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Survey finds local non-profits may see financial hardships next season

The Grande Prairie Volunteer Services Bureau has released the results of a survey conducted with members, charities, and non-profits showing nearly half of respondents have lost 25 per cent or more of their income, and a great majority will continue to apply for emergency provincial aid.

According to GPVSB Executive Director Carol-Anne Pasemko, challenges are projected to appear across the sector during Alberta’s relaunch plan after largely being unable to host fundraising initiatives in the spring.

“I think everybody was impacted; like 97 per cent of the ones that we surveyed said they’d had a significant impact on their programs,” says Pasemko.

“Particularly at the start of the spring season, when the organizations were doing their spring fundraisers and those got cancelled and that had a significant negative impact on their economic health right from the get-go.”

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The large majority of responding organizations, roughly 45 in all, indicated they may still require emergency funding from the province to maintain regular operations.

According to the release, 78 per cent of organizations indicated in the results were non-profits and 20 per cent for-profit respondents. The Bureau’s regional sport connection was also noted to have sent in a response to the survey.

Pasemko says there still remains a great deal of concern for organizations to be safe to restart and interact both with their employees and client basis. A select few indicated they had reopened with decreased hours or by appointment only to the public.

“This is a tough situation for the non-profit sector, and I think what’s going to happen is this year, the majority of them are going to be okay because in our non-profit world, we line up grants, we do our fundraisers, we are working a year in advance. It’s next year where we’re really going to see the impact of COVID on our non-profits,” says Pasemko.

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