Founded in 1953, the United Cerebral Palsy Association of Greater Indiana (UCPAGI, www.ucpaindy.org) provides support and services to children and adults with cerebral palsy and their families.
With only two full-time staff members, UCPAGI delivers information, advocacy, and financial assistance to about 10,000 clients spread throughout all of Indiana’s 92 counties. The agency averages over 40 new clients each month and responds to nearly 2,000 requests each year.
UCPAGI does not charge any fees to the clients it serves, and it does not receive any federal, state or local government funding. Like all nonprofit agencies, UCPAGI is constantly looking for new ways to stretch scarce resources in support of its mission.
When a change in funding led to a review of all of UCPAGI’s operational expenses, the phone bill stood out.
“I said, ‘We can’t just keep paying this,’” recalled Donna Roberts, UCPAGI’s executive director.“Something had to change for the better.”
A technical advisor told Roberts about Appia (www.appiaservices.com) and recommended she consider a hosted VoIP service. The cost savings were attractive, but Roberts had some other concerns.
“I’m the least technical person in the world,” she said. “Most of our clients contact us by telephone or electronic mail, and I didn’t want something that might be unreliable or complicated to use.”
In the end, Appia’s successful track record with other nonprofits and the recommendations of her advisor convinced Roberts to give the service a try.
“I wish we had found Appia three years ago,” Roberts said.
UCPAGI was able to cut its phone bill, even while adding advanced new features such as electronic faxing and voicemail-to-email.
“Bringing work home is part of the job,” Roberts said. “With features like voicemail-to-email,(the Appia system) really is portable in the best sense of the word. It has been a godsend tome.”
Without an in-house tech team of her own, Roberts also appreciates the free 24/7 support Appia provides for all of its services.
“A lot of companies talk about customer service and don’t mean a word of it,” Roberts said.“Appia understands there’s a person on the other end of the phone.”
For more information about the United Cerebral Palsy Association of Greater Indiana, its services, or how you can help, please call 317-632-3561 or visit www.ucpaindy.org.