Ever since Cindy Wagman was finishing up her undergraduate degree, she knew she wanted to be a part of the world of fundraising. She spent 15 years working with charities but when the opportunity came up to go out on her own, she took advantage of it and created The Good Partnership.
The Good Partnership helps non-profits achieve their fundraising goals. Some of the organizations they have fundraised for are StopGap Foundation, Ernestine’s Women’s Shelter, and the Equality Effect. The Good Partnership doesn’t do one time fundraising events, rather they come in and substitute as a fundraising department when organizations don’t have the means to run their own. Contracting services are an increasingly popular way organizations choose when they’re exploring innovative ways to achieve goals within a fixed budget. When The Good Partnership works with an organization to do their fundraising, they do all the work by taking advantage of their networks.
“I quickly learned there is a whole group of organizations that are so lost with fundraising and they’re so small and no one is talking to them, no one is giving them help,” explained Wagman. “That is my mission, to work with the small organizations that have some success with fundraising but can’t grow it.”
There are a variety of different types of fundraisers for organizations to participate in. The best fundraiser for an organization reinforces the mission and is engaging for the audience.
Wagman is involved with her son’s school, which gave her some insight on school fundraisers. For schools, there can be two different approaches for determining the types of fundraisers. Schools can have a fundraiser that engages the entire family or one that allows parents to have the night off.
“The biggest thing people need to know is that it all takes work. This is especially true of crowdfunding,” explained Wagman. “There is a big misconception that if people just create a crowdfunding campaign and put it online, it will go viral and it will find all these people on the internet who want to support that work.”
Wagman explained that the best way to raise money is to connect with your current network. By getting people excited about the cause and the impact the money will have, the donations are more likely to happen.
“What are the schools and organizations assets, and how do you leverage them?”
If an organization or school has a large number of members/students, running a fundraiser that has high engagement with the group is an asset. Smaller organizations or schools that have highly involved members is an asset to fundraising.
“The only area people will fail time and time again is if they really try to convince people to support their organization that they don’t care about.”
Understanding the demographic is also important when considering fundraising. Raffles are ideal for diverse communities due to the flexibility of the amount of money that can be donated.
There are many options for nonprofits to raise money, but the type of fundraiser depends on each organizations situation.
Tips from Cindy for successful fundraising:
- You can never convert someone to support your cause; fundraising isn’t advocacy work. Find people who already support the cause of the organization.
- The more people who love your organization, the more they will give to their ability. Focus on the people, not the dollar amount.
- Stories pull on heart strings, not statistics. Focus on one story that is relatable that focuses on the individual’s journey and how the organization helped.
- MyClassNeeds is a crowdfunding website for publicly funded schools to raise money for their cause.
- Get your children organizing a family fun night or another event with the Junior Event Pros workshop by Fariday Events.