Nonprofits are bracing for long lines of people seeking assistance with their energy bills this winter, according to The Associated Press. Freedom Service Dogs, Incorporated in Englewood, which rescues shelter dogs and trains them to become companions for soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, has seen donations fall by 32 percent. No matter the nonprofit, money is tight this year, according to a 9News/USA Today report, which finds that the nation’s 400 largest charities expect donations to decline an average of nine percent this year. “Nonprofits are not going away, and they are used to facing difficult times, and they will continue to do that. They need assistance from the public to do that, but they will always be there to fill the gap where either government or business cannot,” says Renny Fagan, CEO of the Colorado Nonprofit Association.

Difficult times have dragged on for months now. As 5280 noted earlier this year, the Philanthropic Giving Index, which measures nonprofit fund-raisers’ confidence, is at a 10-year low, having dropped 27 percent between June and December 2008. Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal takes a look at “What’s Wrong With Charitable Giving—and How to Fix It.” One quick fix: Donors need to give more, and to the places that really need it.