Now we know – for sure! After years of trying to persuade folks that nonprofits are “more than charity,” we now have the data to prove it. A new study, reported by our friends at CEDIK at the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, confirms the employment and economic importance of our sector. The study found that one in nine Kentuckians is employed by a nonprofit and that our sector is the third largest workforce in the state – behind only government and manufacturing. The sector’s $22.6 billion in expenditures last year contributed significantly to Kentucky’s economy.
But with this good news also comes some caution as the report shows these nearly $23 billion of expenditures in 2012 were relatively flat as the demand for services is increasing and many sources of funding is decreasing. What we are hearing from many of you is a fragile effort to continue meeting community needs with fewer resources.
This new data and our upcoming Kentucky Gives Day on April 9 provide our nonprofit community with important opportunities to educate Kentuckians and engage them in our work. I hope you will join KNN in sharing this new data and our challenges with your board, donors, local paper and more – let’s shout it from the roof tops. We’ll be posting infographics via social media (like the one below) and encourage you to help us spread the word about the sector’s importance and the support we need to best serve Kentucky communities.
I hope your organization will also choose to participate in KY Gives Day to raise dollars and awareness of the important work of your organization. While the deadline to participate is a few weeks away, KNN is providing support and information for participating charities NOW. We want to provide you with as many tools as possible to make April 9 a successful day for everyone!
These are two easy opportunities that will advance our sector – and your organization. It’s an exciting time to serve as your state association and we are grateful for each of you – especially our KNN members. As always, please contact us with your ideas or questions.