Australian Fundraising Ideas Blog

Learn the secrets to holding a fun and profitable fundraiser from Mr Fundraising himself, Billy G - and others who have made fundraising work for their school or organisation!

The Benefits Obtained From Team Fundraising

The Benefits Obtained From Team Fundraising

In schools, you will never run out of fundraising ideas especially if it is participated by groups or teams. While team fundraising is fun and exciting, to begin with, there are other benefits you can get from it. 

It minimises the overall fundraising costs. 

When it comes to school fundraising, everyone may have surely gotten involved in some sort of school fundraiser such as selling tickets to a play, selling candy bars and cookie dough and participating in fun run. However, the overhead costs associated with these campaigns require additional efforts. Team fundraising can minimise these costs. Since the funds go directly to the school, you can be sure that the products are shipped and delivered to the recipients. Instead of asking children to walk door-to-door, team fundraising takes care of the job. Since the younger generations truly understand the power of the Internet, participants can simply use the social media to spread the word. 

It makes staff, parents and students account for the success of the school.

Another benefit of team fundraising is that it help students understand the value of team work. Team fundraising also instils real life lessons that older students can benefit from as they grow into adults. Whether you want to create a competitive fundraising or keep it friendly, almost everyone will be committed to participate. Although parents and staff may perceive fundraising as another burden, there is no doubt that keeping students engaged in the school's budget initiatives is a rewarding experience. 

Help build friendship among students. 

Students can achieve success by working together. If they are focused on creating their own story and fundraiser, it is possible for them to miss the bigger picture. It is also important for staff and parents to use a common story about the importance of team fundraiser and how it can help spread the message. They should also know the importance of communication and hardwork. Team fundraising provides a perfect opportunity to work towards the same overall goal. If a team member is struggling, other team members can help out by giving tips and insight. 

4 Habits of Highly Effective Fundraising Organisations

4 Habits of Highly Effective Fundraising Organisations

When it comes to succeeding in your fundraising campaign, commitment, hardwork and leadership play an important role. You may have talented and skillful members, but without leadership, it will be difficult for everyone to work towards the same goal. Highly effective leaders are not just sitting and waiting for results to happen. They are making an extra effort to make a difference. Here are the common habits shared by these organisations:

1. They practice leadership

Leading by example is one of the best ways to instill good values in staff or members. If leaders are only known for giving directions without putting words into actions, members will get easily stressed because they are the only ones who are making an effort to make the plan work. Without initiative from leaders, it is easy to pin the blame on staff when things go wrong. Practicing leadership makes members realise they are not alone in their quest for supporting a good cause. 

2. They model wisdom and patience

Not everyone can share the most insightful ideas during meetings, but this does not mean that the fundraising plan is not going anywhere. These people do not lack idea, they just lack confidence to make a contribution to the organisation. When leaders model wisdom, members will also be inspired to do the same. Even when your members have shortcomings, leaders must have patience to deal with mistakes because it is only through mistakes that members can become better. 

3. They welcome growth and learning

A true leader attentively listens and soaks up in a wealth of information. They also ask powerful questions to shed light on the issues that hamper their ability to move ahead. When leaders dedicate time to grow and learn, members can also gain more insights, which they can use to accomplish fundraising goals. A leader who is not afraid of learning can also inspire and guide members to become a great example to the community.

4. They are both optimistic and realistic

While setting goals inspire members to work harder, realistic expectations must also be set to ensure that these goals are aligned with the organisation's objectives. Mapping out a strategy and preparing for challenges will help you fulfil your organisations short-term and long-term needs. 

Three Fundraising Challenges Small Groups Face

Three Fundraising Challenges Small Groups Face

Smaller groups have their share of struggles in the fundraising sector. Some find it difficult to reach the wider public while others lack ample support. Groups face bigger challenges when the organisation decide to go digital. Find out about the biggest issues that small groups need to tackle and their solutions.

1. Donor Retention

Donors are essential to every fundraising organisation regardless of their mission, size and objective. When you raise money, it is not something you forget after donors commit to making a donation. You need to culvitate your donors as they are the integral part of your organisation. For small groups, they need to double the effort in retaining donors. This means you need to invest your time to stay connected with your donors. Aside from inviting new donors, retaining donors is also necessary. Donors want to feel included in your fundraising efforts. Afterall, your fundraising campaign will not succeed without them. Keeping them in the loop by informing them how the money was used the first time and saying thanks will ensure you stay on their radar.

2. Sustainability

Even if you have a great mission, it does not guarantee that you will be able to sustain your organisation's mission for years. You will also have to think about the future of your organisation because raising money is not a once-in-a-lifetime endeavor. When you take an action, you need to start with creating a sustainable business model. It is important for small groups to have the right resources. With the right resources at the right time, your organisation will be able to reduce cost and offer more resources.

3. Lack of Resources

Fundraising organisations are not only working for money but also toward fulfilling a mission. Resources include supporters and when organisations have not pooled their resources any mission will not be accomplished causing the group to discontinue. You need to ask yourself who youc an team up to make things happen. If you have put up your organisations for the right reasons, you will be able to seek help from organisations with the same goals and mission.

The success of a fundraising organisation does not depend on the size of the group, but effort of each member in making the campaign successful. Small groups can consider scratch and support card fundraiser as it is easy to set up and organise. 

Workplace Philanthrophy: Charity Begins At The Office

heart shaped symbol as medical technology concept GktZQ9H Charity at the office is considered a growing trend in spite of taking only baby steps. One thing good about workplace philanthrophy is willingness of employees to contribute to charitable causes by utilising their resources including their time and money. These days, workplace giving programs are easier to administer and set up because there are new technology platforms that maximise employees’ efforts. In the past, workplace giving programs were struggling because there are several factors that get in the way. Aside from lack of experience and awareness in delivering programs, the people behind the program also lack understanding of how corporate and charity sector works.

With workplace giving that encourages employees to develop a habit to donate to their chosen charity, a fundraising event will not be difficult to organise. It is evident that workplace philanthrophy is making big waves. Based on Australian Charities Fund, approximately 250 million dollars was raised in January 2016 alone. These funds were joined by 3,100 employers and benefitted by 300 charities. Without a doubt, these figures are impressive and they are making a difference in terms of the income and service delivery of charities, which are connected with good programs.

With these figures, organisations will be more inspired to improve the techniques and take workplace giving to the next level. Corporate social responsibility is considered a key driver of workplace philanthrophy because employers will get to decide on the part their business is going to play in contributing to the social good. Employers will also encourage employees to contribute and participate in peer to peer fundraising.

Progressive companies that have plans will take corporate social responsibility seriously. An employer needs to be committed so employees are motivated to make a profit from their own contribution. With the help of social media, inspiring fundraising stories will be shared with the prospective donors and the action plan will be in effect.

Peer-to-peer fundraising also involves sacrifice and when everyone in your business is involved, you know that the vital component of corporate social responsibility is obtained. Not only does it create a huge impact on your campaign but on your fundraising efforts as well. With the use of innovative online platforms, you can be sure the employees will create and track giving campaigns. Employees are also given the opportunity to stay flexible and transparent. As a result, employees will have the opportunity to connect the donor with the mission of the organisation. Efforts must be continuous so retention and long-term engagement are achieved.

What Is Fundraising Without A Goal?

goal 20121 1280Anyone who wants to reap success from their fundraising efforts needs to set a goal. If you have received an advice that goal setting is no longer necessary in a fundraising program, your organisation might be headed in the wrong direction. This is one of the most common misconceptions of people who want to venture in fundraising. If your organisation does not have any goals to accomplish, you will be confused about the purpose of your efforts. For instance, you are running too many campaigns, but it seems they are not getting anywhere. Something is missing and it can be due to the absence of proper goal setting. Establishing a fundraising program can be a tedious process as it involves group effort. If you are not sure where your fundraising campaign is going, your organisation will most likely become unsuccessful. Even if you have a goal, your fundraising campaign may also stand a little chance of accomplishing them if:

• The goals you set are unrealistic.

Everyone aspires to embrace overnight success, but this is not feasible. Instead of aiming for instant success, work on a slow and steady pace, making sure that all group members have contributed to the campaign. No ideas are too little or too big if all of the members of your team make an effort to accomplish the goal. If you want volunteers to stay motivated, you need to start with yourself by focusing on your goal.

• The goals are not supported by group members.

Proper goal setting involves all group members. You cannot simply come up with a goal and expect your group to support it without consulting them. When setting goals for the campaign, you need to gather your volunteers or team members so you can discuss options. You should share the same goals with your volunteers so you can explore options and accomplish the goal together.

• The goals do not have any action plan.

You may have too many goals in mind, but the problem arises when you discovered that you do not have enough tools and resources to accomplish such goals. This is going to be an issue because it is like trying to reach an unknown destination without a road map. Everything becomes blurry and unclear. Before you set goals, make sure you have enough resources and tools to ensure your goals are going to be accomplished.

• The goals do not reflect the campaign’s primary objective.

If your goals do not coincide with your campaign’s objective, it can also be a complete disaster. Make sure you are familiar with your organisation’s main objective because from there, you will be able to set a realistic goal that will work for the rest of your team members and organisation.

Your fundraising campaign can become very successful if your goals are properly set and accomplished. It does not have to involve any complicated tasks so long as you know where your organisation is heading. Discuss options with your team members and settle differences during meeting. Get the right tools and resources and make sure that you get all of your team members’ ideas.

Check These Misconceptions Before Writing A Fundraising Letter

shopping list 707760 1280How can you bring out the wordsmith in you when writing a fundraising letter if you are quite unsure of the rules to follow? Although thinking through your fingers and simply pouring out your thoughts on paper make the writing tasks easier, you still have to make sure that your thoughts are conveyed properly to potential donors.

When writing a fundraising letter, choosing your words carefully means a lot. You may have a hard time coming up with the best fundraising letter because you can be your own worst critic. This is why you should review your draft and identify some areas for improvement. Make sure your potential donors will feel engaged in your conversation.

Avoid conventional prose and cliches because donors will only get bored. Try to create a connection not only with your potential donors but also with your organisation.  

Although you are writing a letter, when your letter feels like an actual conversation, your prospects will also sense your sincerity. Don’t just be mindful of your grammar and punctuation as you also have to pay attention to the letter’s overall appeal.

Suffice it to say, being keen on details lead you in the right direction.

• Incomplete sentences: A real conversation should have subject-verb agreement. A sentence is a complete thought and when you are writing a letter that resembles a text message, your reader will more likely to skim through the pages of your letter rather read it. Take time to write in complete sentences so you can convey the right message.

• Using “I” frequently: If you are trying to achieve objectivity, this singular voice is often drummed out especially on essay writing. The same rule applies when writing a letter.

• Too much use of dashes: One of the purposes of dashes is to link phrases together but when used liberally, it can also become an eye sore in your letter.

• Contractions: For direct mail writing, contractions are a big no, no. However, many people including the most educated leader cannot avoid using this shorthand especially when speaking.

• Using “and” at the beginning of a sentence: You may consider using 'and' to encourage your readers to keep reading the letter but the improper use of this connector can repel readers instead of engaging them in a written conversation.

• Repetition: Instead of using the same words over and over again, try to rephrase your sentences to come up with a more thoughtful and insightful idea. See to it that you organize your thoughts or points in a logical manner. The message must be conveyed in one paragraph to avoid redundancy.

• Writing in short paragraphs without checking whether the sentences belong together: Creating seven lines in a paragraph that don’t seem to connect with each other may leave your readers lost. Your main goal is to make sure that your readers’ interest is captured and this can be done by ensuring that your letter is easy to read.

• Empty words: In the hopes of making your letter lengthy, you add words that don’t give weight to the entire message. If you wish to write with flair, make sure that the real purpose of your letter is not set aside.

8 Key Steps To Successful Fundraising: Step 4 Of 8

Step 4: Identify Your Organization’s Strengths and Weaknessesopposites 489521 1280

Your members are the heart and soul of your organization and for a fundraising campaign to be effective, you must determine their strengths and weaknesses so you will know how each member can contribute their ideas.

1. Do you know your member’s special skills that you think may be helpful to the organization? Can you easily identify their strengths that will make them an asset to the organization? How can you turn your member’s weaknesses into strength?

Your members have the potential to be the cornerstone of your organization if you know them. You cannot breach success if you know nothing about your members. It will be difficult to connect with them if you do not know where to take the first step. Once you have identified their strengths and weaknesses, you can start planning things out. Find out how you can turn weaknesses into strengths. More often than not, some members only need to be motivated for these weaknesses to turn into strengths.

2. Are your members committed to your organization?

Even when the organization has clear set of goals, it will remain unrecognized if the members are not committed. Your members must be committed to the organization so your plans will be well-executed.

3. Have you determined your members’ attitude towards the organization?

When your members are happy and dedicated, it will surely reflect on how they provide services. It is a major strength of organizations if their members have eagerness to participate in its event and activities.

4. Are your systems up-to-date so you can reach out to potential donors easily and keep your members informed of the latest news in your organization?

Gone are the days when organizations dish out information to the members through weekly or monthly meetings. In this modern day and age, you can help your members stay updated of the organization’s progress by means of using some advanced tools and systems. When it comes to reaching out to prospective donors, you can also use the modern advancements in technology such as sending emails. However, you need to keep in mind that you have to keep your resource available and updated so you can regularly monitor your organization’s progress.

5. Are you ready to face problems that may arise within the organization? Do you have a strategic plan in case you are faced with a series of challenges?

Your organizations will stand strong if you have prepared a strategic plan especially when there are problems within the organization. If you don’t have any solid plan yet, you need to appoint someone to formulate an effective plan.

6. Does your heart belong to the organization? Do you have passion and commitment to provide ways of improving the organization?

Your members may be the cornerstone of your organization, but you are the one who will set the pace and tone. You are also the person that your members are looking up to so you need to be a hundred percent committed. If your members see your determination and energy, they will surely be motivated to follow in your footsteps.

This step will help you share your members’ strengths to prospective donors.
Since you already know your organization’s weaknesses, find ways to keep them motivated.