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GuideStar Blog

From the President's Office, January 2009

Dear Friend:

What's New from the IRS: The 2009 Work Plan for the Nonprofit Sector

So what will the 800+ employees of the IRS who work with exempt organizations be focusing on in 2009? Will your nonprofit end up on their computer screens? Maybe yes, maybe no. But you may need to check out IRS plans for the New Year and get acquainted with some new IRS acronyms, such as ROO and EOCU.

According to the first Annual Report on the Exempt Organizations, published in November 2008, the IRS wants to:

Coming Soon to a Computer and Phone Near You: Free GuideStar Webinars

Last September, GuideStar tested the Webinar waters by offering a free on-line seminar for grantmakers. We repeated the experiment in December with a Webinar for charities. Both events were well attended and well received. Based on their success, we decided to jump in with both feet this year.

Public Relations, Investor Relations, and Marketing Professionals: Do More with Less in Tough Economic Times

Adapted from "Top 10 Strategies for Boosting ROI Despite Shrinking Budgets and Dwindling Resources"

With economic gloom and doom leading to flat corporate giving and grantmaking, it’s critical for nonprofit groups to maintain visibility and, in fact, take extra efforts to remind their stakeholders, customers, and prospects of their missions and staying power.

Although it seems as if the first budgets to get cut in an unstable economy belong to the marketing and public relations departments, in uncertain times it is more important than ever to connect with and strengthen the relationships you’ve built with your customers and prospects. It’s also key to catching the eye of new prospects and new opportunities.

So how do you do more with less—especially when you’re tasked to perform as before or even better, regardless of fewer resources? Start by taking advantage of a whole new world of untapped audiences, new media, and lucrative opportunities that "PR 2.0" offers. Here are some efficient and highly effective strategies and resources for maintaining strong communications and ultimately adding to the bottom line during tough economic times.

Half a Million Nonprofits Could Lose Their Tax Exemptions

Did you know that in May 2010, half a million nonprofits could find themselves stripped of their exempt status? The IRS estimates that that's the number of smaller organizations that have failed to file a Form 990-N.

Weathering the Storm: Ensuring Your Organization's Continued Success through Tough Economic Times

The current global economic crisis is having a significant impact on the nonprofit sector. While mission-driven organizations have seen an increase in demand for their services and predict that the demand will continue to increase, they are also extremely concerned about the philanthropic environment and worry about how they will be able to support an increase in services with an expected decrease in charitable contributions.

How can organizations deal with the strain presented by the current economic situation? Of course, they need to ensure that the organization can remain financially viable during the economic downturn, but they also need to ensure that the organization remains strong and healthy, which means focusing on its people.