Working in the voluntary sector
Working in the voluntary sector

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Working in the voluntary sector

Week 5: Introducing fundraising

Introduction

All voluntary organisations need funds to achieve their aims and carry out their activities. As you saw in Week 4, funds come from a variety of sources, from donations to contracts, and many involve considerable effort, such as writing applications and nurturing relationships with individuals and organisations. Some organisations have staff and departments whose main responsibility is to carry out all aspects of fundraising, whereas smaller organisations or groups tend to involve all their staff or volunteers in planning, writing grant applications and building relationships with donors.

There are many ways in which voluntary organisations might ask people or other organisations for money; for example, through street collections, jumble sales, events, and so on. Asking people for money inevitably has an ethical dimension: the people being asked may feel a degree of pressure or obligation, and some older or vulnerable people may feel they cannot say no. In recent years, some voluntary organisations have come under the spotlight for their highly pressurised fundraising approaches. Consequently, there have been calls for greater regulation of fundraising.

Even if you are not directly involved with fundraising, this week’s topics and issues will give you a greater understanding of the importance of effective and successful fundraising to your organisation. It will also provide you with the ethical context for asking people for money.

Start by watching this video in which Julie Charlesworth introduces you to Week 5.

Download this video clip.Video player: volb2_week5-640x360.mp4
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Transcript

JULIE:
Welcome to Week 5. Last week you looked at how to work with basic financial information, and this week you’ll explore how to get more income for your organisation through fundraising.
Fundraising is about persuading people to donate to your organisation and plays a key role in the voluntary sector. You’ll find out what fund raising is and the different methods available, such as face-to-face and online donations, as well as crowdfunding.
You’ll also look at the types of information needed for writing bids for funding and the challenges this presents, and why building relationships with donors at all levels is so important.
End transcript
 
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By the end of this week, you should be able to:

  • explain what fundraising is
  • know how organisations raise money from individuals and other organisations
  • explain the ethical challenges of fundraising
  • identify the skills involved in fundraising.
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