Nonprofits turning to PPP funds to keep offering Hoosiers essential services

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. –Hoosiers who rely on help from nonprofits say these organizations are needed more than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic, but like any other business during this time they’re struggling to keep money coming in. 

Thankfully, a new round of funding from the Small Business Relief program is coming.

The Paycheck Protection Program, also known as PPP funds, helps businesses and nonprofits keep their workforce employed during the coronavirus pandemic.

“For 8 weeks we can cover all those salaries and we don’t have to worry about it. That assumes on the other side of 8 weeks everything gets back to normal,” Damien Center President and CEO Alan Witchey said.

The Damien Center provides services to more than 25 percent of all individuals living with HIV in the state. They’re a nonprofit struggling during the pandemic.

Witchey said without the loan money they would’ve had to lay off most of their staff and cut back on services.

“The difference between these loans and not having these loans is the difference between many of our safety net services existing or closing down forever,” Witchey explained.

The center is considered two nonprofits. There is the clinic side and the agency side.

Witchey said money from one of the PPP loans has come through. They’ve been approved for another round of funding but are still waiting.

The same goes for Keep Indianapolis Beautiful. Their loan was approved after SBA said they had run out of funds in the first round.

President and CEO Jeremy Kranowitz is eager for the next round of funding to be issued.

“All of my nonprofit colleagues everywhere and small businesses are not traded on the stock exchange, so we have no other access to capital they way some of these bigger businesses do,” Kranowitz explained.

Both Witchey and Kranowitz turned to their banks to help fill out the PPP application.

They’re thankful to be approved but know billions of dollars doesn’t go a long way when every small business and nonprofit is struggling.

“It’s so critical that these kinds of programs help nonprofits like the Damien Center survive because there is going to be great need on the other side of this, the economic side. We need the safety of services to survive,” Witchey said.

The Damien Center is still open for business. For information click here.

Almost all Keep Indianapolis Beautiful events have been canceled. This Saturday, they are hosting their first ever “Virtual Great Indy Cleanup”. They’re encouraging Hoosiers to go outside and pick up litter in their neighborhoods.

For more information click here.

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