Profiles of Impact -- Children's Therapy Center, growing the seeds of nonprofit security
At six years old, Molly Breidinger has learned to face hurdles in life that most people don’t experience at such a tender age.
Molly goes to the Children’s Therapy Center once a week. Physical Therapist Sarah Polich helps her stretch, then takes her through exercises designed to strengthen her leg muscles. When she gets onto the treadmill, she puts on a princess dress.
“Molly is the reason we do this,” says longtime Executive Director George McDoniel. “She gets tired like anyone else. She gets sore like anyone else. But she keeps going.”
That type of determination not only enables children like Molly to grow and overcome the obstacles she faces – it also drives a nonprofit like the Children’s Therapy Center to focus on long-term goals for the organization.
George and the Board are determined to build the organization’s endowment. Unlike annual donations, which are vital to day-to-day operations, gifts to an organization’s endowment provides a source of support forever.
George has been Executive Director since 1984. Helping children like Molly is a passion. Some children come to the Center for therapy, but because it isn’t always easy for them to come to the Center, many children have in-home sessions.
“Since 2002,” George says, “we’ve more than doubled our services, but we’ve only increased our budget by 13%. We’ve been very successful at increasing our efficiency.”
Security of Endowment
For George and the Board of Directors at the Children’s Therapy Center, building endowment is necessary for financial security. An endowment grows over time, with a percentage paid out each year to the organization. An endowment will help ensure the Center weathers dips in the economy. In better economic times, it will help to fund more equipment for the children, training for staff, and other operating expenses.
“It may take a while to build,” he says, “but an endowment is absolutely worth it.” George and members of his Board of Directors have worked with the Community Foundation to build endowment.
“The Community Foundation has coached us through this,” George says. “We wouldn’t be building endowment without their help.”
In the next room, Molly continues to work hard with Sarah. She walks on the treadmill wearing her princess dress and a determined look on her face. Occasionally, she turns and smiles. Seeing that smile makes it very clear -- perseverance and a focus on the future are essential elements of success for both Molly and for the Children’s Therapy Center.