The Value of Nonprofit Associations

Posted by Christina K. Bell

I recently attended the Delaware Association of Nonprofit Agencies (DANA) annual membership meeting. During opening remarks a quickly stated fact caught my attention. DANA’s current membership only represents one-third of the state’s domestic nonprofits, even after membership grew 71% over the past year. I tried to think of why 2 out of 3 nonprofits would choose not to participate in an organization whose mission is to strengthen and improve Delaware’s nonprofit sector. My only conclusion was that some nonprofits were still unfamiliar with DANA or unsure how DANA could aid their organization. As a result, I’d like to highlight three of what I feel are the most important benefits DANA has to offer:

Advocacy – DANA serves as an advocate for Delaware nonprofits within Delaware’s federal, state and local governments by actively working to increase charitable giving. DANA constantly uses the input of their members to determine their needs and struggles. Want to be heard? DANA can help.

Programs – Throughout the year DANA offers numerous programs and events designed to aid the professional development of nonprofit executives, their boards and employees. As a bonus, these programs and events give the nonprofit community a chance to network and gain invaluable knowledge of what’s working for other nonprofits and what’s not. Want to meet other nonprofits and learn their best practices? DANA’s the place for you.

Information – In addition to receiving discounts on all DANA publications, workshops and conferences designed to enrich and benefit your organization, DANA has a committed staff that is extremely knowledgeable in the nonprofit area. Have a question, need a statistic, want to know how your organization compares against other nonprofit organizations? DANA’s the place to go.

Delaware nonprofits, like all nonprofits nationwide, have seen a need for their services rise during these economic times and have been expected to fulfill these needs on less and less funding. Now is the time to be heard, learn what works best for other nonprofits and gain access to information that can aid your organization in making knowledgeable, well-analyzed and confident decisions.

If you are not currently a member of your local Nonprofit Association, I would encourage you to visit their website to learn how being a member can benefit.  As for our Delaware Nonprofits, please visit DANA’s website to learn several other benefits of DANA, how to become a member, and to see a listing of their current members.

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