March 22, 2022
Employers must promote a culture of mental health, local experts say
by Shari Finnell, editor/writer, Not-for-profit News

Whether COVID-19 rates continue to decline or experience periodic surges, the need to proactively implement comprehensive mental health solutions in the workplace will persist in the coming years, according to local mental health experts.

Employers must recognize the importance of addressing mental health among their employees in the wake of job losses, occupational stress caused by long work hours, and illness and death, said Kimble L. Richardson, a licensed mental health counselor and manager of business development for Community Health Network, Behavioral Health.

“Many people are still a bit traumatized by what happened,” said Richardson, who led emergency response efforts throughout Marion County and surrounding counties as the coordinator of the Resilience and Emotional Support Team (REST). “We initially had to put our emotions on the back burner so that we could just make it through. We need to encourage people to have discussions about mental health being important. It will continue to be important, hopefully ad infinitum, but especially at an intense level for the next several years.”
Jennifer Stansbury Miller, program manager of the Be Well Crisis Helpline, which was launched by Mental Health of America (MHAI) in partnership with the state of Indiana’s Family Social Services and Administration, said that there are no immediate plans to discontinue the helpline, which was implemented in response to the pandemic.

As of March 16, the helpline, which can be accessed by dialing 211, had received 34,561 calls since July of 2020, when it was introduced, and continues to average a significant number of calls daily. During February of 2021, the center received 1,713 calls. In February of 2022, they fielded more than 2,000 calls — an increase of 20.66 percent, Stansbury Miller said.
The spike in numbers can be attributed to numerous reasons, including word-of-mouth about the helpline, increasing awareness or a gap in mental health providers throughout the state, Stansbury Miller said.

“What we have seen overall in the profession is an increase in need for mental health solutions,” Stansbury Miller said. “And when you look at mental health, by definition, it’s emotional and psychological well-being. It's not necessarily a mental illness. Somebody could just be having a bad day and still need support.”

Dashboard reports help teams analyze results
by Mike Staton

Data, data, data. Nonprofits and for-profits alike have more data than ever to track, understand and utilize in carrying out their goals. It’s easy to quickly become overwhelmed.

To help get the process started, consider creating dashboards.

Dashboards are short (normally one page) graphical representations of data that can provide the key measurements to make informed decisions. They can show program results, financial results, or any other data that needs to be communicated to a group, and they can be helpful internally for staff uses as well as higher level use by a board of directors or finance committee.

One way to use a financial dashboard like the one shown above is to include it as the cover page in the financial packet when sending monthly financial statements to your finance committee. Dashboards are relatively quick to update once they are created, and they can accomplish the following:

  1. Easier to understand for those that are not experienced in reading financial statements. Many members of your board of directors and finance committee may not fully understand how to read financial statements. A dashboard provides them the opportunity to see trends and benchmarks that they would otherwise miss.
  2. Quicker to understand than the full financial statements.

The impact of IT on employee retention
by Cody Lents, partner and customer steward, COVI, Inc. 
As business leaders, we have a lot on our plates to accommodate a new worldview and attract the next generation of talent. Decent pay and a job are no longer enough to lure prospective employees, at least not the ones we want. Businesses must stay informed and honestly care about our people and the issues they face daily. To retain our employees, we must guide them to a better future at home and work.

The future of IT is more than just using technology to automate, streamline, and manage operations as much as possible. It’s aligning it to enhance the employee and customer experience, increasing internal cultural, and external delivery demands. The problem is that the more tech we use, the more tech we must end up managing. This requires expensive skill sets and nuanced management skills. Leaders have been quick to adopt expensive skill sets; however, quality management is lacking.

Few companies are equipped with the technology to accommodate both the older and younger generations. Millennials will make up about 75% of the workforce by 2025. Gen Z has spent most of their lives with fast and efficient internet access, along with smart and portable devices that are constantly connecting each other to the world at large. 91% of Gen Z employees say the company’s technological sophistication impacts their decision to work there. 10% of employees (no matter the generation) have walked away from a job due to technological frustrations. And the complication doesn’t end with office tech. After all, 37% of millennials say working with multiple devices is challenging and stressful, and they don’t want to switch from a computer or phone for work and life activities.

It's true that the older the generation — the less likely they are to adapt to ever-changing technology. There is a common stereotype that veteran employees resist technology and new workflows because it will require too much stress and a departure from the way they’ve been operating for decades. In reality, many of these people have seen several changes.

The YMCA of Greater Indianapolis has hired Michael C. Farris Jr. as senior vice president of operations and chief operating officer. Farris previously served as senior director for diversity and inclusion at YMCA of the USA in Chicago. — Inside Indiana Business
The Indiana Commission for Higher Education has hired Chris Lowery as commissioner for higher education. Lowery previously was senior vice president of workforce, careers and adult strategy at Ivy Tech Community College. — Inside Indiana Business
The Arc of Indiana Master Trust has hired Sarah Geis as assistant trust director. Geis previously served as central area supervisor for the Autism Society of Indiana.
The Arc of Indiana has hired Kat Chappell as advocacy manager for The Arc Advocacy Network. Chappell previously served as program manager for the Governor's Council for People with Disabilities.
The Excel Center® , Goodwill's adult school, has hired Rachel Zaudtke as school director. Zaudtke previously was a lead teacher for Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana.
The Central Indiana Land Trust has promoted Jamison Hutchins to stewardship director. Hutchins previously was stewardship manager. — Inside Indiana Business
Charles A. Tindley Accelerated Schools has received a $21,000 grant from the Indiana Department of Health SNAP Education program. The program, which is designed to help individuals and families grow and cook healthier meals at home, will support the creation of a garden and greenhouse. Read more

Indiana nonprofits implement creative solutions around mergers that build upon their combined strengths while streamlining administrative, fundraising and other resources. The organizations include the Muncie Symphony Orchestra and Marion Philharmonic Orchestra, which will become Orchestra Indiana, and three performing art groups in Bloomington. Read more

The Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation has awarded Visually Impaired Preschool Services a $50,000 grant to help the development of a sensory garden at the new Simon & Estelle Knoble VIPS Family Resource Center. Read more

The amount of SNAP benefits a household receives will undergo changes beginning in June 2022, according to the USDA. Funding will return to pre-pandemic levels, based on eligibility factors, including household size, income and allowable deductions. Read more

The Indianapolis African American Quality of Life Initiative is accepting applications from organizations seeking grant money. The initiative, which is funded with $100 million from the Lilly Endowment Inc., will distribute grants in August. Read more

Gov. Eric Holcomb has announced that the Indiana School for the Deaf, which has been located at 1200 E. 42nd St., near the Indiana State Fairgrounds, since 1911, will move to the campus of the Indiana School for the Blind and Visually Impaired on North College Avenue at East 75th Street. Read more

Hamilton County Leadership Academy will start accepting applications for its 2023 class on March 30. The 10-month program connects participants to their communities, giving them a deeper understanding of Hamilton County. Applications due May 31. Apply
No nonprofit left behind: How small organizations can capitalize on new trends in fundraising mini virtual conference on March 30 from 1-3:15 p.m. Larger nonprofits are seeing great success from crypto giving and new stewardship tactics. How can small nonprofits take advantage of these innovations? Presented by Network For Good. Cost: Free. Register

Beyond accessibility — Understanding language inclusion online event. on March 31 at noon. A panel discussion exploring language, culture, and literacy when it comes to building an inclusive workplace environment. Presented by LUNA Language Services. Cost: Free. Register

Starting a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization on April 9 from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at Central Library, 40 E. St. Clair St. Assess whether starting a nonprofit is right for you. Learn what a nonprofit organization is and the steps required to start one. Cost: Free. Register

Three-week virtual leadership course starting on April 12. Topics include tapping into intrinsic motivation, aligning teams, and using a strength-based approach. Presented by Fostering Engagement. Cost: $199. Use the code ENGAGE for discount. Register

The beginner’s guide to grant writing workshop on April 13 and May 11 from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at Purdue Extension Marion County, Discovery Hall, Suite 201. Learn how to submit grant proposals confidently. Cost: $195 (includes materials and lunch). Presented by Purdue Extension Community Development. Register

Planning effective programs on April 16 from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the Central Library, 40 E. St. Clair St. Discover the main components of a solid program plan that allows your organization to provide quality services to your community. Presented by Indianapolis Public Library. Cost: Free. Register

Successful grant proposals on April 16 from 1:30 p.m.-4 p.m. at the Central Library, 40 E. St. Clair St. In this workshop, you’ll learn about the grant application process and assess whether your organization is ready to apply for grants. Presented by Indianapolis Public Library. Cost: Free. Register
Children’s Bureau and Families First needs volunteers at its rebranding celebration on April 21 at the Crane Bay Event Center, 551 W. Merrill St. Volunteers will be in charge of directing the audience and disseminating information during the name unveiling event. Registration
Learn what your organization needs to prioritize to foster an environment where everyone feels empowered and supported.
The Richard King Mellon Foundation and McCune Foundation are directing $75,000 to organizations to cover three-month sabbaticals for their leaders facing burnout and to support teams during their absences.
Our sponsor marketplace serves to further connect our readers with our advertisers who are focused on serving nonprofits. To learn about each sponsor's nonprofit services, click on its logo.

Downtown suites for lease with onsite parking
The Sol Center, located at 708 E. Michigan St. near the Bottleworks District in downtown Indianapolis, has affordable rental suites and collaborative spaces for nonprofit organizations. Leases include the use of a full kitchen, café style seating, meeting spaces, onsite parking and WiFi access. Contact Christian Page
Are you an attorney who wants to create more community impact and not just more billable hours? Are you a community or social services leader looking for a platform that tangibly removes obstacles to success and defends the rights of the most vulnerable? Apply your leadership experience in a legal venue and make a difference every day in central Indiana and across the state. Join an organization dedicated to promoting justice for low-income families and individuals as a way of demonstrating Christ's love. The Clinic is a United Way community partner and IRS-designated low-income tax clinic. The Clinic provides legal solutions focused on serving homeless veterans, immigrants and refugees, families facing foreclosure and other housing crises, victims of human trafficking, domestic violence and sexual assault, ex-offenders, and family law matters.
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Executive Director - Boone County Chamber of Commerce


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Mentoring Relationship Specialist- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana

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