Local nonprofit organizations discuss how COVID-19 has impacted fundraising efforts

Local News

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – Local nonprofit organizations make adjustments to fundraising efforts amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

For many local nonprofits fundraisers are events that are critical for success.

“Most of us have one main event each year and then we’ll have small events throughout the year but for Team of Mercy our main event is usually in May,” said Christina Crist, Team of Mercy executive director.

Due to social distancing guidelines Team of Mercy, an organization that helps those impacted by suicide, rescheduled its Surviving the Color fundraiser for July 11th.

Crist says in addition to scheduling changes her organization is also seeing an impact on sponsorships.

“Team of Mercy has seen a lost of $15,000 to $20,000 to where we were at last year,” Crist said.

For over a decade, the Wabash Valley Breast Cancer Survivors group has hosted a Paint the Town Pink carnation sale in May, with profits helping women pay for mammograms and resources for breast cancer patients.

Due to the pandemic, this year the event that raises thousands won’t happen.

“Last year we went to the Girl Scout building which was a wonderful place for our headquarters and it’s closed through May. We have the boys football team from ISU, usually around 60 of them cut off all the flowers and they aren’t here this year,” said Coral Cochran, Wabash Valley Breast Cancer Survivors group.

Despite the difficulties caused by the virus, some have found ways to put on fundraisers.

Volunteers with the National M.S. Society say they moved to virtual options for their mid-April Walk M.S. event.

“By doing it virtually I had people that walked in Florida, Indianapolis, Carmel, Terre Haute,” said Pam Grimes, volunteer with National M.S. Society.

Grimes says even with the event moving forward online, fundraising has taken a hit.

“I’ve been very fortunate with a lot of great donations from people but I am down from what I would’ve gotten last year,” Grimes said.

Non-profit leaders ask that the community donate when they can to assist organizations in need.

“If you have extra, go out and seek our local events that are pushed back and are cancelled and consider donating those dollars,” Crist said.

For more information on Team of Mercy: https://www.teamofmercy.com/

For more information on the National M.S. Society: https://www.nationalmssociety.org/

If you would like to donate to the Wabash Valley Breast Cancer Survivors group, donations can be sent to: WVBCS at First Financial Bank, PO Box 540. Terre Haute, IN 47808, c/o Beverly Christopher.

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