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Even During COVID, Nonprofits Can Thrive

In July, the NonProfit Times wrote that nearly four in ten nonprofits could close due to COVID-19-related revenue shortages over the next three years. In August, the Wall Street Journal reported that while “Covid-19 donations have soared, much of that generosity hasn’t reached thousands of other nonprofits that aren’t directly involved in pandemic relief.” Yet the nonprofit organizations who I work for have realized a combined total of more than $188,000 in new funding during the past couple months.

I work solely for agricultural education nonprofit organizations. Of all giving in the U.S., only 5.5% goes to rural causes, even though the rural population makes up approximately 19% of the U.S. population. These statistics about rural charitable giving are quite grim and should make fundraising during COVID-19 even more difficult. Yet the nonprofits I work for are succeeding. Why is that?

One good example is the Grange Foundation. The Grange Foundation’s board of directors has undertaken a review of the organization’s structure, policies and plans. They updated their mission statement and are also nearly finished with their new strategic plan. I have had the pleasure of helping the Grange with their fund development & improvement plan, their marketing & communications plan and the development of new fundraising documents. All of these will help them to be successful now and in the future.

Earlier this month, I conducted a Zoom fundraising training seminar for the Grange Foundation’s board of directors and staff. They realize that they have a significant role in fundraising which will ensure the organization’s success in accomplishing its mission and in securing the financial resources that they need.

During these strange times of COVID-19, all of my non-profit clients, including the Grange Foundation, are not resting on their laurels. Conversely, many U.S. nonprofits have chosen to hunker down until the COVID-storm passes and have also cut staffing. This is the time to be proactive to ensure the successful accomplishment of your mission and to also ensure financial success.

I believe that those nonprofits who are successful have a compelling mission, strong leadership, and a passion for their organization. They're also proactive in their fundraising efforts and will succeed in even the most difficult times.

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