Many charities rely solely on the generosity of donors to fund the good work they do. If you work for a charity and are looking to raise funds or support through fundraising, it can be daunting knowing exactly where to start.
If you feel you don’t have the knowledge or expertise in-house, it can be beneficial turning to a fundraising consultancy for help and advice. If you’ve recently been asked to get involved with a charity’s fundraising, here is what you need to be aware of:
Be clear what your cause is
Some charities find it easier to get donations than others. Why? Well, sometimes it comes down to who or what the charity supports. Other times, it’s because you’re not clearly explaining to people what it is the charity does. People will feel inspired and motivated to donate if they understand the problem the charity is trying to resolve and how their donation will be used to achieve this.
Communicating the charity’s purpose or ‘mission statement’ can be done through a variety of ways, like emails, leaflets, newspaper adverts and video, so get creative! It’s important that every piece of marketing material you produce has a strong and coherent message.
It’s not always cash
Fundraising is not always solely about raising money for the charity. Fundraising can be used to encourage people to give up some of their spare time to help out at a charity fundraising event or to work in a charity shop, for instance.
Fundraising can also be used to get people or organisations to donate equipment, premises or free advice and support.
How to get donations
Technology has made it easier for charities to acquire donations from both a local and a global audience. If you’re stuck for ideas, here are some fundraising methods you can use to raise donations:
• marketing – letters to local businesses or individuals, leaflets in doctor’s surgeries or libraries, local or national newspapers adverts, social media
• fundraising events – sponsored run or swim, silent auction, themed dinner-dance, skydive
• gift aid – asking UK taxpayers to gift aid their donation, so you can claim tax relief on the gift or donation. Currently, charities are allowed to claim a maximum of 25p in every pound back from HMRC
• asking people to leave a charitable donation in their will
• corporate fundraising – asking a large business to raise funds or to donate resources (like their staff’s time) to the charity
• payroll giving – encouraging staff to donate to the charity through their payroll. The money is automatically deducted from their pay before tax is deducted
Is it legal?
The Fundraising Regulator is responsible for all charitable fundraising in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. They have created a set of standards for fundraising, which all charitable organisations must adhere to.
Fundraising is incredibly important to many charities and when done properly can yield great results. Hopefully, this guide has answered some of your questions, so you can now go out and raise much-needed support or funds for your charity.