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Recently, Infobelt participated in a project to help local Charlotte nonprofit McColl Center plan, understand, and otherwise develop their IT strategy. Nonprofits often have all the technology problems and needs traditional companies have, but rarely have the resources available to make those concerns a priority. Apparo, a nonprofit IT consulting company,  empowers other local nonprofits by filling this gap and linking local nonprofits in need to technology companies that are willing to volunteer their time to help.

Housed in “a historic, neo-Gothic church in Uptown Charlotte,” the McColl Center for Art & Innovation is an organization focused on providing for the community opportunities for engagement with the art world through open studios, workshops, gallery events, and more. They also occasionally have wine nights, so if you need your next date night idea, look no further. They are a prominent institution that is recognized within the community, so overall it wasn’t a hard sell to get us on board. Their needs were something that we could address as a technology firm, and we wanted to do our part to help an organization like that – especially a nonprofit in a tight space with budgeting.

We had four people directly involved with the project. Each was brought on board due to a combination of their individual skill set and their desire to help out with a nonprofit arts company. For the whole team, this project has been somewhat of an eye-opener to the struggles of nonprofits, particularly in their IT operations. Many, McColl included, have to dedicate so much to ensure quality operations that they often don’t have many remaining resources for capital investment in things like IT. However, that fact doesn’t eliminate the complexities they still have as organizations, and the need is still there. One positive trend we see is that as technological capabilities of the firms that service nonprofits improve, they are better able to jump the needs gap that exists to catch the nonprofits up with the leading edge.

Ultimately, we all enjoyed being a part of this project. We feel a strong sense of belonging to the city in which we live and work, and want to help those that contribute through means like arts and culture by sharing areas in which we may have expertise.

To learn more about McColl, visit their website at http://www.mccollcenter.org/

 

Author: Alex Balasiotes, Infobelt

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