Ideas for Helping Nonprofits get the Support They Need
Finding ways for nonprofits to communicate their real needs to donor is what we call a complex problem. Clearly there are no silver bullets. Nonetheless, we have put a lot of thought into possible approaches for you as a vital person within your organization to consider. Feedback from people like yourself will help us continue to better understand this communication problem as we continue reaching for better solutions.
Ideas to Consider
- If your organization has not done so already, consider making a concerted efforts at engaging donors in your work. Invite them to important meetings and events. Draw upon their areas of knowledge and expertise. Hold webinars to share your organizational aspirations and to seek input from those who support you. The more these people get emotionally identified with your work, the more likely that they will understand and support your real needs to grow your organization. We believe that it is key that donors come to own your mission alongside you.
- When meeting with supporters you may be able to find a way to help them understand first more generally growth funding problems that span your sector. This might be a good first step to helping them better understand the difficulties that you are facing. Have references or articles for them to review available.
- If you can find creative ways to do so, convey messages pertaining to growth funding issues in your newsletter, in general emails you send out, on your website, or otherwise.
- Direct your donors to our site. There are several reasons why this could be helpful. As written on our About Us page, we are keenly interested in helping donors understand that: a) Problems with capacity and human resources shortages pervades the nonprofit sector, and that it is most often a state of affairs that need to change, not a weakness on the part of a particular nonprofit. b) If done right, providing human resource support can have a very positive and long-lasting impact. We believe that helping donors understand these two points can set a better foundation for dialogues about investing in staffing-related concerns. We also believe that the materials available on our donor’s corner, along with testimonials from people like you, can create not only an intellectual understanding but also foster an empathic and inspired reaction.
- Give careful thought about which donors to target. Think about whether you should focus on supporters, mid-size or above, or do a crowd-sourcing campaign.
- If possible, identify a supporter who might be willing to provide a matching challenge for others to respond to. Also consider asking board members to participate in this matching challenge as well.
Additionally, if you have not done so already, consider becoming a member of umbrella organizations that can help you in diverse areas including fundraising, social media, technologies, financials, and board development.
- Register and join the Invest in People campaign!