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Is the Pandemic the New Nonprofit Horror Story?

As a fan of the good, classic, make-you-jump-in-your-seat horror film, I can appreciate a suspenseful plot. However, scary times and suspense are not good for your nonprofit, especially during COVID-19. The best way to avoid scary fundraising results is ongoing communications with your donors, your board, your volunteers and staff. No one likes to be kept in the dark.

The first half of this year was extremely challenging. A recent article in the Chronicle of Philanthropy shows giving dropped six percent in the first quarter of 2020. This translated into $25 billion in lost revenue for nonprofits in the U.S. (Click here for the article.)

Create your own honest, positive narrative with a solid fundraising plan and meaningful donor stewardship activities. Share your successes and challenges and give people the opportunity to help and give them hope for the future.

We can share a positive outlook with our donors and others by letting them know about these promising indicators:

· Donations under $250 have increased. Congress voted to allow people who don't itemize to deduct up to $300 in cash charitable giving on their 2020 taxes.

· Smaller, less-expensive virtual fundraisers are gaining in popularity and providing opportunities for nonprofits to stay connected with donors and raise needed funds.

· According to Giving USA, annual giving in the United States rose by 2.4% over the previous year.

· Historically, charitable giving rebounds within 12 – 18 months of disasters or recessions.

The current climate can be as scary as an abandoned house at midnight, but we don’t need to go in alone. Bring others along by showing your confidence in their leadership and your team. Bring your donors into the light by sharing the latest news about your organization. Together you can hold off the ghouls and goblins of disease and recession until the dawn brings an end to this monstrous pandemic.


Michelle Crim, CFRE

Dynamic Development Strategies can help. We offer coaching and fundraising services for our nonprofit clients. We specialize in startup and smaller nonprofits because we understand your challenges. Please contact us for more information.

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