COVID-19 AND CHARLES COUNTY NONPROFITS

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The pandemic caused by the coronavirus outbreak is affecting everyone virtually everywhere. In this space we pay tribute to all the charitable organizations that work tirelessly to meet the needs of residents right here in Charles County. Your generosity, good will, and perseverance deserve high accolades from the local community.

For nonprofits, the pandemic’s onset meant having to take swift and effective action to maintain the services to which they are dedicated and also to meet a spate of fresh demands. This was especially challenging when the office had to close down, people had to shift to working from home, and in-person meetings had to be scrubbed. For some groups, canceling long-planned fundraisers put a serious dent in the financial support so critical for their operations.

For nonprofits specializing in direct services, the current situation means figuring out how best to sustain programs already in progress while responding to freshly emerging needs. Flexibility and common sense are the watchwords.

The good news is that the nonprofit sector is notably resilient and ever ready to rise to the occasion. The Charles County Charitable Trust is interested in documenting how this quality is coming into play during the course of the pandemic. Share your story by emailing vmills@charlesnonprofits.org.

(1) If you are a recipient of FY20 grant funds and come up against a problem affecting your use of those funds by June 30 this year, make haste to let us know. Email spetroff@charlesnonprofits.org or leave a message at 301-934-3711.

(2) If you plan to file a grant application for FY21, the deadline remains April 10. In the rare event of inability to submit it online, let us know. We will weigh suitable alternatives. Again, email spetroff@charlesnonprofits.org or leave a message at 301-934-3711.

(3) By now you are monitoring sources of information about the coronavirus and its effects. If you haven’t, visit the State of Maryland website, Maryland.gov. It regularly provides an update of pandemic-related strategies affecting businesses and nonprofits.

(4) Maryland Nonprofits, the Maryland Philanthropic Network, and United Way of Central Maryland have banded together to recommend seven high-priority steps that the State should take to preserve the safety net provided by nonprofits during this human and economic crisis. You can review the letter at marylandnonprofits.org at: https://www.marylandnonprofits.org/wp-content/uploads/MANO.MPN_.UWCM-Letter-to-Maryland-Leadership-COVID-19.pdf.

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