Billings nonprofits continue to struggle to raise funds amid pandemic


BILLINGS – Billings nonprofits have yet to change the way they deliver services and fundraisers because of Covid.

“We have been monitoring Covid numbers for months. We never really stopped watching them. We started to see them climbing again and once we saw that the seven day average was about the same place it was in October of last year, we knew we probably needed to make a change. So we decided to cancel our in-person event and put everything online, ”said Cameron Cook, Director of Development for St. Vincent de Paul.

Saint-Vincent-de-Paul is one of the largest groups in the region dedicated to helping the homeless.

The organization hopes to raise around $ 50,000 with its big October fundraiser this year, but organizers fear that an online fundraiser will make less money.

“We don’t really know how online is going to affect our fundraising. It’s kind of uncharted territory for us and a lot of other nonprofits, ”Cook said.

The Boys and Girls Clubs of Yellowstone County also rely on major fundraising events. Despite a limited-capacity in-person event in July, the future of its fundraising events remains uncertain.

“This situation doesn’t seem to want to go away, so it’s like serving children every day. We’re trying to figure out what it’s going to look like. What can we do to effectively engage with our great donors and all the people who support what we do here with the children, but how do we do it safely? And trying to find that balance, that mix, ”said Brain Dennis, group chairman and CEO.

For many nonprofits, these large gatherings are often their biggest source of income, and they count on them to keep going.

A lack of money usually affects the people who depend on these non-profit organizations.

“I like being a community source for them. We can have a coffee and sit down, but just a place where I want people to feel comfortable, a non-judgmental zone and I hope they can find a few things, ”said Janice Krueger, volunteer at St. Vincent De Paul.

The Saint-Vincent-de-Paul online fundraiser will take place on October 11. Click here to learn how to donate.

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