Thoughtful Non-Profit Leadership
Guiding you through uncertain financial times

Though I personally find the uncertainty overwhelming, I've been impressed by my clients and many other nonprofits and their ability to "pivot" their programs in a short space of time. I worry about so many friends, especially the city dwellers; wondering what comes next. I continue to spend as much time outside as I can. I'm lucky that I can keep working from home, and wanted to share some of what I've been doing, and offer support. Don't underestimate the mental wear and tear on yourself, and find ways to nourish your psyche!
Check out some of my current clients!
Making the most of this time
  I am thrilled to connect with two new clients over the past month: Young People's Project and Nature Linc . I've continued my online presence by holding a Zoom workshop for Hampshire College students called The Money behind the Mission: Understanding Nonprofit Finance , and participating in Ask the Experts hosted by Laura Ewing-Mahoney of Sage Advice. I'm also hosting semi-monthly coffee hours with the Nonprofit Consultants Networks which is a huge win-win!

There are lots of questions around cash flow and alternative budget plans--how should we manage our PPP funds and will they be forgiven? Your budget should be the "road map" to meeting your mission. Given the detours that have been thrown up, do you need to give it a second look? Cash flow can make or break many nonprofits. Do you know your "breaking point" if revenue projections aren't met?Happy to work through some of these perplexing new challenges with you.
Is there a silver lining?
I feel almost embarrassed to ask--is there anything positive about this? But we nonprofit leaders have been handed a unique opportunity. We must be ready for what comes next because our communities will most definitely need us.

When asked how to balance asking for emergency funds and annual appeals, I respond this way: ALL the funds we raise, whether for immediate needs or for supporting our ongoing programs, are critical and equally important. Our donors need to appreciate that our organizations MUST SURVIVE. Whether it's Covid, a hurricane, a shooting, or a bad economy...the nonprofit sector is always here to serve and to provide. Put those spring appeals in context: we're having to divert critical funds RIGHT NOW but we will need those funds again come summer or fall to continue doing what we do every day, every year. As Laura said in our Ask the Expert session, this is an opportunity to accentuate the importance of what we do. Take the time to ensure your community appreciates how you support people in your sphere: before, during and after.
Ellen Sturgis
Night Heron Consulting
12 Canterbury Road Stow MA 01775
Call Us At: 978-460-0883