We all know that the last couple of years has been hard with the economy taking a roller coaster ride, not only have business suffered, people lost jobs; but the charity sector has also taken a hit.

Some organisations have had to reduce their level of service, cut back on overheads and reduced staffing levels; they haven’t been immune to the financial headaches suffered by others in the community.

There have been others in the non-profit sector who have gained support, mostly these have been organisations offering support in areas that provide shelter, food and clothing – human needs groups.

Others haven’t been so fortunate, but with a new year comes new opportunities; and it’s now that plans should have been dusted off, signed off and action started to get the funding needed to provide the services your organisation provides.

Are you expecting the same level of support or less this year? What can you do to change this?

There’s been some talk that the level of giving in the lead up to Christmas and New Year has been up; which is typical – the spirit of giving always seems to come at that time of year. But, we need to maintain the level of giving.

In the coming year it would pay to look at your structure, what areas can you adapt to make the most use of the resources you have? Also, it may pay to be more open with your supporters so that they have a clear picture of where their contributions are going. Being an open book with your supporters will in the long run add value, it will help them to make the decision to continue (and hopefully increase) their support.

Set yourself some targets, not just of the level of support you need, but also the number of supporters you will gain in a certain timeframe; and how you will connect with them.

You now have more resources at your fingertips to connect with supporters, sure, your typical letters, emails, faxes will remain – but, remember to make use of social media to connect. If you’re not using, or only using social media sporadically to connect, then up it’s usage; add it to your plan. When your supporters can see you actively engaged, asking and answering questions as well as talking about the work you do; will lift your profile and in time will aid you in your fundraising, supporter needs.

Don’t stop and dwell too much on what has been, the lessening of support; instead, stop, take a breath and look at the possibilities in front of you.


See also,

Individual Philanthropy: Looking Back And Forging Ahead To 2011

5 Ways Charities Will Be Using Social Media In 2011

Seth Godin on Innovation, Failure and Why Non-profits Should Stop Operating like Businesses

Philanthropy’s 10 Favorite Buzzwords of the Decade Show How Nonprofits Are Changing



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