To launch a successful fundraising program, an organization should have created a number of documents including the Case for Support, Gift Acceptance Policies and Procedures, and a Donor Recognition Policy. The Case explains “why” you are raising money, the Gift Acceptance Policies delineate what constitutes an acceptable gift and under what circumstances your organization will accept the donation, and the Donor Recognition Policy explains how you will express gratitude to the donor.
Corporate matching gifts occur when an individual makes a charitable contribution and the individual’s employer matches the employee’s gift by sending a contribution to the same nonprofit organization. Corporations will in some cases match an employee’s volunteer hours with a matching gift.
Two nonprofits similar in mission and staff size are using donor management software to track donations and fundraising activities. The first organization has a database full of bad data. Donors are not getting receipts; deceased donors are getting appeal letters. Staff members have not been trained and there is no support. They complain that the software does not work and that they hate the system. The organization is handcuffed when planning their fundraising strategies or tracking their effectiveness. The second organization loves its donor management software. The data is clean, their donors receive accurate mailings, the organization is successfully managing their fundraising activities, and staff love the reports. New personnel are trained on the software before they ever log in and support is available to resolve any problems and questions that come up.
Here’s the kicker: Both nonprofits are using the same software package.
I am on a number of LinkedIn groups that are primarily concerned with nonprofits and fundraising. Recently on one of the groups there was a lot of discussion about the selection of a fundraising/donor management software package. To be honest, I was amazed by the outpouring.
Buzz words come and go for various reasons. I guess that is why they call them “buzz” words. Popular one minute and gone the next. One buzz word I wish would fly off into the great unknown is the word sustainability as it relates to nonprofits. The rough definition of sustainability is the capacity to endure (thank you Wikipedia). Why are nonprofits content to just build capacity to endure? Read more
I just had an interesting conversation with a co-worker in my office. We market MatchMaker FundRaising Software to a wide-range of nonprofit organizations. The result is that we work with a very diverse group of end-users.
The study, conducted by researchers at the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at the Indiana University Center on Philanthropy, shows that women at every income level give to charity more than men do — and they tend to donate more money on average than their male counterparts.