Tuesday, May 3, 2011

AtWork! Addresses Funding Cuts

In February of 2011 AtWork!’s board of directors made the decision that the agency cannot continue to provide services for “free” and remain financially stable long-term. In the past, AtWork! has provided over 1500 hours of service per month (about $20,000 worth of services) for which we were not reimbursed by any funding source. In the past, United Way, commercial revenues, and fundraised dollars allowed us to provide increased services. United Way funds were cut another 15%, which means we are currently receiving 70% less UW funding than in the past. The large commercial contract we lost brought in $300,000 per year, and fundraising last year was only 67% of budget.

Over the next several months, clients who are receiving more services than we are paid to provide will be meeting with staff to develop plans to reduce services. We’ll be making suggestions and referrals to other sources for families who need support and respite. We are also investigating private pay options for individuals and families who can afford to pay for their own support. And we are working on efficiencies to continue to improve on best practices and our cost/benefit ratio. We are expanding our use of volunteers and “natural supports”. We brought together a group of 5 other providers of supported employment we are calling “The Collaborative”. We are sharing expertise, job development leads, and community connections to place 17 people who have the most complex support needs. We have placed 2 people in the first 2 months since launching this collaboration. We are also engaged with 13 other nonprofits in a marketing consortium called CONNECT that we expect will bring significant new commercial opportunities to AtWork! over the next 18 months to 2 years.

posted by AtWork! at


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