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20+ ideas to engage your trustees in fundraising

By CharityExcellence | 5 June 19 11:04am | Uncategorised

Originally published on LinkedIn here…

Many UK charities are struggling financially, yet only half of trustees are actively involved in fundraising.   Admittedly, many trustees find fundraising a challenge and others are simply not able to make a significant financial donation. However, there are lots of opportunities for them to support your work, many that are easy and anyone can do. In doing so, may learn a lot more about you than in a board meeting and, in all probability, enjoy themselves.   

·      A big donation may be beyond most of us, but there are lots of tax reliefs and almost anyone can make a small regular donation, or buy a raffle ticket.

·        Discuss with the CEO/fundraisers who in their own network might be engaged and help arrange an introduction or invite them to visit.

·        Review prospect/donor lists with CEO/fundraisers to identify people they know, whom they might help engage.

·        For large companies, they may be able to promote you for a staff volunteer programme, or charity of the year, even an introduction to discuss payroll giving. 

· Get some exercise by distributing posters/leaflets to organisations in your local community.

·        Do something good for themselves and you, at the same time. The marathon they’ve always wanted to run, or a fun run, or lose weight, or give smoking. Just Giving and Facebook Fundraisers make it easy.

· Invite guests/sell tickets/ or source auction items/raffle prizes for your events.

· Get competitive and inventive, by seeing who can source the best ‘money can’t buy’ (and doesn’t cost them anything) prize. I was once arrested in my office and spent a very pleasant afternoon drinking tea in a police cell and have also had a fascinating tour of a local sewerage works.

· Attend external meetings, where their presence may support the staff team.  

· Write thank you letters or make calls to donors.

· Represent you, or even speak at external events.

· Or, secure a speaking opportunity for you.

· Attend events/activities to help engage with guests and promote your work.

· Better still, invite friends/colleagues to come along as well.

· Appear in a short social media video clip, saying why they volunteer for you and describing the fantastic impact you have.

· Or, better still get someone well known in their network to do so, or provide a quote you can use.

· Promote your work via their own networks, such as articles in newsletters.

· Forward campaign e mails/newsletters to individuals in their own network who may be interested.

· Connect on social media, and like and share posts. Consider tabling a board paper explaining your social media activity and need for support, and/or circulating your platform links and, perhaps, having a fun trustee training session, for those who don’t know how to.

· Recruit social media champions to connect with you and promote you into new networks of potential supporters.

· Host a ‘friendraiser’ in their house/office and invite you along to talk about your work.

· Help by writing Christmas cards to key funders and stakeholders.

· Contact local shops/businesses and ask them to display a collection tin – and agree to collect and bank the money.

· For the cash poor/asset rich, consider leaving a gift in their will and, perhaps, even give you a quote for your legacy marketing. There are inheritance tax reliefs.

It may be helpful to use a version of this checklist for new trustee induction meetings, include elements when you brief them on events etc, and a round robin e mail at New Year resolutions time might also be worth considering.   

This is a resource from my free Charity Excellence Framework online toolkit for trustees/management, which enables you to deliver increased impact, financial resources and overall performance. It’s very easy to use, set-up is 2 mins, each of the 8 questionnaires 30 and there are 4000+ links to resources, including 200+ organisations that provide free goods, services and help to charities. To help fund it, I’m available for consultancy work. Find our more here.   

Photo by Sam Truong Dan on Unsplash

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