Struggling Nonprofits Increasingly Consider Alliances, Collaborations

As nonprofits across the Sacramento region and California struggle to meet rising demand with reduced funding, many are turning to collaborations, partnerships, and mergers, the Sacramento Bee reports.

In the Sacramento area, which boasts some six thousand nonprofit organizations and charities, the recession has caused many to consider ways to collaborate and share resources. "It's the new reality," said Ann Lucas, executive director of the Nonprofit Resource Center. "People are having to find new ways to be efficient and effective with less money, and these alliances are part of that."

Before it aligned itself with the Grace Foundation of Northern California in El Dorado Hills, for example, Ride & Shine, a horseback riding program for individuals with special needs, was considering shutting its doors after almost fifteen years serving the community. And although the Grace Foundation also was feeling the effects of the tough economy, its costs were less onerous. By combining the horse rescue efforts of Grace with Ride & Shine's work with children and adults with disabilities, the two were able to find a healthy mix.

"We're just starting our fourth year, so our program is very new and very small," said Julie McBride, director of programming for Grace. "Ride & Shine had some years behind it and a wonderful reputation, so we're all excited about this [collaboration]. It's a necessity in these times for nonprofits to come together and support each other. We're more powerful when we work together."

Cynthia Hubert. "Struggling Sacramento-Area Nonprofits Team Up to Stay Afloat." Sacramento Bee 01/08/2010.