5 Ways Nonprofits Can Weather COVID-19 by Joan Garry
In Harvard Business Review, non-profit consultant Joan Garry Outlines 5 Ways Nonprofits Can Weather COVID-19
Nonprofits are providing essential lifelines to help people get through the COVID-19 crisis and will be an essential part of recovery efforts. Just as critical as the government, yet more nimble, they are an essential tool for societies to address vital needs. However, nonprofits are facing incredible challenges in this moment.
In a new op-ed for Harvard Business Review, non-profit consultant and coach Joan Garry outlines five tips nonprofits should follow to continue to serve their communities during these dark times: 1) Anticipate 2) Create 3) Nurture 4) Pivot and 5) Ask. She explains that nonprofits closing their doors along with the critical services they provide will compound the crisis for many.
“Many nonprofits have big and important missions, but most are under-resourced. Of the 1.5 million in the United States, 65% have budgets under $500,000. The domestic violence shelter, the food pantry, the local free clinic — these groups are typically run on shoestring budgets with volunteer staffs. Your jaw would drop if you knew how many executive directors work 65 hours a week and are paid for 20. And again, this is on a good day. And these are not good days — not even close.
Nonprofits are struggling in a way that I, a veteran in this field, have never seen before. In Verona, Wisconsin, the Badger Prairie Network can’t keep up with the demand for its food pantry services; both food and financial donations and hours worked by volunteers are down. At Ray of Sunshine, an equine therapy program for those living with cancer in San Diego County, immunocompromised clients can’t come, and leaders are struggling to raise the money they need to keeping paying staff and caring for the animals.
How can underfunded, understaffed nonprofits continue to serve their communities during these dark times?”