I’ve mentioned the Monday spaghetti dinner. We’re a 100%-volunteer organization that’s fed the homeless and working poor for the past sixteen years. We rely on donations to keep going. Every December our local newspapers highlight different non-profits and collect donations on their behalf. Last year I requested an application but there was a mix-up on my end and we missed the deadline. When I bought my 2008 planner, I put sticky notes and reminders in it to keep me on track with this year’s application process. I was determined to get Grant Avenue Street Reach into that program so we’d receive funding.
Street Reach is registered as a non-profit but because our gross receipts are so low, we don’t have to file with the IRS which means we don’t have formal financial records. We use whatever money we have to buy what we can (and rely on food donations for the rest). Yesterday morning I made last-ditch attempts to pull together enough financial information (990-N filing status, accounts receivable statements from our food service sources) to satisfy the Application Gods. Well, the Application Gods told me it wasn’t enough, that we wouldn’t even get an application because we didn’t pass the screening process.
I was very upset.
But I pulled myself together and went downtown to help out. We’d finished serving the meal and were cleaning up the kitchen when a soft-spoken man arrived. He told me he was with a local group that worked to help non-profits get funding. (huh?) He said they’d helped us last year and had intended to contact us again but hadn’t because of an oversight.
Then he said, “Our group is the Denver Cycle Sluts and we’d like to give you all the money we make at Bingo this Friday night.”
That’s right, friends. The corporate machine couldn’t help our tiny non-profit feed hungry people but a bunch of drag queens designated Grant Avenue Street Reach their charity of the month (and did so last year, too) and will raise money to help us out.