How Can You Fundraise with Limited Resources?

Well, my first piece of advice would be to download my free Top 10 Tips on Fundraising!

The limited resources in the title of this post refer to staff and time as opposed to money, as fundraising on a small scale shouldn’t cost you a huge amount of money.  It will, however, cost something, even if it’s only factoring in the time of the person delivering your fundraising needs, postage and stationery.  However, if you are intending to raise a large portion of your annual income, you really need to consider making a proper investment in fundraising by either recruiting a fundraiser or paying a freelancer to fundraise for you.  Either way, if no-one has any experience of fundraising in your organisation and you want to make this a regular aspect of your income, you should consider getting professional advice to help with your planning and organisation.

However, many small organisations need to raise money to deliver a few key projects and need to use the resources available to them to achieve this.  Perhaps you have some resources to invest in a freelance fundraiser?  Or maybe recruit a part-time member of staff?  But what if neither option applies?  In that case, you need to consider who in your organisation has the skills and time to fundraise for you.  And fundraising for your organisation will include researching potential donors; identifying key projects that you need and, as important, that will appeal to potential donors; developing a case for support for your organisation – why should a donor give funding to you, what will you use it for, how much do you need and when do you need it by; writing fundraising bids and meeting with potential donors – and of course, writing thank you letters and follow up reports.  You may have a member of staff who can take on this role – or a few who can split the workload between them.  Or perhaps you have a volunteer or board member with experience (or the willingness and necessary skills) to develop this for you? 

Where do you go from there?

My top 3 tips would be:

  1. Decide who is responsible for fundraising in your organisation – and make sure they have the time available to achieve your fundraising aims
  2. Get Organised – look at your systems and determine how they will support your fundraising (and develop some new ones for fundraising, such as looking after your donors)
  3. Make sure your messages are clear and consistent – your fundraising should sit well with your overall vision and objectives or donors won’t understand who you are and what you are aiming to achieve.

Do you have any other tips – or questions – for organisations who really are starting from scratch with no previous experience in this area?

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