Giving Compass' Take:

• Treatment and recovery organizations that help individuals experiencing drug and alcohol addiction need support more than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

• How are you adapting your charitable giving strategy to meet the needs of vulnerable organizations? 

• Read how funders can help nonprofits weather coronavirus. 

For anyone seeking help escaping drugs or alcohol, charities are a lifeline. But coronavirus has turned this network of support upside down. In this case study, Oliver Standing from Collective Voice talks to funders about what philanthropists can do to help.

The treatment and recovery fields face some fundamental dilemmas. How do we support people’s recovery whilst maintaining social distancing? What do we do when isolation is a trigger for someone’s drug use? How best can we ensure a continuity of care when nothing is running like normal?

The good news is that everyone in this dedicated, intelligent sector is finding ways to innovate, and keep caring for the people who rely on us. But behind the frontline, underlying questions remain.

Our concern is shared by the Lankelly Chase Foundation, who fund projects helping people with multiple and complex needs including substance misuse. As the crisis develops, they’ve been reassuring charities, amending their processes, and helping the sector to mitigate against the impacts of the pandemic.

How funders can help 

  1. Start talking Reassure the charities you fund that you are there to support them.
  2. Adapt your processes where necessary Think about how charities may be struggling to meet deadlines, or to report on agreed outcomes in the normal ways. Consider reviewing the terms of your current funding or commissioning agreements, extending timescales where necessary.
  3. If possible, look at offering additional financial support Many organisations will be under new and unforeseen pressures and will be facing additional costs (for instance the purchase of PPE, or the extension of people’s working hours as they cover for sick colleagues). Consider providing extra and immediate funding, to help with these problems.
  4. Look at the long term Coronavirus will have far-reaching consequences for the treatment and recovery sector. Now is a good time to think about what that impact may be.

Read the full article about supporting organizations during COVID-19 by Oliver Standing at NPC.