Fraser holding emergency relief fundraiser due to pandemic stresses

We all know non-profits have been hit especially hard during the pandemic, Fraser is among them. 

Well known for providing for people on the autism spectrum and with various mental health challenges, Fraser now needs some help in the wake of the omicron spike. 

To be clear, Fraser is not closing. The 13,000 children and adults they serve each year can find some comfort in that. However, challenge after challenge through the pandemic finances  have now reached an emergency level. 

"This is a crisis for us, and it’s been going on a long time," Nancy Baldrica, vice president and chief marketing/development officer told FOX 9.

At peak of the omicron spike last month, Baldrica said COVID exposures and infections resulted in 25 percent of staff and 75 percent of children unable to attend Fraser's daycare, school and clinical services.  

"We don’t get paid if someone cancels because they're sick, or because their clinician is sick," said Baldrica. "So those revenues are unrefundable, we cannot make those up."

Meanwhile at Fraser’s group homes and supportive living apartments the staffing crisis has hit especially hard. 

"We are meeting all the health and safety needs of these clients, but we don't have enough staff to give them those additional experiences that we know are really important for their mental health, social well-being, and their ability to thrive," said Baldrica.

Between paying more for temporary workers, and having to refund tuition credits, the lost revenue inspired Fraser to launch an emergency relief fund aimed at raising $350,000 by the end of February. 

"Any amount makes a huge difference," said Baldrica. "A dollar a month, five dollars a month – it all makes a big difference."

Baldrica credit's Fraser's nearly 90-year legacy with surviving these very special circumstances. She also reminds that the pandemic has exacerbated the need for mental health and various services, and at this point months-long wait lists aren't getting any shorter. 

"And now the COVID money is gone and we are not getting that for the federal government anymore, so that’s why we are asking our community to help is continue to provide these services for the community," said Baldrica. 

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