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Archive for January, 2014

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As always, the New Year provides an opportunity to look ahead and envision what we would like to accomplish in the next 12 months. Like every year, we at Volunteers of America aim to help as many people as possible who need our services. But in the year ahead, we likely will need to find new and creative ways to do so with fewer resources.

While the economy continues to show some signs of improvement, we in the nonprofit world still struggle to provide more for less. Budget cuts at the state and federal levels in recent years, as well as a government shutdown in the fall, have left many of our programs across the country with significantly fewer resources going into 2014. In some cases, unfortunately, this has already resulted in layoffs or limits placed on the number of people we can serve.

On top of these existing budget challenges, we are also faced with the lingering possibility that proposed reforms to the federal tax code could result in the reduction or elimination of the charitable income tax deduction. These proposals have been shelved for the time being, but concerns remain that we might eventually experience reductions in private donations at the same time that we’re adjusting our funding strategy to depend less on government and more on the generosity of individual donors.

In this New Year’s period of renewal and rebirth, my goal is that Volunteers of America continues to be as a shining beacon of hope and support to those who need us. To ensure our future success, we cannot be shy or timid about sharing the news of our good works. We must be bold and remove our light from under the metaphorical bushel, not because of a misguided sense of pride, but because that’s what the people we help deserve.

For more information about Volunteers of America’s national network of services and what you can do to support them, please visit www.voa.org.

– By Mike King, National President and CEO, Volunteers of America

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