2011 Nonprofit PR Awards: Crisis Management

Howard Brown Healthcare Center and Public Communications Inc. - Creating a Lifeline for LGBTQ Health Center

In response to a financial crisis, Howard Brown Health Center, one of the most prominent lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questing (LGBTQ) health agencies in the U.S., partnered with Public Communications to launch the campaign “Lifeline Appeal,” which was designed raise $500,000 in 50 days, by Dec. 23, 2010. 

To rebuilt trust among the public, Public Communications set out to emphasize Howard Brown’s transparency regarding the crisis. The Windy City Times changed its tone from critical to complimentary, and encouraged the community to donate to Lifeline Appeal. More than 1,600 individuals and businesses donated, and the staff supported 24 small community-based events that produced from $2,000 to $25,000 each.

Honorable Mentions

Office Depot Foundation and Business Civic Leadership Center – National Disaster Help Desk for Business: The Help Desk assisted the Office Depot Foundation and Business Civic Leadership Center to encourage businesses to implement strategies to cope with disasters should they occur. BCLC and the foundation featured the Help Desk and the 1-888-MY-BIZ-HELP numbers on their Web sites. During the last four years, the Help Desk has received over 12,300 calls and e-mails from businesses that were supported by tourism and hit hardest when disasters struck. 

Xenophone Strategies for The Salvation Army – Helping Haiti: Social Media Drives Communications During Haiti Earthquake: Xenophone developed a crisis communications policy for the Salvation Army to provide news updates and information about the organization’s response efforts to the earthquake in Haiti on Jan. 12, 2010. Helped by 47 broadcast interviews and nearly 100 print and online interviews, the exposure raised $40 million in earthquake relief.