CINCINNATI — The pandemic has caused a lot of fundraising efforts to go virtual or be put on hold over the last few months, and some organizations have seen a boom in support while others have not been so lucky.
Fran Wesseling is the volunteer director of the Cincinnati chapter of the Green Beret Foundation, an organization which provides support to the families of special forces units. She said around this time of year, they hold their annual Steps and Salutes 5K. Support for this year's event has skyrocketed.
The organization is holding a virtual 5K this year, and 45 people in 45 other states have signed up to run in the 5K, as well as 12 people from around the world. Wesseling also said usually they raise about $17,000 each year, but this year, they have raised close to $26,000.
While the Green Beret Foundation has benefited from these changes, the fundraisers for the 1N5 organization, a local nonprofit which promotes mental health awareness for young people, have been hurting.
Nancy Miller, the 1N5 executive director, said they raise about $171,000 during an event in a normal year. This year however, they have raised about $51,000.
While less money has been donated to the organization, Miller said the need for mental health services has only increased this year.
"The number of calls to the suicide hotline in the month of April went up 1,000%," Miller said. "So we know a lot of people are struggling out there."
Miller said she and the organization are doing their best given the situation.
"We're trying to get ahead of it," she said. "We're trying to get people into a place where they're healthy so that they don't have a mental illness."