'Help is available': Despite pandemic, nonprofit continues servicing the community

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Rio Grande Valley nonprofit organizations have faced many struggles due to the coronavirus pandemic— a new report shows one-third will not survive.

According to the Center for Disaster Philanthropy, a nonprofit organization from Washington D.C. the financial difficulties over the last year puts one in three nonprofit organizations at risk as a worst case scenario. 

Buckner International in the Rio Grande Valley is a nonprofit organization that offers a variety of services to children, families and single parents in the Valley. 

Like many other nonprofit organizations, they said they had a rough start.

"Once the pandemic hit we could no longer do home visits, school visits, or even have the parents [and/or] family come into our offices," Family and Youth Success Program Supervisor Jesus Franco said. 

Connecting with people is at the core of what they do, but Franco said many of the families they work with do not have internet services or smart devices to keep in touch. 

Franco said since going remote, the organization has held more than 1,600 virtual services in the Valley— from workshops to support groups. 

"We've been doing that on a monthly basis," Franco said. "To remind them [that] our program is still here and our help is available."

Through the pandemic the organization has conducted seven virtual adoptions and seven virtual foster care certifications, all while keeping every staff member employed. 


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