Category: Dear Kim

Board Member Paying Staff Person Extra

Dear Kim,   I chair the board of a small religious organization.  Each employee has to raise a certain amount toward their salary and this amount is set by the board, as are the salaries. Recently it came to my attention that one employee is receiving additional support from a board member who provides a […]

Finding the Time for Grassroots Fundraising

Dear Kim, I have tried to follow the advice in the Grassroots Fundraising Journal and from you, Andy Robinson, Stephanie Roth, and other grassroots fundraising experts. What you all say makes sense. Having said that, I hope you don’t find my question rude: where do you find the time to really implement all this advice? […]

Whoops! None of Our Year-end Donors Were Thanked

Dear Kim,

I am the chair of the board of an organization with a big problem. We had a great year-end appeal and a lot of people gave money. As we are getting ready to put together our spring appeal, I have learned that none of them were thanked.

Deductions: Volunteer Time, Honorariums & Gala Tickets

Dear Kim, Our tiny nonprofit has an accountant who has been doing our bookkeeping for free. I told her she should deduct the value of her time from her taxes and, to my great surprise, she told me that is not legal. Why would that be? She could have made money during that time from […]

Is the Bottom 98% Giving Less?

Dear Kim, I have been reading a lot about the concentration of wealth and giving among the top 2%. Some articles claim there is a parallel decline in the number and level of people making smaller gifts. What are the implications of this for fundraisers? And do you believe that the bottom 98% of people […]

Small, Local Groups Struggling to Keep Donors

Dear Kim, I work in an arts program that serves very poor public schools in a very poor state. Without us, 2nd -5th graders in public schools in our area would have NO arts program at all. We have no government funding and little foundation funding. We have built a base of donors and we […]

Re-asking In Honor/Memory Donors

Dear Kim, We receive a significant number of donations in honor/memory of individuals. Most are one time donations. Is it proper to add these donors to our ask list? ~Alone with My Memories Dear Memories, You ask a great question for organizations like yours who get a lot of these gifts, but the answer is […]

The Pros and Cons of Engaging Volunteers in Fundraising

Dear Kim, For years I have been told that board members and volunteers need to be trained and enlisted in reaching out, meeting with donors, thanking them and asking for support. I work somewhere that has prioritized that. But all of that comes with the cost of a lot of staff time. Some volunteers aren’t […]

Preparing for the Trump Administration

Dear Kim, How bad are things going to get under President Trump and what can we do to prepare? ~Sick at Heart Dear Heart, First I have to say I am not a psychic. I have no idea how bad things are going to get. For some people, things are already bad. We have not […]

Why Development Directors Leave

Dear Kim, Our development director left suddenly, saying she had found an easier job and could not pass up the opportunity to do good work and not have to work as hard as she had to for us. We have no one to run our year-end campaign. Do you have suggestions for where we can […]