June 15, 2020 | Video
For nonprofits, the ultimate goal is to find sustainable ways of making a difference while creating as many streams of revenue as possible to support your cause. In addition to charitable donations and classic fundraising, it is important to find strategic partners that can offer you additional opportunities for income. One of Eide Bailly’s Resourcefullness Award winners—Volunteers of America, Utah (VOA)—did just that with their job-training program for homeless youth, Maud’s Café.
Maud’s Café is an 8-12 week program where homeless youth work to gain hands-on job experience. They learn how to provide customer service, obtain their food handler’s permit, create a resume and practice other valuable skills that can help them in the real world. The café has become an ongoing source of revenue for VOA in addition to providing a way for young adults to exit homelessness. Another added benefit to the program is that every at-risk youth who becomes self-reliant will save the organization money and resources in the future.
Utah Resourcefullness Award 2019 Recipient – Volunteers of America | Maud’s Café
Creating a Win-Win Relationship
Maud’s Café is located within ArtSpace, a VOA partner nonprofit that looks to provide affordable housing and commercial spaces as part of their mission to revitalize Salt Lake City’s industrial westside.
ArtSpace approached VOA with the idea to provide them a rent-free retail space within their facility in order to create a business that would benefit both organizations. By hosting Maud’s Café, ArtSpace can provide a unique dining experience for its other building tenants. In turn, VOA is providing vital education and life skills to homeless youth through the use of their volunteers who train and work alongside the young café employees, saving on overhead costs while generating sustainable revenue for their organization. With both organizations experiencing benefits from their agreement, each are getting closer to achieving their organization’s goals.
Finding that synergistic balance between aiding your cause, generating sustainable revenue and benefiting your partner organization is a challenge, but it can be the difference between struggling and succeeding. Maybe your plan will look different than Maud’s Café, but you can always be looking for ways to set your fundraising partners up for success.
What partners do you have that can mutually benefit from your organization’s goal? Think outside the box and create something where all parties involved can find sustainability. Benchmarking and financial modeling can help you expose areas of weakness to work on, which can be used to form better partnerships. Identifying and analyzing metrics that are important to your operation and comparing them to those in your industry will aid you in setting realistic goals.
Has your organization demonstrated resourcefulness in their sustainability efforts?
Apply for our 2020 Eide Bailly Resourcefullness Awards!
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