Lafayette

Mar 16, 2011 6:53 PM by Melissa Hawkes

Non-Profits Struggle Financially

Non-profits in Acadiana are having a hard time making financial ends meet.
Hearts of Hope Development Director, Stephen Wright, said he sees more and more people come to his office looking for help every year. He says the unfortunate thing is as the demand is growing, funds are decreasing.
"Health care and education are typically the first thing that are hit which are main to entities under our roof," Wright said. "So as far as getting money from the states, that's going to be a cut that hits us hard."
Hearts of Hope only receives a few thousand dollars in grant money from the state each year, He said that money is never guaranteed, which means if they lose it then people will lose out on their services.
He said it could lead to his organizations "not having man resources for the crisis hotline that allows people who need counseling. It will cut back on counseling that we can give to adults and children who are victims of abuse."
Hearts of Hope is just one of 20,000 non-profit organizations in Louisiaana. The main source of funding in Louisiana is through private donations, which is down by about ten percent state-wide.
Philanthropist, Eward Abell, said "I believe you have an obligation to share if you have the ability to do so."
He donates to a number of local charities including the Acadiana Center for the Arts.
Abell said, "I can't give much but I am a believer in supporting organizations that are useful for the community."
Wright says private donors could be the difference in non profits staying afloat.
He said, "my biggest worry is we may have to close our doors. It's an apparent reality unless corporate donations go up or we get state and federal funding, it will happen in the future."

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