Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Sponsoring the arts and more


(Sorry to steal your thunder, Ariel, but I couldn't resist posting this!)

PLEASE click on the link above. It should take you to the YouTube version of a public service announcement from Americans For the Arts and other fine art-sponsoring organizations and foundations. My roommates Ariel, Rachel, and I saw this PSA on public TV after the BYU devotional and we LOVED IT! Not only is it absolutely hilarious, but they make a great mock up of normal cereal ads, and they actually got us to check out their website- now that's good marketing.

Now here comes the plug. As you may know, this semester nearly all of my classes are dedicated to my Nonprofit Management minor and I want to impart of some of my little tiny blobs of wisdom that I assume are floating around upstairs. First of all, nonprofit organizations operate on a foundation that is fundamentally different from organizations in the for-profit business world. Their bottom line is not revenue, it is lives touched. They work very hard in order to make their goods or services available to as many people as possible, but for this to happen, they need funding. Think about it, how could the Boys and Girls Club, for example, possibly be able to maintain their facilities, provide computers, sports equipment, and other materials to the kids they serve, as well as sponsor free events for families and pay their staff while still only charging a few dollars per year for kids to come and spend hours there everyday?! Unless you want to hugely jack up the annual fees for the kids, thereby making it so that many of them could not afford to go, it is NOT possible without outside funding. This includes funding from the government (which is justified because most nonprofits provide a public service that the government cannot but should, so the nonprofit sector is actually already doing the federal government a huge favor by working on behalf of the people in their place), corporate or foundation grants, and private donations.

Now, in case you are unaware, the economy is a bit iffy at the moment. And unfortunatley, this is really scaring the nonprofits who are expecting donations and grant monies (not to mention federal funding from our hurting government) to be on the huge decline. If this gets bad enough, many nonprofits will have to close their doors. The tragic truth is that they cannot give their public services without the necessary economic means. In this time of struggles, please do not forget your local and national nonprofits that have touched your life and that you feel should be helped to remain in existence. GM does not deserve your money for their bad business practices, but I think that Americans for the Arts, for one, does deserve to be sponsored for the good work that they do which may now be jeopardized because of the declining availability of grants.

I encourage you to think about who you can help and where you want to put your voice in the form of your donated dollars. Perhaps a local hospital that is a nonprofit or the Red Cross or a religious institution or maybe international education organizations or human rights groups. What do you care about and how do you show it? Maybe you cannot give your money, but you can give your time. I recently discussed how I appreciated President Obama's call for an increase in voluntarism. I still believe it. Make a difference and don't be afraid to give! Just bring a reusable water bottle with you instead of getting a drink from the vending machine everyday for one month and, bingo, there's 50 bucks for Amnesty International. In a time when money may be becoming tight, now is when we should be putting our money where our mouths are.


Ariel said...

ha ha I LOVE this post and the picture of that kid is just hilarious!

kambam said...

OH MY GOSH. This is hilarious. I just watched it like four times in a row. And I'm now going to tell everyone I know.

Raisin Brahms!