Sustain all nonprofits

Updated February 26, 2021

Sustaining the nonprofit sector

Like many industries, the nonprofit sector continues to face an unprecedented set of challenges in the face of COVID-19. Nonprofits are critical employers and economic drivers in our communities. With 12.3 million paid workers, the nonprofit sector is the third largest industry workforce in the American economy. Even organizations that are not directly responding to COVID-19 are facing growing difficulties and need help to make it through the pandemic.

  • Declining revenue streams
    As the pandemic wears on, organizations have had to continue to curtail their regular in-person fundraising efforts, as well as revenue-generating programs such as camps, classes, clinics, performances, admissions and more. In addition, there is fear that donations may shrink as unemployment levels rise and economic insecurity takes hold.
    These cuts could have a severe impact on nonprofits at a time when many of them are also struggling to meet growing need for their programs. Similar to restaurants, retail and other small businesses, many small nonprofits may not survive if the pandemic continues to impact operations for an extended period.
  • Volunteer shortages and a diminished workforce
    Nonprofits that rely on volunteer engagement are facing a shortage of workers as people continue to stay home and avoid groups for safety. While many nonprofits are trying to convert, where possible, to a remote volunteer and employee workforce, many nonprofits are struggling with the technology resources to do so effectively.

National Council of Nonprofits, “2019 Nonprofit Employment Report.”


How to help

Continue to contribute—and consider increasing your support—to any of your favorite nonprofits. Giving unrestricted support to nonprofits will allow them to use funds on their most mission-critical priorities, and will demonstrate your trust in them during a difficult time. The most important point is not to wait! Nearly every charity is feeling the negative effects of COVID-19—making sustained donor support more important than ever.