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Positioning Your Nonprofit Post-COVID-19

Linda Gray, DCL

Certified Business Mentor, SCORE

Never in the history of our country before has the nonprofit industry stepped up to the plate to be one of the new vehicles for CARE Act dollars. Nonprofit organizations that are 501(c)(3) tax exempt entities are in position to receive millions of federal dollars to administer essential services to support community needs and provide economic impact throughout their communities, particularly underrepresented ones.

While these organizations are the necessary entities for administering resources, they now have a larger role to play in the post-COVID-19 world. The opportunities for nonprofit organizations to create affordable housing, workforce and career skills, youth education services, special needs population and veteran services are endless. 

In order for these organizations to create sustainable goals and help build their capacity to serve more effectively in cities and states across America, they must be federal grant-ready. 


So what does it mean to be federal grant-ready? Here are some questions that should be answered and communicated to determine whether your nonprofit organization is in a position to apply, receive, maintain, implement, and be accountable for grant awards:

  1. Do you have a vision, mission, and purpose statement? It is so important to make the vision, mission, and purpose plain and communicated consistently in the community.
  2. Do you have committed board members? Board members should understand and know their roles and responsibilities in providing fiscal oversight of the organization. What grants management plan and processes do you have in place?
  3. Do you have an operating budget in place? Have you established an estimated budget to determine how much your organization has to raise on a consistent basis to continue operating? What about a reserve fund?
  4. Are you reviewing, amending and updating your governing bylaws on a regular basis? What about a conflict of interest policy in place?
  5. Do you have the qualified staff and volunteers in position to implement your funded programs and services?
  6. What is your long-term sustainability plan? Are you creating a social enterprise business model to create an income revenue stream that offers employment opportunities?
  7. Are you engaging small businesses and leveraging the impact of the Banks and Fortune 500 companies in your sustainability plan?

What a great opportunity to serve and make a difference in communities across America!

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