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How Individuals Can Continue to Support Nonprofits During the Pandemic

by Kelly McCormack

Nonprofits are the backbones of our communities, providing care for some of Maine’s most vulnerable residents, and they cannot be forgotten in times of need. We’re all doing things a little differently right now – getting creative, thinking outside the box, doing things that aren’t the norm – the same goes for supporting nonprofits. Here are some ways individuals can help nonprofits continue to provide services to our communities:

  • Keep volunteering. Even in normal times, volunteers are critical to the services nonprofits provide. The Maine People’s Alliance has organized Mainers Together that is assessing community needs and sharing regional volunteer efforts throughout the state. Think of virtual projects that you could do like graphic design, database management, grant writing, etc.
  • Donating goods. Supplies are still needed everywhere. Food pantries are still accepting donations and many are sharing on social media special items they need. Homeless shelters and safe houses are overcrowded and in desperate need of supplies. Animal rescues and shelters are closed to the public, but still have animals to care for and share their own Amazon wish lists online. 
  • Don’t ask for a refund. Spring is the start of event season – performances, fundraisers, cultural gatherings, educational workshops, to name a few. Many nonprofits rely on revenue from such events to fund their services and programs. If an event for which you purchased a ticket is no longer happening, consider not requesting a refund and turn that sale into a donation to the organization.
  • Complete the 2020 Census. Yes, this is still happening and it’s open! Nonprofits are working to ensure everyone in their communities are counted so that appropriate federal funds are distributed to local schools, roads and other public services. You can expect to hear more from MANP on this in the coming weeks.
  • Simply reach out + connect. Let nonprofits know you’re thinking about them. Follow them on social media and show some love. Even just hearing from someone who cares may be the most comforting thing they can get right now.

Right now, nonprofits are at the front lines fighting to keep our communities safe and our most vulnerable protected during this pandemic. Find the nonprofits in your area and check out their websites and social media to find other ways to help!

What does your organization need from individuals? Share in the comments below.

Information on COVID-19 for Maine Nonprofits

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