Hello my dear nonprofit friends! Congratulations, you’ve made it through a tumultuous week of changes in our communities, our work and home life. Now more than ever I have seen my fellow nonprofits step up and lead through some incredibly challenging situations.
Almost daily I see examples of how our nonprofit community is putting the needs of those they serve first and foremost, even amidst their own financial challenges as fundraising events have been canceled and postponed and that critical influx of cash to fund the work is not there in this moment.
I want to assure all of you that we truly are here to support you, provide the resources you need and to be your advocate. But beyond that, we also want to be your calm in the storm.
Our mission is to educate, advocate and collaborate in support of stronger nonprofits and by fulfilling our mission to you we hope that we can help you remain grounded in your work, that our reminders to take time out for self-care and to appreciate the beauty in this new, strange yet brokenly beautiful world right now are taken as they are meant to be: to provide hope.
There is so much good in all of us, we want to be able to share your stories of hope, help, grit and determination in the face of challenging odds.
To that end, if you have a story of collaboration or selfless support from your organization, please email firstname.lastname@example.org so we can leverage our communication channels to highlight what an amazing place we live in and reinforce how our nonprofit community time and again sits on the front line of response in times of crisis, and does it flawlessly. If we can lift you up and share your work we’re fulfilling our mission for you.
Earlier this week we hosted a call with nonprofits all over Idaho and I learned two very important things from that call: Make sure to practice self-care. As much as needs are emergent and changing by the minute, we all need to make sure that we take the time we need to refresh and recharge. Here in southwest Idaho we’ve been blessed with springlike conditions and it has been wonderful to see people out and about in my neighborhood, kids playing and neighbors connecting.
The second thing I learned is that the Idaho Nonprofit Center’s resources are more important than ever before. We have set up a COVID-19 resource page on our website and we are constantly adding and organizing new content for you daily. If there are resources or training you want and need, please email email@example.com and we’ll do everything we can to help you out.
Our team has adjusted to working remotely as much as we can after three days and hope to find comfort in the new normal. On the plus side my commute to the office is wonderful, it takes about a minute AND that includes a stop for coffee on the way. We’re blessed with technology that allows us to do our work, remain connect AND to serve our nonprofit community.
As we shift gears to support you all through our mission centric work here’s what we have been working on for you.
For the EDUCATE portion of our mission, as I mentioned we have a wonderful yet ever-evolving list of resources for you.
In addition, we’re pleased to announce a series of webinars that will be facilitated by Kari Anderson, from Incite! Consulting Group. We will send additional details out on registration as soon as possible, but here’s what we have planned:
Date/time: March 25, 1 p.m.
Topic: Canceling/postponing events
Description: If you’ve had to postpone or outright cancel a fundraising event, or are having to contemplate this scenario in the next couple of months, I know you’re in a panic. BEFORE you automatically offer to refund event attendee and sponsor dollars, let’s pause. There are methods to recoup lost revenue, engage supporters and keep your mission front and center. Join me to learn more!
Date/time: March 26, 1 p.m.
Topic: Engaging donors virtually/Making asks to donors
Description: We are so used to meeting - in person - with donors to share stories and updates. To make the case for support. To share how their gift has allowed your mission to be achieved. And now…..Join me to talk about what to do in this time of uncertainty. What types of conversations to have. What information to share. And, when to make the ask.
Date/time: March 31, 1 p.m.
Topic: Managing remote staff
Description: Good news. Management of remote staff isn’t new. Nonprofits who have more than one location have been doing this for years, and we’ve got a playbook for this! If remote management is new for you, join me. I’ve got some easy steps for you to follow to keep all of your team engaged, informed, productive, and accountable.
Date/time: April 2, 1 p.m.
Topic: How to leverage extra time
Description: So, all of a sudden you have some extra time on your hands. What to do? Once you have reorganized your fridge and closet, join me to talk through key projects that you “just haven’t had time for” at work. You’ll then use this time getting organized, set and ready to ramp and scale when work returns to normal.
Date/time: April 3, 1 p.m.
Description: I know, I know. Self-care is so….talked about. And you might be pretty good at it. But, are you really taking care of yourself right now? It’s hard. It feels like we should be working on solutions all the time. But, there’s no way we can get to solutions unless we take care of US. Spend some time with me and I’ll share how difficult this is (especially for those of us who are Type A, first born and a little control-y). I’ll also share how I’ve become better at this, and how business can survive - and thrive - when we all take time to do this oh so important thing.
Date/time: April 8, 1 p.m.
Topic: Adapting your strategic plan
Description: All of a sudden, the goals that are a part of your current strategic plan just don’t seem so relevant. What to do? Let’s talk about the important things: cash flow, communications, caring for humans. And, how to reprioritize critical elements of your current strategic plan to assist you in weathering this crisis.
We sincerely want to thank Kari Anderson of Incite! Consulting Group for putting these together for us so quickly. We will have additional training opportunities in the coming weeks as well, we’re working behind the scenes now to get the right training for you.
For the ADVOCATE portion of our mission, we have been working to keep you updated on movement and both the state and federal level and will continue to do so.
Not only do we send emails out but we link most all of our policy related communications on our blog. We are working diligently to provide a rundown of the impacts on the nonprofit sector from the Families First legislation that was signed into law earlier this week and will share that as soon as possible.
We are tracking additional federal relief legislation and will keep you informed as things change as well as providing updates to you from the Governor’s office, for example the SBA loans available to nonprofits.
We are also hoping for an expansion of unemployment benefits for Idahoans displaced during the pandemic as well.
We also learned today that those without work are invited to apply for many new (paid) positions at many healthcare related organizations statewide. There is a shortage of workers right now so those who find themselves displaced temporarily may be able to find paid employment in the interim.
On the COLLABORATE portion of our mission we are so grateful to be a part of the COVID-19 Relief fund set up with the Idaho Community Foundation in partnership with the United Way of the Treasure Valley and the Idaho Nonprofit Center. We look forward to sharing with you how to apply and receive funds, that information should be coming shortly.
In coordination with community leaders representing the City of Coeur d’Alene, Coeur d’Alene Chamber of Commerce, Panhandle Health District, CDAIDE, St. Vincent de Paul, CDA School District 271, and Orchard Ridge Senior Living, United Way of North Idaho, has established the CDA COVID-19 Relief Fund. And while this isn’t our own collaboration, it is a wonderful example of community collaboration in north Idaho.
We are fielding phone calls and emails from funders all over the region looking for ways to plug in and support our communities. What a blessing it has been to be one of the many connectors in our community, and being able to work side by side with so many wonderful and generous foundations, businesses and organizations.
Earlier this week I penned a guest column and submitted it to news media outlets across the state. Let me know if you happen to see it and if you don’t and you’ve got connections to the local newspaper in your area, please help us carry this message to our state.
Please don’t forget about our very brief needs assessment, we’ll keep it open through the weekend and share back with you, the community and our funding partners what we learn. It is totally anonymous so we hope you’ll take just a couple of minutes to provide input, this information will also help us better educate, advocate and collaborate in support of you.
In closing, I wanted to once again commend ALL of our nonprofit community on our collective response to the crisis at hand. Thank you so very much for all that you do day in and day out, every single day in times of crisis and even when there isn’t a pandemic at hand. I simply cannot imagine what our world would look like without our nonprofit community.
Make sure you take some time to unplug this weekend if possible. Personally, I am enjoying the ability to step away from my computer each day to watch what is starting to look like an almost Mayberry existence in my neighborhood. Kids playing together, neighbors talking and helping each other and no one in a rush to be somewhere. I hope we can all take time to appreciate some of the silver linings in the chaos.
“We can laugh
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