A new partnership in Dallas is bringing some much-needed help to hundreds of nonprofits across North Texas.
That's a big deal because a lot of these groups lost volunteers and funding during the pandemic.
“As you know during the pandemic, our nonprofit partners struggled mightily. They lost their volunteers, they lost fundraising opportunities and yet, the community expected more from them. They expected them to serve more families, to serve more meals and to really help pull our community through the pandemic,” said Matthew Randazzo, president and CEO of The Dallas Foundation.
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The foundations stepped in to work with the Catchafire organization to virtually match hundreds of volunteers to help with time-sensitive COVID-19 recovery work.
The online and remote volunteers from around the world have helped North Texas nonprofits save more than $1.4 million to date.
“A lot of nonprofits had to figure out how to pivot and still support the community when we were physical distancing and couldn’t necessarily be safely next to one another,” said Randazzo. It’s been all hands on deck to support our community during the pandemic.”
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For example, a youth organization had to reimagine their sleepaway camp for middle schools girls interested in science, technology, engineering and math.
“Clearly in the middle of a pandemic we’re not sending our kids to sleep away camps. So this organization partnered with Catchafire and their volunteers to really think about how to develop an online component,” Randazzo said.
In another project, volunteers were able to help a nonprofit helping women veteran owned businesses.
AES Literacy Institute, a North Texas nonprofit that helps individuals 17 and older that did not finish high school, was also able to use the manpower and expertise from volunteers to help adults earn their Texas Certificate of High School Equivalency.
Like AES, other nonprofits were able to get free help with graphic design, website, and finance, among other needs.
“So these are a couple of examples of nonprofits that got the expertise that they needed to really pivot their programming and still made this moment during a time of great uncertainty in our community,” said Randazzo.
In 2020, The Dallas Foundation, in partnership with the more than 400 fundholders, invested more than $65 million into the community.
If any other nonprofits still need help with volunteer and other free services, they can email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.