In this series, we take a look at the current news impacting the nonprofit sector, specifically fundraising. Our intention is not to be reactive, but to be proactive in our analysis of the news and consider how fundraising and philanthropic efforts can improve outcomes and adapt to meet the times.
This week: For All of Us in Philanthropy, the Moment of Rebuilding Is Here, Boynton Beach Hospital Shares Findings of Successful Fundraising Year, Businesses and Philanthropy Unite To Fight Racial Wealth Gap, How To Avoid Security Breaches In The Nonprofit Sector, and There’s More Room For Big Gifts In 2021.
For All of Us in Philanthropy, the Moment of Rebuilding Is Here (Via Chronicle of Philanthropy)
Philanthropy had a big year. We gave more and faster. We changed our systems, responded to racism and economic distress with greater seriousness. And we have done it without any of our usual trappings — no fancy offices, no flying to conferences in nice hotels, no going out to lunch with colleagues. We have done it from relative comfort — many of us in homes outside of the city where we work. And even after this year of economic distress across the country and the world, many of us end this year not only with our endowments intact but in most cases sitting on more money than we’ve had in a decade.
Analysis: Even as we continue to return to a relative normal, going back to the old way of doing things is becoming less and less of an option for nonprofits. Going back to work in person may be in the cards, but the landscape in which we approach donors and their interests has fundamentally changed. Embracing this change is crucial for future success.
Barbara James, the executive director of Bethesda Hospital in Boynton Beach, said she’s always believed in giving back and mentoring. Now, she’s sharing her knowledge on how the hospital was able to pivot and fundraise successfully in a very trying time. “I realized almost immediately that we needed to engage the community,” said James. “I am a seasoned fundraiser, so I have done this for 35 years.” James said she’s proud of her team and their early efforts to engage donors during a very difficult time.
Analysis: It feels redundant to use the word "unprecedented" at this point, but during these unprecedented times, sharing experiences and knowledge about how to win is truly at the heart of the nonprofit industry. Our jobs revolve around helping those in need, and there has never been a greater need to share what we have learned.
The CEOs of Starbucks and Goldman Sachs will join leaders from philanthropy and academia in a new initiative to address the racial wealth gap in the United States. The initiative is called NinetyToZero, so named for the roughly 90% wealth gap between white and Black Americans. Its leaders describe the goal as providing a roadmap for organizations to “counteract centuries of discrimination, segregation, and financial exploitation,” according to the group’s launch plans announced Tuesday.
Analysis: We have seen a resurgence in corporate giving in the past year, but more importantly, there has been a rise in corporate activism. Corporate members are becoming more aligned with the causes they are donating to, setting the scene for sustained giving at a high level.
The success of nonprofit organizations and higher education institutions is predicated on trust between donors, alumni, and students rallying toward a common goal. Data breaches are proliferating at an accelerated—frankly, alarming—rate. More and more employees are working from home and accessing both their organization's and constituents' data systems from personal computers, mobile, and IoT devices, and home networks. While remote work has provided companies with several key benefits, the potential for a breach or cyberattack can be increased by the fragmentation of a company network.
Analysis: Cybercriminals have evolved beyond many legacy security solutions meaning that keeping donor data safe requires something that security has long passed over: proactive defense. Solutions like Gravyty Guard can prevent data exfiltration or accidental data loss without getting in the way of employees just trying to do their jobs.
There’s More Room For Big Gifts In 2021 (Via NonProfit Times)
Major donor giving jumped by 21% between 2019 and 2020, according to the Major Donor Generosity Report from Atlanta-based donor fundraising consultancy Westfall Gold. That’s not a ceiling. The report’s authors believe there are more potential major contributors within nonprofits’ donor files. The jump in major donations was spurred, in part, by a robust stock market and strength in certain sectors of the U.S. economy despite higher unemployment and slowdowns due to the coronavirus pandemic. At fundraising events tracked by Westfall Gold, average major gift amounts jumped from $132,975 in 2019 to $162,437 in 2020.
Analysis: Like I said earlier, embracing change will be the secret to finding ways to win in the upcoming year. Financial situations for many donors have changed - and for many, they have improved drastically. There is incredible potential to see huge gains in giving, and ultimately, it comes down to understand where your donors are and communicating what their gift would mean.
Interested in seeing how Gravyty can kickstart your fundraising efforts? Talk to a Gravyty specialist today and learn what artificial intelligence can do for you.