The words

2020 was a year like no other. It required resilience, patience, strength and determination – it required toughness. No one displayed grit more than our nonprofit community. But our nonprofit sector has always been tough. They bravely step into impossible challenges, tackle the most difficult problems facing our community and aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty.

For many in our community, every day is a crisis. And our nonprofits show up for them, day after day after day. This is what it means to be nonprofit tough. Does your nonprofit have what it takes?


Wake Enterprises faced the unprecedented challenges of COVID-19. Still, they leaned into adversity with a Nonprofit Tough attitude that demonstrated the grit and tenacity that has made them so effective for four decades.

Angel Oak Creative believes the most successful, equitable and welcoming communities possess key traits that make them Nonprofit Tough. Is your community Nonprofit Tough?

What does it mean to be a Nonprofit Tough organization? We only have to look at Inter-Faith Food Shuttle and their commitment to delivering on their promise to see Nonprofit Tough in action.

The only way to explain the unexplainable is to point to the source. For North Raleigh Ministries, being Nonprofit Tough was a direct result of God’s miraculous provision.


Join us for these informal conversations (Zoom style!) with some pretty fantastic folks who demonstrate what it means to be a tough nonprofit and part of a tough nonprofit community.

Gail Perry and Kathryn Gamble are some of the most respected and in-demand fundraising professionals around. We had the honor of Talking Tough with them about our next trait and why nonprofits should focus on being relational rather than transactional when it comes to engaging with their donors.

In our first “Talking Tough” interview, Bear McBride, Communications Coordinator from Healing Transitions, dives into the first of five tough traits: compelling. Listen in as he shares why having a compelling story makes for a tough nonprofit. More interview videos coming soon as we dive into all five tough traits!

In this interview we talk with Barbara Jessie-Black, President and CEO of CommunityWorx. We discuss what it takes to exhibit driven nonprofit leadership.

In this interview we talk with Jackie Jordan Welker, Senior Director, Marketing and Communications at Make-A-Wish® Eastern North Carolina. Jackie explains how to inspire others and make wishes come true even with limited resources.

In this interview we talk with Amber Smith, Executive Director at Activate Good. We talk about what it takes to create a generous nonprofit community.

In this interview we talk with Amy Strecker, Stakeholder Engagement Manager at Duke Energy Foundation, about what it looks like to be an empowering community. Amy provides real suggestions for how to build a relationship and gain access to the $20 million per year Duke Energy Foundation grants to North Carolina organizations.

In this interview we talk with Allan Burrows and Clare Jordan from CapDev. We take a deep dive into community engagement and moving beyond transactional relationships.


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