New Year, New Support
January 3, 2012
FT. COLLINS, Colo. - Demand is up but contributions are flat. Those are the results from the most recent Blackbaud Index of Charitable Giving, which found that the recession is putting some charities in tough financial straits. The Nonprofit Finance Fund, a lending and consulting institution for nonprofits, also reports that last year 87 percent of nonprofits nationwide said the recession was affecting their finances, demand for services or both.
The Fort Collins-based LAMBDA Center is one of those nonprofits. The GLBTQ advocacy center was facing debt of more than $35,000 and did not have enough money to operate. So it opted to shut down and sell its assets to the GLBT Center of Colorado.
Former LAMBDA board vice president, the Rev. Barbara Bue, says in this instance something bad led to something good.
"We went to the Center looking for advice. Out of that grew a conversation of 'how could we do this better?' And 'better' ended up looking like the Center expanding here."
This isn't as unusual as it may seem. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that when weaker nonprofits shut down, stronger ones can step in and serve the community better. Bue says she hopes the Center will be able to offer programs that LAMBDA thought were important, but didn't have the financial resources to provide.
"None of us expected it to take the turns it took, but that is what is going to end up happening. The whole thing is playing out in a really nice way."
The Blackbaud Index is at http://tinyurl.com/7t5grzz. The Nonprofit Finance Fund report is available at http://tinyurl.com/4uxx5lg.