Nonprofits react to virus impacts

By Tara Jones -

LIMA — Area nonprofits are feeling the impact both financially and in volunteers as a result of the novel coronavirus but are managing to get by and maintain a positive outlook.

Randy Kimpel, director of Our Daily Bread, said they haven’t seen much of a drop in resources with the help of some larger donations from different avenues.

“We’re doing a kind of cut-down version of our services,” Kimpel described. “We’re not just a place to eat, we’re a place for shelter, for a home during the day. While everything else closed, we tried to keep things open. We did end up having to shut the dining room down because people weren’t listening to social distancing guidelines, so we are to-go only now.”

Our Daily Bread is still able to offer its other services like showers and clothing, but more on a requested basis.

Habitat for Humanity Lima Area, on the other hand, has turned to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program. The loan will help keep its three full-time employees working and keep forward progress on its projects.

“We’re going to be funded on Thursday. We’ve done the projections and we’re happy about that, but we know we need to make plans beyond that as well,” said executive director Bruce Hilty. “There’s too much uncertainty as to what needs to be done. We’re anxious to return to normal, but we have to be pragmatic about that. We can’t pretend we don’t know and not think about down the road.”

Hilty said the coronavirus impact has put them behind about a month in terms of finishing its ongoing construction in Elida and the search to find its next family for the next project in Delphos.

Area churches are also feeling the impact as they are unable to gather. However, Mary Kay Durliat, business manager for SS. Peter & Paul Church in Ottawa, said they are focusing on the positives.

“The church relies on the generosity of its people — that’s the main source of income,” she said. “Our pastor, Father Matt Jozefiak, is very pleased with how the parishioners are trying to respond during a difficult time.”

Hilty reiterated that at the heart of who they are, nonprofits are meant to help get people through difficult times, so they will do their best to keep fighting.

“Now’s the time for optimism more than anything,” Hilty said. “People need to know that those of us who do this kind of work, the nonprofits, we’re still going to be needed, we still need to move forward and we believe this is a way for us to unite and really take hold.”

By Tara Jones

Reach Tara Jones at 567-242-0511.

Reach Tara Jones at 567-242-0511.

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