Charities are the backbone of community outreach programs, support projects and social rehabilitation facilities. Typically, such organizations survive on government assistance and contributions from private donors. But finding innovative and effective ways to raise money for a good cause is often quite challenging – especially when there are so many worthy projects competing for attention out there!
Because they work on the front lines with some of society’s most vulnerable and at-risk members, graduates of community support workers training may be particularly motivated to generate donations for a local transition house, youth center, multicultural services, or crisis center.
But securing funds is an art form in itself and it takes business savvy and a well-thought out strategy to inspire others to give.Here are some essential tips to remember when formulating your pitch and approaching potential donors:
Networking and relationship-building are incredibly important parts of successful fundraising. Fundraisers are far more likely to secure donations from people they already know, who understand the cause and can trust the organization. What’s more, when a charity is introduced to a potential donor from an existing supporter, even if it’s solely through an email, the charity is automatically seen as more credible.
Whether looking to secure donations from big corporations or local community members, CSWs need to get out there and start making connections with past donors and current prospects.
Success is in the Details
Whether you’re pitching your donation request to an individual or a company, the audience will be watching closely to make sure you’re knowledgeable and confident.CEOs will want to know that their money is in good hands and will be allocated as promised.Local community members will want to know that you’re working to make their neighbourhood a better place. Social service workers who have completed a Mental Health Worker program, or have addictions worker training might explain just which aspect of rehabilitation the donor’s money would likely go towards, providing plenty of detail and examples to instill confidence in the project.
Make it Personal
Some people think that in order to secure a donation, they need to present their idea like a business plan – formally, objectively, and with little emotion.But although it’s important to be organized, it is perhaps even more important show passion and in-depth knowledge about your cause.Tell a story about the women’s shelter you work at, or the community center where you help at-risk teens get back on track – personal anecdotes that will help your audience connect on a human level. You may even suggest that they come visit – or volunteer at – your organization to get a first-hand look at where their donation would go. People need to understand and relate to your cause before they’ll commit to giving.
How would you go about raising funds for a community organization?