Happy Holiday Season!
This is the time of year when gift giving becomes part of our everyday lives, and in the non-profit world, we are all clamoring to be a part of the generosity. To steal some verbiage from my eleven year old daughter, “the struggle is real.” The struggle is to find the dollars needed to do our work. Non-profits often have an easier time raising large sums of money for programming than for the basic necessities (printer toner, salt for our walkways, and coffee for our hospitality space) that are needed to make the programs work. However, without these pieces, all the pieces, we cannot do those impactful, amazing, soul tugging things that foundations graciously support.
This is where the clamoring comes in. We need the precious individual gifts that can be used to do whatever piece we need them to do. We operate on the leanest overhead budget possible, but even a lean budget requires real dollars to support our work.
This struggle was never more real to me than a few weeks ago. We had just received one of our largest donations to date to do a very impactful program, and shortly after we received the check, we had what I like to call the “Great Technology Crisis of 2014.” One by one all of our printers ran out of toner, our phone system went out, the internet went down and our heat worked sporadically at best. Our programs came to a halt while we addressed each issue.
This, my friends, is the struggle. Nonprofits are asked to have little to no overhead costs, but in our organization all of our costs are a neccessary investment in our mission. It is difficult to get people excited about toner, but toner is essential to our every day work. I want you to be excited about toner. I want you to know how important it is to our work and how much we value the dollars you give in response to appeals such as these; dollars we can use to make an amazing impact in Lower Price Hill.
So this holiday season, when you are reading a million letters like this, I hope you think of us. I hope you think about our toner and electric bills and all of the things your donation, no matter the size, allows us to do to change lives. YOU play a key role in removing barriers to education and opportunity, and we are thankful for you.