Fundraising in Challenging Times

Robin Noah

Looking at today’s challenges for nonprofits is not a fun exercise. Most everyone is a bit unsteady with the economic environment. The government is facing financial challenges, foundation and corporate giving is down and so is individual donorship.  Yet the demand for service is growing.  This is the basic message I encounter as I coach leaders in the nonprofit arena. 

In March 2009 The Silicon Valley Council of Nonprofits conducted a Fundraising Outlook for Fiscal Year 2009 study. In part they reported that 23% of nonprofits in the study reported that individual giving had decreased more than 20% over the previous year.

These facts may have changed since the report was conducted.  However, the situation gives rise to the question of “What do we do?”  This may sound simplistic and unreal but my recommendation is to put on your running shoes and get set for the race. Start by:

        I.            Giving your organization higher visibility.  Consider promoting your outcomes and achievements.   It is nice to mention what you are planning to do; however, it’s what you achieve that captures interest.

      II.            Showing that your services are in demand.  When was the last time you surveyed your clients to ensure Titan video poker est vraiment le poker en ligne  a son meilleur. that you are providing services related to their needs and demands? 

    III.            Being flexible – be willing to make the necessary changes to meet your client’s current needs and demands.

   IV.            Review your programs for efficiency and effectiveness. An organization that is willing to do things differently in order to accomplish its mission demonstrates that it takes its stewardship seriously.  It gets the attention of donors.  Helps them make decisions as to where their donor dollars will go

I liked this comment from an article in a GuideStar article (Feb 2010) re challenges facing nonprofit boards:  Re-fueling board energy, staff energy, and brand energy. It”s more important than ever for a nonprofit to tell its stories of success in ways that are both consistent and compelling. Board and staff energy fuel the excitement and participation levels of everyone involved. Take time to celebrate the difference you are making.

Do take time to celebrate.  It’s OK to pat yourself on the back when you do the extra ordinary things you do.

Author: Robin Noah, Executive Coaches of Orange County, www.ECofOC.org