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Posted on in Fundraising

Janet’s been a reading tutor in Sunrise Community Center’s Book Buddies program for a few years now. She recently did a terrific job organizing a fundraiser to raise some extra cash for the program. She makes her own donation to Book Buddies each year, and seems pretty reliable and involved.

Let’s ask her onto the Sunrise Community Center’s board!

Well, yes, but…

There’s a long journey from program volunteer to organizational board member, and Janet’s board orientation – and training through the whole first year – will need to help her to make that leap. 

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Posted on in Nonprofit
I don't know everything.

Heck, there are times the world is moving so fast it feels like I barely know anything relevant to this new-ish century.

So I have my "gurus" I call, everything from HR to social media to IT. Many of these folks offer me their expertise on a voluntary basis - their way of contributing to a better world.

I started thinking more about this when I realized that I, myself, serve as a life-line to several nonprofit leaders, on fundraising and board relations.

It's the "I think I know what to do but maybe my thinking is a little skewed so I'll run it by Cause Effective" school of thought.

And, surprise (!) our clients' thinking is often a little skewed - they're too down in the trenches to have the right perspective. "My board member wants to weigh in on the invites for the house party, but she's not even the host and it's really slowing down the process" went one lament.

The lifeline's answer? "Be glad she's interested enough to take the time - it's a hop skip and jump from there to making sure the invitations go to some of her pals, too."

Another recent query? "Do I really need to mail-merge all my appeal letters if I hand-write on them?"

Lifeline answer? "Depends on how much money you want out of the folks you’re writing to. If it's enough that it reflects a real personal commitment to your agency, you'd better honor that sentiment with personalization choices all the way down the line."

Don’t we all have that with someone? From asking advice on how a dress fits, or a tie is knotted, to how the t’s are crossed and i’s are dotted on fundraising-related matter.

The outside eye, the lifeline…

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