Monday, June 27, 2011

Shutdown or Not, Nonprofits are Off Plan

I can’t help but be impressed with how nonprofits are stepping up to the challenges that the impending state government shutdown is placing upon many. I’m not talking here about what happens if/when the shutdown takes place; that’s where the challenges get to a whole new level. The thing is, right now organizations affected and potentially affected are putting in extra hours and extra effort to do so much that wasn’t in their original work plans for 2011. This includes reading, discussing and learning about what’s going on and how it will affect their agencies, employees and clients. Then planning, more planning and figuring out what to do and how. It’s got to be physically and emotionally exhausting for staff and boards.

I’m appreciating too that the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits and the Nonprofits Assistance Fund, true sector leadership organizations that they are, seem to be everywhere this month keeping us up-to-date with news, developments, planning tools and resources. Staff of both organizations are traveling around the state delivering information and answering questions in a series of Government Shutdown Emergency Briefings. A webinar was also offered this past Monday. I attended along with well over 100 others tuning in. MCN and NAF websites are constantly updated with the latest information. If you’re not already following what they know, I’d encourage you to log in or call either organization.

If what you do for people and communities in Minnesota will be affected by a shutdown, are there other groups or resources that have been helpful to you?

Lois Schmidt, NRS, Willmar

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