Once again, I’d like to welcome back Maureen Carruthers (pictured at left).  Maureen is a non-profit consultant, and the force behind the excellent blog “Low Hanging Fruit Communication” which covers many topics including social media for non-profits.

Maureen’s goal is to help nonprofit leaders reach their right people more quickly so their organizations have a greater impact,  She has over ten years experience working in and around nonprofit organizations, most recently as the Workforce Development Program Manager for the Dayton Tooling and Manufacturing Association, where she managed a robot competition based on theBattleBots television series. Previously, she managed the Orchestra Forum program for theInstitute for Cultural Policy and Practice and served as House Manager for the Delaware Theatre Company.

I have spent some time on Maureen’s blog, and I highly recommend you check her site out.  I learned a lot!  You can even sign up for Maureen’s free e-class and newsletter.

 

Jump-start your Fundraising

Great fundraising is not just about raising money.

Great fundraising is an integral part of the way sustainable organizations connect to their communities.  When done right, your fundraising efforts actually pull people closer to the heart of the organization.   These efforts not only raise money, they also serve as a form of outreach and, in the best of cases, the actual act of fundraising can directly support your mission.

That kind of fundraising is amazing, but it’s not free.

When you are just starting out and don’t have two pennies to rub together, it’s hard to imagine getting to a point where you can spend the time, energy and money required to raise funds at that level.  So hard, that some people just give up, and others use the little bits of money they do raise to just scrape by –even though doing so means they will never have the impact they hoped for.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

What you need is a way to raise money–outside of the money you are raising to support your current mission– that can be set-aside to support the kind of capacity required for great fundraising–as well as  great outreach and mission-work.

How to Raise Money

(When you don’t have any money)

That’s where this guide, “How to Raise Money (When you don’t have any money) comes in.  It is not a final solution for your fundraising woes, but rather, a guide to your first steps.  This book includes 150 ways you and your current supporters can start raising money right now without a donor database, without a lot of specialized training–sometimes, even without much planning.  Once you have this extra money, you can start to explore your options for building a more sustainable plan.

Will it only work for nonprofits?

Of course not!  Most of the ideas in the guide will work for anyone needing to raise start-up funds.  Just keep in mind there are different restrictions in different areas about who can raise money in what way.  If your organization is not registered as an official charity or non-profit, or if you are not officially connected to the organization for which you are raising funds, some of these ideas might be off-limits for you, especially the ones that involve gambling.  Make sure you know what’s cool and what’s not where you live before getting started.

No Excuses

When you are worried about how to pay for the basics,  it feels impossible to justify spending money on capacity building.  And yet, the only way to break out of that place is to spend time, energy, and usually money, building the systems you need to work in more sustainable ways.

That sucks and not just for you.

Because of this dilemma, amazing people with amazing ideas give up their dreams everyday.  They get tired of the struggle and walk away.  When that happens, the world loses the ideas and organizations that might have made it a safer, cleaner, happier, more beautiful and generally better place to live.

Let’s both do what we can to keep that from happening:

For my part, I’m offering this guide for free so lack of money won’t be the reason you stay stuck where you are.

For your part, download the guide, and start raising the money you need to build an organization that will be making the world better for years to come.

Hey that totally worked!

The final step of using the guide is to come back to this page and tell us all about your experience.  If that’s you, leave a comment below to tell us:

  • Who you are and what cause you support
  • Which idea or ideas you used to raise your funds
  • How much you raised
  • Bonus:  How to you plan to use the funds?
Be Sociable, Share!

Posted on 20 September 2011

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