The 7 major trends that all Non-Profits face.
.....We can expect no increase in Federal, Provincial or State spending above inflation.
... Because Provincial Governments are in deep financial debt, and because they are required to balance their own budgets each year, limited funds are available. So, it's fair to say that any funding that Non-Profits receive from governments is at best, only to keep up with inflation.
...However, if a Non-Profit is working in a direction that the public is concerned about and politicians are responding too, such as in the treatment of substance abuse, then funding will be made more readily available to those facilities who provide those services.
... AIDS research, treatment and care is a good example of an area that receives consistent financial support from State and Provincial Governments.
...So, what is basically being said is that if a Non-Profit is in tune with the greater over all community need (and some call this a trend, or being in vogue, I call it being in the groove), then financial support is consistently given out by Governments and politicians, so that those areas can be handled effectively, and with results. Thus, Non-Profits should not and can not depend on Governments to fully support their needs, and other alternatives for continued funding needs to be explored, in order for any Non-Profit to survive.
.....Will be quite possibly the Baby Boomers who are soon to be retiring, and it should be noted that these people are the latest educated and most wealthy group of people in American history. With their children soon to be leaving home, they will have more time on their hands to assist as Board Members on active Boards, and through their volunteering combined with their experience and financial support, a huge pool of resources will be accumulated and through network communications, large accomplishments can and will take place that will refurnish our communities.
.....Is the realistic assumption that all Non-Profits will continue to face the inevitable increase of demand on their services. The reason so much demand is place on the Non-Profit is because we as a Society have been depending on them for over 30 years to provide help, and unfortunately, funding is always limited. So areas such as low income housing and job-creation have been partly neglected, and consequently, those social needs will remain high in correlation with consistent increase of demand.
...One obvious example of social need not being met would be the rise of single parent homes, along with the sharp increase of divorce manifesting itself within the family unit. Children too, who are locked in the welfare system due to parental neglect, abuse or abandonment is a concern that out weighs what is available to adequately eradicate this ever veiling problem within our Society. It should be noted, NO child should be ever be Fatherless or Motherless, but yet we have hundreds of thousands of children needing adoption, who often times don't ever get to experience the bond that only a Father or Mother can provide. Here we can see social need quite plainly not being met, but only being faced with increase instead; and even though we as a Society are dealing with substance abuse and the AIDS crisis, we are still falling far behind in the department of social support towards the family as a whole unit.
...Another area that will increase in demand is the higher technical services that target smaller groups of recipients (specifically the aging population), as these people will increase their demand for reliable services that often time requires costly funding. An example would be, hospitals are re-locating their physical re-hab centres to give suburban residents easier access to this important service, and home care nursing is another area that requires sophisticated providers, who can meet the needs of a growing number of recipients in areas that require expertise.
...In short, no matter what the Non-Profit is we can expect an increase in demand yearly that does not always meet what is available in terms of resources to match those needs.
.....This trend is the competitive trend, and in every social community competition is a normal way of life. One can even say it is a natural instinct in all humans to compete with each other at some level, and we do this for various reasons. However, in the Non-Profit arena, competition is highly viewed as to as to who is productive compared to who is not, and most Sponsors would rather have their money going towards Non-Profits that are successful and above board, than to those who are scandalous and/or shy on their performance.
...In other words, in the real world of Non-Profit politics, Sponsors, volunteers and staff members alike, are all looking for and are all wanting to participate in Organizations that are first "respectful", and second who show a healthy financial position in terms of services being provided, with the potential to further develop state-of-the-art programs which result in employment positions that are financially consistent within the open job market. Non-Profits are beyond the days of the Ma and Pa corner store and because of this, competition is highly integrated into the mainstream functions that all Non-Profits must face at one time or another. Simply put, we can say that the NU Foundation is entering into a very competitive area, and in order to be successful we must develop sound financial agendas and show productivity with the resources we have, in order to attract further assistance.
.....Is the computer age, and this technology "has not" been tapped into by the Non-Profit sector as a whole. Yet, the computer era is what will carry any successful Non-Profit into the 21 century. With low investments costs even when we think in terms of training staff, the benefits far exceed what we could imagine when a workable communication network is put into place. By implementing a sound network system of communication technology, we ensure the opportunity for a successful working Non-Profit, which is a must in this computer age.
.....Is the immigration wave of people from all Ethnic backgrounds coming to North America. It is here were we have a diverse group of people who not only can offer their services to the community in a number of ways that are beneficial, but many of them also require assistance themselves (especially in the beginning of their residency) while settling into their new surroundings. For instance, if we have available health programs that would benefit newly arrived immigrants but the people themselves can not read the literature, then extended programs need to be further incorporated to fill in the gaps, to were everybody is part of a working community and no one is left behind.
...Simply put: The first rule for any Non-Profit is, "It belongs to the people, and every voice counts"!!
.....And, this is accountability. While moving into the new century any successful Non-Profit will not be afraid to be accountable for it's decisions, policies, and programs. Consequently, due to mismanagement of public donations in the past, the general consensus now is and has shifted towards being a watchful eye, and rightfully so. So, we are in a new era of open books, and having to be in a position to were we must explain our actions, and we are asked to do this for the purpose to ensure the integrity of the Non-Profit. And finally, I'll take it upon myself to say, "Being that the NU Foundation is the peoples Non-Profit, it is then fair to say that we govern ourselves, and thus are accountable to each other".
.....In conclusion, the seven trends that affect all Non-Profits in one way or another, are definite sure signs of which way any successful Non-Profit should want to operate. If we want to see results then we must be accountable to the people who make the Non-Profit viable and alive. We must be accountable to each other. We must nurture the areas that need assistance and we must also be able to bend with the times, and not demand for Governments to pave the way. Any or all Non-Profits belongs to the people from young to old, from East to West, and through working together by building onto sound agendas, we can accomplish "longevity and great prosperity" just by strength alone.
...That is what the future holds for our children and our future children within the NU Foundation, and because we "all agree" that it takes a community to raise children, we here tonight on the eve of Malcolm X's birthday have taken the first steps towards ensuring a "Solid Foundation" that will uphold it's obligations towards the people it provides services to, as well as to whom, we work along side with to ensure those services are being met.
Information gathered from: Volunteer Vancouver.