Help! We need $$, like, NOW.

Solid fund development plans should always be in place to give your nonprofit the foresight to plan ahead for the year and have all the cash in place to pay your employees and keep your programs running well. Even still, nonprofits can sometimes find themselves in a financial shortfall due to myriad unforeseen circumstances.

If you need cash today, get out those phone numbers, emails and addresses and get ready to communicate with all your current and past donors, as well as other supporters. Develop a strategy that includes many avenues to talk with donors and businesses and make your ask. Ask your Board members, trusted volunteers and long-time donors to help spread the word. Make it an all-hands-on-deck approach to fill the gap.

Use this opportunity to build these new donors and successful fundraising tactics into your long-term fundraising strategies. Send thank you's and follow up with the people who give. Cultivate a new community of donors to your work through this unfortunate experience.

If the shortfall is significant, you may need to consider loan programs, cutting expenses, and other more drastic measures. This article from the Fieldstone Alliance gives 20 Emergency Funding Sources for Nonprofits to help you think through all your options.