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Mon Jul 8, 2019, 07:43 AM

After a year of close calls, last-minute bailouts, Special Olympics of Oregon survives financial

After a year of close calls, last-minute bailouts, Special Olympics of Oregon survives financial crisis


On a cool Friday night in early June, more than 100 soccer players gathered at Portland’s Providence Park for the Summer Soccer Invitational.

It was a pivotal moment for Special Olympics Oregon. A year ago, the nonprofit had fallen into financial chaos. It was too broke to stage competitions. Lenders and vendors, some that hadn’t been paid in a year, were clamoring for their money. Insolvency and bankruptcy loomed over the organization like the blade of a guillotine.

But Special Olympics did not fade away thanks to a new management team that refused to give up and the unexpected kindness of deep-pocketed strangers. The last 12 months included wrenching cutbacks, countless public apologies, last-ditch rescues and a dramatic deathbed decision that could prove the organization’s deliverance.

And the June soccer tournament with its 150 corporate sponsors was the most public evidence to date that Special Olympics is back. “It felt like closing the door on the past,” said Britt Carlson Oase, CEO of Special Olympics Oregon. “Are we back? No, not entirely. It will take us another two to three years to really get there. But we’re going to redefine the Special Olympics.”

Read more: https://www.bendbulletin.com/business/7282687-151/after-a-year-of-close-calls-last-minute-bailouts

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