Nonprofit organizations collectively represent the “best of America” in that they provide communal support for countless causes and initiatives, and getting involved with these entities is both valiant and admirable. That said, to ensure your support is best utilized, it is important to have a comprehensive understanding of how nonprofits impact the world–specifically local communities, where charitable work is often crucial.
Almost every person in the world benefits from nonprofit work, whether they realize it or not. In small communities, this impact is easily seen and felt as it is embodied by friends, family members, neighbors, and institutions. Local nonprofit benefactors are able to observe their support at work through emergency personnel, charitable events, and improvements to community cornerstones such as libraries or shelters.
While these benefits are undeniably valuable, it is also important to consider the economic impact of local nonprofits, which is often overlooked. Contrary to popular belief, nonprofits are more than just charitable resources; they “play a fundamental role in creating more equitable and thriving communities.”
Writing for Forbes, Lara Zumdahl observes that, “in every state, nonprofits are high-impact employers” that benefit the US economy via increased job opportunity. Zumdahl’s nonprofit organization, New Moms, has helped advance the national conversation surrounding nonprofit employee compensation, making a bold decision in 2016 to pay their employees no less than $15 per hour. In turn, such steps have helped create key developments in nonprofit economic leadership. Those nonprofit leaders following this example have found a healthy balance between external community support and internal employee stability–the kind of harmony that courts economic viability by means of empathy and fostered trust.
Put simply, local nonprofit activity is invaluable for small communities; it carries on a longstanding, but timelessly relevant concept: coming together to benefit a greater good. Nonprofit efforts inevitably unify communities–usually through mutual involvement–and they can quickly become a catalyst for noticeable positive change. At a local level, nonprofit workers are better equipped to spread their influence by example alone, reflecting the type of ambition that helps redefine a community’s culture for the better.