Thursday, February 19, 2009
Here is another story on the effect of the economic downturn on the nonprofit sector. This time, we take a look at faith-based charities.
Today's Washington Post is reporting that faith based charities are facing unprecedented cutbacks from one of their biggest funders: the government. These cutbacks will naturally affect the charities' ability to maintain the wide array of private social services they currently provide to the nation's sick, elderly and poor.
The current economic downturn has led local and state government agencies across the nation to reduce contracts and grants or delay payments to the groups. This, in turn, has forced many groups to eliminate programs and lay off staff. For example, reports the Post, in the Washington, D.C., area, faith-based charities such as Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington and the Salvation Army are freezing job vacancies, postponing initiatives, and rallying their members to dig deeper into their pockets.
Government leaders, meanwhile, are urging the charities to increase their fundraising. Yet, the current economic situation is causing deep cuts in private giving.
The road ahead surely looks bleak for faith-based charities.