Ah, the busy fundraising season! We did some searching and surfing this week to offer you several new considerations on your fundraising work and plans for the year ahead. Take a moment with your favorite hot or cold holiday beverage and consider these.
Help those poor, freezing Norwegians. A humorous look at international aid has gone viral just this week here. The video is humorous, but there is a serious message. The point is that images of helpless Africans are just as inaccurate as the idea of helpless freezing Norwegians. A lot of Africans cannot relate to all-too-prevalent patronizing videos and development initiatives. The video’s producers cleverly convey that fundraising should not be based on exploiting stereotypes and that media should have more respect in portraying suffering children. “We want to see more nuances,” they write on its website. “We want to know about positive developments in Africa and developing countries, not only about crises, poverty and AIDS. We need more attention on how western countries have a negative impact on developing countries.”
Tomorrow’s philanthropists, today. An exploding trend in U.S. philanthropy is nurturing children to be donors now; a number of new nonprofits are focused on this important goal. A Huffington Post piece earlier this month from Paul Schmitz outlines his approach in this process with his own kids. “My final reflection is that teaching philanthropy should also be about teaching empathy and justice. It should not be a prideful activity, but one that helps kids imagine what life might be like in other circumstances and feel humble about the privileges they have. Yes, they should be proud about their giving, but that pride should ideally translate to more desire to help others and address injustices in our communities, nation, and world. My children are still young so this is still an experiment, but I am hopeful they will continue to grow in their empathy, generosity, and commitment to social justice as they get older,” he writes. See the whole post here.
How effectively are you weaving cross-generational donor perspectives into your plans for 2013? A study on the connections between age and donor behavior released earlier this fall reports that younger donors described themselves as much more random and peer motivated in their giving, in contrast to older donors who described themselves as more premeditated. Specifically, younger donors are more likely to support a charity when friends or family ask versus the charity asking them. They consider much of their giving relatively random based upon their emotional reaction to something in the media, or based upon who asks. Older donors have a well established commitment to their primary charities. They have a budget set aside for charitable giving, and know the organizations they plan to give to. This suggests that it is harder for a new charity to break in with older donors, but once you secure them, they are quite committed.
Continue reading this Nonprofit TIP at richardmale.com.
Reprinted with permission from Richard Male and Associates, www.richardmale.com, 303-355-2919.