A nonprofit must remain true to its mission. For some, it’s an easy proposition to maintain, even now. If your mission is to feed the homeless, then maybe you run a soup kitchen. If it’s to provide support to low income workers, maybe a food pantry, financial assistance, or transportation benefits is what your organization does.
However, if you’re one of a number of organizations whose mission is to enrich the lives of the public through artistic means, you may be finding the need to shift how you do that to be insurmountable. Boards across the nation are investigating virtual experiences, trying to figure out how to remain viable when, suddenly, any arts group can be a competitor for the time and money of your constituents.
In the race for money, it’s important to remain mindful of the mission behind your nonprofit. Enrichment is more than entertaining. Educating is more than childcare. Artistic excellence isn’t a buzz word to drive sales or audience development.
It needs to be deeper than that, and the groups have to dig down to find a competitive place to do their work. Is it possible there will be groups that don’t survive this pandemic? Yes. It certainly is. But if the whole interaction that organization has had in the past with every patron has been transactional in nature, then the group was probably failing to fulfill its mission in the first place.