Non-profit organizations form in the hope and belief that they can address societal needs in ways that are more efficient and effective than have been previously tried. Some organizations have a mission focused on solving a specific problem like regional homelessness or finding a cure for a disease. Others have a broader mission that desires to serve the community in changing ways over time. Either way, there is an inherent knowledge that while the mission is firm, the strategies and tactics needed to achieve that mission will need to be flexible over time.
Never is that more apparent than in times of crisis or uncertainty. The current COVID-19 pandemic is dramatically affecting every facet of life and nonprofits are adapting and changing every day, sometimes from hour to hour. Nonprofits are shining and demonstrating the differentiation from for profit businesses in incredible ways. In many cases public officials are turning to you because they know you can deliver in ways they cannot.
If you are in the first group focusing on a specific problem, you are reacting and innovating to make certain your constituents are still receiving the care and help they need. You’re staffing up extra hotlines to take calls, you’re creating drive-through service delivery models or no-contact methods of taking the resources to the people who would otherwise come to you. Your commitment to the mission is unshakeable and your creativity knows no bounds.
If you are in the second group focusing on broader issues. you are pivoting to provide help for needs that didn’t exist two weeks ago. You’re providing childcare for the children of first responders and health care workers, you’re making sure kids are getting meals they would have otherwise received at school, you’re calling senior citizens that you used to greet face to face to make sure they’re ok. Your commitment to the mission is unwavering and your flexibility is unbelievable.
“This too shall pass” as my Dad would say. When it does the financial toll on your organization will be real. But rest in the knowledge that you stood true to your mission. Because of this the community will remember what you’ve done and will be open to supporting you in the future.
You’re all amazing and thanks for all you do.
Fundraising in Uncertain Times
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We have updated our resource page on Fundraising in Uncertain Times. including adding recordings from last week's webinars and a new podcast!