Sometimes there’s a gap between receiving money from donors and spending it – the space between, where something that says Thank You should be. I don’t know whether there are any statistics about it, but from conversations with fundraising colleagues and unofficial tests it seems a lot of non-profits – maybe even a majority – miss this critical step.
I suspect that sometimes, staff and volunteers are already so busy delivering services and getting money in the door that they aren’t able to put together any kind of donor recognition.
I also suspect that in some cases, good intentions get stuck behind lack of money and energy; no time to do it well, so it doesn’t get done at all.
I’ve been there; we all want what we do to be of high quality and look professional. But I’m beginning to believe that point of view can be wrong; it misses the point.
Sometimes the unpolished, the unprofessional, isn’t just all you need. It’s already perfect.
Remarkable ways to say Merci
I love getting mail from people and organizations I like. So I was thrilled to get a postcard one day from Small Change Fund – an organization I’ve written about and supported in the past.
I had made a small donation, and received this about the advocacy campaign I’d funded: “You rock and Fisher Bay is now a provincial park!”. Woohoo – I made a difference!
What more does your donor really need to know?
Earlier this week I learned about an organization called Fugees Family, an organization created by one woman who saw a need and decided to do something about it; Luma Mufleh is building a community around kids – refugee children now in the U.S. – who’ve survived war and are rebuilding their lives one step at a time.
Luma’s work has received a fair amount of attention lately; I read about it through blogger Marjorie Clayman (@MargieClayman) who is on a blogging hiatus until she reaches her goal: 400,000 new donors for this organization. I made a small contribution, and today in my email I found this.
It’s not flashy or seamlessly produced, it’s simple and real. It’s very sweet. And it gets the point across: Thank You.