OC METRO CALENDAR

  • April 2014
    SuMoTuWeThFrSa
    303112345
    6789101112
    13141516171819
    20212223242526
    27282930123
    45678910
Add an event

COVER STORY
Untitled Page

O.C. nonprofits, continued ...Published: October 01, 2011

Goodwill of Orange County and the Orange County Rescue Mission looked inward to find solutions. Both added new staff positions to address opportunities. To identify new drop-off centers for items sold through Goodwill’s network of retail stores, the nonprofit hired a location specialist. After a decline in 2009, Goodwill is reporting increases in total donations, a turnaround that Nicole Suydam, Goodwill’s vice president of development, attributes to more aggressive community outreach and marketing.
   
“It’s about being more strategic in getting the word out,” she says. “We’ve invested to make sure that the message is strong and widespread.”
   
At the Orange County Rescue Mission, Palmer has created a new executive post on his staff, chief relationship officer. Like many of his nonprofit peers, Palmer, president of the agency since 1991, is seeing a significant shift in what donors want in return. With an annual budget of $16 million and more than 174,000 donors, Palmer says more of his time in recent months has been consumed with meeting donors while trying to run an agency that has experienced a 22 percent spike in demand for food, clothing and medical care in the past 12 months. Palmer’s solution was to hire a specialist whose full-time focus is working directly with donors, as well as helping the rescue mission’s 95 full-time employees and hundreds of volunteers better understand the key importance of relationships with donors and clients alike.
   
“Today’s donors want to be much more engaged than just writing a check,” says Palmer. “But we have a business to run at the same time. I needed to find a way to meet our donors’ needs and, at the same time, serve our clients. So much of what is happening is a new frontier for nonprofits.”
   
Wing Lam, co-founder of Wahoo’s Fish Taco and widely respected for his company’s support of scores of county nonprofits, believes it’s a matter of being creative.
   
“Nonprofits are hurting, no question. In the past, when the economy went sour, it was one or two industries that were hit,” says Lam. “Today, every company and individual is feeling it. But there’s still money out there and people who want to give. Nonprofits just have to be creative to find new revenue streams and donors. We have to work smarter and harder to win those checks.”
   
For Vivian Clecak, Human Options’ first and only executive director in the organization’s 30 years of confronting domestic violence, it’s sticking to the basics: the “blocking-and-tackling” strategies that can’t be replaced by emails and text messages. It’s about getting in front of prospects and sharing the agency’s story and purpose.
   

GO TO PAGE
1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6

10 Questions for Max Gardner
President & CEO, United Way Orange County



GO HERE TO READ THE CURRENT ISSUE OF
OC METRO MAGAZINE ONLINE