,811

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
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

Wende Valentine

A powerful advocate for social and economic equity, Wende brings 20 years of rich field experience with a variety of international nonprofit organizations to her role as the Executive Director. Wende leads dZi’s program planning and implementation, fundraising, team development, public relations, and financial management – all while fostering a culture of innovation and collaboration. She holds an M.A. in International Development and her work, study, and travels have taken her to 55 countries around the globe.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990


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.


Board of directors
as of 04/18/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

James Duckworth

No Affiliation

Term: 2022 - 2024

Emily Martin

Heike Sommer

Aanchal Tiwari

Abhaya Shrestha

Andrew Namanny

Bhumika Piya

Brent Bishop

Cheryl Jensen

Karin Lapping

Matthew Weatherly-White

Nicole Seawell

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? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 6/7/2023

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

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data


No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 12/08/2020

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 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 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 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.
There are no contractors recorded for this organization.

Professional fundraisers

Fiscal year ending

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 Schedule G

Solicitation activities
Gross receipts from fundraising
Retained by organization
Paid to fundraiser