Guida Brown headshot



You can’t log into social media or read the News without being bombarded about nonprofit fundraisers. Isn’t someone paying nonprofits to do the job they’re tasked to do? Don’t they get grants? Yes and no.

At the Hope Council on Alcohol & Other Drug Abuse, we get paid for some of the services we provide by those we provide them to. Our clients who have operating while intoxicated charges pay for our Intoxicated Driver Program. The services cost quite a bit, and we’re not allowed to charge more than they cost the agency.

We charge for other services, too — testing and Moral Reconation Therapy, for example — and costs are covered. For our Supervised Visitation Program we charge, but costs aren’t covered. Typically our clients are unable to pay the actual cost of services, so we subsidize them — by fundraising.

We get grants. We’re grateful to the Mary Frost Ashley Charitable Trust for funding our Recovery Coaches and our Loved Ones Group. And we’re equally grateful to the Kenosha Community Foundation, City of Kenosha, Susan B. Anthony Award Dinner, Kenosha Women’s Network, Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department, and, gosh, I hope I’m not missing any funders from the past year!

But these funders pay for specific programs, albeit programs we’ve ASKED them to fund. And we do get funding from the state of Wisconsin — the government — for the KRW Tobacco-Free Coalition.

But the Hope Council, as any nonprofit, wants to meet the needs of our community. So when schools ask us to be at an open house or an organization wants education or a school wants to run an I Am Special program or when we want to run Hope for a Kinder Future or even when we come up with new services we think the community would benefit from, we want to help.

So we raise funds. We ask our community to pay for services to help those in our community who need the services but don’t have the funds to pay for them.

In October we have two such opportunities for you! Join us Friday, Oct. 11, for the Trivia 4 Hope Spooktacular, team trivia hosted by Michelle George of Live! Trivia for four to eight adults with a silent auction and delicious hors d’oeuvres. It’s a fun evening, and your assistance pays for Hope Council services in our community.

The following Sunday, Oct. 20, we are the beneficiaries of the inaugural Hot Cider Hustle 5k. You can run, and if you sign up with code HOPECOUNCIL at https://wisconsinruns.com/kenoshahotciderhustle, you save 10 percent, and we get 10 percent! Not a runner? You can still help: we need volunteers during the race, so please email yazlyn@hopecouncil.org for your spot.

Sure, we nonprofits need your financial support, but there’s another important reason we fundraise: we want your friendship. We want to connect with our community so you know which agency to get help from when the occasion arises … and it will arise. Get involved with nonprofits; our community will be richer for it!

Guida Brown is the executive director of the Hope Council on Alcohol & Other Drug Abuse Inc.