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Utilizing Volunteers in Fundraising (July 5, 2018)

Volunteers can be one of the best advocates for an organization’s mission when they truly believe in it. By using volunteers to raise funds for the organization, you are offering an added level of credibility to the organization. Additionally, volunteers are rewarded by seeing how their efforts have helped the organization to be successful.

Not all volunteers will excel at fundraising. Volunteers selected for fundraising should be committed to the organization’s mission, have connections to potential donors that do not exist or need strengthening, and have the desire to give their time for the specified purpose of fundraising. Consider the following qualities when selecting potential fundraising volunteers:

  • Good listeners - Volunteers should be able to listen to potential donors in order to address any of their concerns.
  • Motivators - Volunteers should be able to motivate potential donors about how their funding will be able to further the organization’s mission.
  • Ethical - Volunteers should be honest and pose integrity as they will come into contact with PII (Personally Identifiable Information).
  • Driven - Volunteers should be hard working and driven to complete the fundraising campaigns engaged in.
  • Ability to relate - Volunteers should be able to relate to potential donors on a personal level.

Once you have selected the right volunteers for fundraising, then you should clearly communicate your expectations, provide them with the tools for success and note your appreciation for the services that they are providing to the organization. Have a plan for your fundraising volunteers and set a goal that they can achieve. There are several types of fundraising that can be delegated to volunteers including, but not limited to, the following:

1.     Capital & Endowment Campaign

2.     Special Events

3.     Annual Contribution Funding

4.     Grant Application

5.     In-kind Contributions

6.     Pledge/Planned Giving

The type of fundraising to be accomplished by the volunteers should be communicated along with the expectations noted above. Train them on how to raise funds in accordance with the organization’s policies. Make sure to communicate regularly with fundraising volunteers, following up on their efforts and relaying the importance of their work and gratitude for their time.

By taking the time to fulfill volunteer fundraising positions with the right people and nurturing these relationships, an organization has the potential to increase their donor base beyond current expectations.

By Angela McNulty, CPA, MSA, at Myers, Brettholtz & Company, PA.  Angela can be reached at angela.mcnulty@mbcopa.com or 239.690.4246.

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