NJ Non-Profits Struggling to Stay Above Water [AUDIO]
The economy continues to slowly improve, more jobs are being created and the stock market continues to climb, but Jersey non-profits are still struggling.
Linda Czipo, the Executive Director of the Center For Non-Profits, says “for the most part, non-profits are in somewhat of a holding pattern when it comes to the impact of the recession…they are facing somewhat of a perfect storm – with rising demand for services, because we’ve got so many people who have been hit individually by the economy, and funding streams from most major sources are still way below pre-recession levels.”
She says over the past year “there’s been some signs that funding levels have stopped declining -it’s leveled off somewhat, but it’s still way below where it was…so some organizations have retrenched in terms of their programming – some have either frozen or cut staff salaries…certainly organizations are trying to be creative in terms of working together- that’s not a new thing in the community , but they’re certainly continuing to do that – and trying to make up the gaps in other ways- by either raising funds from other sources, trying to recruit more volunteers – non profits are very resilient and very creative but in terms of how this.”
Czipo adds many non-profit “may have had a more diverse array of programming and had to cut out certain programs, some organizations have had to turn people away or end up with waiting lists…this lack of funding has had a direct impact on the ability of organizations to provide services to the people who are depending on them – and more and more, individuals and governments are looking to the non-profit community to provide needed services.”
She points out that increasingly, non profits are simply unable to provide all of the services that they have in the past, “so that can be emergency food, it can be the shelter, it can be things mental health services, counseling -sometimes it may have to do with providing after-school programs for kids…non profits are important socially as well as economically – non-profits are an important employer in the state, so when they’re having a hard time providing services it does affect everyone.”
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