Charities Struggle to Serve, Even Survive, Amid Pandemic

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During Times of need nonprofit organizations often jump into help. But now with millions of Americans out of work and donations, dropping many of these charities are themselves having a tough time making ends meet? It's an issue Wall Street Journal Senior Writer. Betsy Morris has been covering betsy first. Let's talk about where's the greatest need He S I mean right now there's a huge disparity in where dollars are going when it comes to nonprofits many food banks can't keep up with all of the. Funding that they're getting. You know also the work that they need to do, but they're really getting a lot of funding right now. And so is interestingly crisis. Nonprofit. Disaster Relief. So there's just a ton of money going toward say vaccine development or medical research, communicable disease research suffering right now are all the nonprofits that do kind of the their normal social service work. So taking care of all the the people who. Have lost jobs or about to lose shelter you know the arts have suffered a lot and. So. Yeah it's it's really unequal right now and betsy is their risks of groups will fold and are looking at innovation to help clients or raise money. Many of them a percentage of them nobody knows exactly how many probably will fail. But in the meantime yes there's a lot of there's a lot of innovation going on right now there's one little nonprofit in New York that basically is all about jazz and they can't have their performances they they. Help support young musicians. They can't do any of that right now. So what they've done which has been interesting is they just had a series of. You know kind of virtual concerts by individuals, jazz performers who were who are really kind of famous and very interesting. The Multiple Sclerosis Society had like many others in the spring had their annual walk series of walks around the country to raise money. and. They were able to raise less than half of what they would normally raise what it's doing now though is a real. Bike a thon comes now and into the fall, and normally that would all be in person part of it can be in person now, some people really on their bikes but but part of it is they've made it virtual so you can stay at home. Your Peleton or whatever you know. You're stationary bike is at home and they've been able to allow you to hook into what all the other riders are doing and have these events, and so it'll be interesting to see I think they're they're hopeful that that will be you know we'll raise probably not everything that they were able to raise last year but they will do better than half for sure. I think they think maybe two thirds of what they raised last year and the need is constant I mean obviously. Sometimes it will fluctuate but. But the bottom line here is at the neatest constant it is constant and these little organizations directors will say you know even though we're not allowed to have our. Tutor kids at our community center or. Counsel them if they're trying to kick drugs or alcohol. We're not meeting right now but we know those kids you need the services and probably even more than ever so and that's true of. All of the different people. And problems that these nonprofits grapple with. So just looking to the future what's the plan of? Attack Woods their business plan or is that just still up in the air like much of life these days I, think the business plan is to if the virus has affected, how they can get to the people they serve they've created all sorts of interesting ways to try to do that. New Ways. And in many cases, it can't be zoom. Because of the you know a lot of people don't have great, Wifi so but in terms of the funding. It's there are a lot of them who are doing quote unquote scenario planning. You know if we're able to raise as much with our our virtual fundraiser, then we can provide these services if we are not able to. Then we go to scenario be which is. To cut I, mean many are having to lay workers off lay off staff you know if. They'll figure out new in different ways to get the services to the people who need them,

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