Year End Giving for charity organizations is always important. An astounding amount of fundraising happens within the last three days of the year.
The question is: does this Year End Giving look particularly different for this particularly unprecedented year, 2020?
A Chicago reporter, when discussing the way COVID-19 will affect nonprofits during this holiday season, made this comment: “It just look different this year, like most other things.”
But how does it look different?
2020 has been remarkable in so many ways, especially in this sector.
Hallmarks of 2020 is unpredictability and variability.
There has been so much uncertainty.
Many people have lost their jobs..
anxiety has been HIGH this year…
So what has that meant for charities?
Has it all been doom and gloom?
Have people stopped giving?
…Quite the opposite.
One thing that has come out of this year is a true reveal of how generous people’s hearts are.
Individual giving has been up.
While there was a dip in March and April in giving, that is not the whole story for 2020.
The news, overall, is good in the nonprofit sector.
The Wall Street Journal records how there has been an unprecedented increase in donations to relief funds during these unprecedented times.
The coronavirus has spurred roughly $13 billion in donations to relief funds and for medical and vaccine research—more than all donations to 12 other big disasters combined, including the 9/11 attacks, the 2008 financial crisis, and hurricanes Harvey and Sandy, according to an analysis by Candid, which tracks and analyzes global philanthropy. Candid adds that some of the biggest grants came from Google: $1.2 billion; Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey: $1 billion; the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation: $355 million; and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings: $15 million—much of which is going directly to efforts like vaccine development or communicable disease control.
Generosity isn’t only being found in big businesses like Google and Netflix either…
Currently, giving is trending above the 2019 giving baseline
… and we haven’t reached year end giving!
And this truth hasn’t only been true for those organizations at the front-lines…
Across sectors and markets, giving has been UP
…as long as the nonprofits have been consistent with their fundraising efforts.
What does this mean?
Don’t give up your fundraising
Even though there is a global pandemic that does not mean your fight is over!
Your community knows that and still cares.
You don’t have to think, “people are low on money and so I shouldn’t ask” or “I’m not on the frontlines, so I shouldn’t ask.”
It has been clear this past year that it’s not just the healthcare and social safety net organizations getting all the donations.
Communities are recognizing the importance of institutions and organizations that help their community thrive like yours!
People want to help pitch in when they see the needs, be it schools needing digital education; isolated and vulnerable communities needed extra support; the arts staying afloat etc.
In other words, it’s not an inappropriate time to ask.
Your cause still has a need. The impact of your organization in your community is important. Keep going!
Bottom line: While the social sector is changing, people realize how important institutions like you are. They see your importance and the need for organizations like you to stay afloat.
…All you have to do stay engaged with your community and continue reaching out to more.
Share your story
In other words, continue to do exactly what you have done before.
This may be new circumstances, but it’s still your same story.
Meaning, YOU have a story: make your case and tell it! And there are people who are willing to give.
While we are in a two-sided situation, both are extreme. Some people are home, with more spending money that isn’t being spent on traveling or going out. (Even if some families have a change in income, people are still more naturally at home, affording different ways to spend money.) Some people are unemployed, living off of savings or reliant on government benefits during this global pandemic.
But the story is the same –
Fundraising 101 is still the central component of fundraising, even this year.
And you already know how to do that – communicating that story effectively and impact the empathy of those who care.
Philanthropic sentiments are high. People are primed to give. At the moment, that appears to be overcoming the levels of financial insecurity.
How are you telling your story? As you tell your story, this year more than ever, it’s important to see how the story is a conversation. We are in this together. Make sure your conversation is about Situation, Impact, and Collective Action
Situation – Be transparent!
Let your audience know what your COVID story has been like, how it’s effecting your organization, and what your role has been to help the community you effect throughout it all.
Transparency is key.
Let them in on the transitions, the struggles.
We are all have made massive transitions this year.
Impact – Focus on what really matters
This year has be tumultuous. However, the resilience of the human spirit has proven to be strong this year.
When you tell your story, connect with your supporters on the things they hold dear to their heart this year – community and justice – and tell them what they can do to help.
As you express byour organization’s story, ask yourself… How am I providing my supporters an opportunity to express their personal agency?
Let your supporters know what will happen if they monthly subscribe in donations with your organization. Keep them updated.
Giving is a way that people are coping – taking action in their environment.
Don’t just say “there is a need,” but spend time speaking into the goods that this donor can do by pitching in today!
Collective Action – Rally at this moment.
Make sure, especially this year, you help people rallying this moment of a season of giving. We all long and crave to do something for and with one another.
Create campaigns, digital events, and countdowns in which your supporters can see what they are apart of and what they are helping, jointly, to accomplish.
Contact Charity Fundraising for more information and help! With years of experience under our belts, and walking alongside thousands of nonprofit organizations, we are excited and passionate about helping you navigate these waters!