Major Donor Kick Start
British Exploring Society (BES) was going through a transitional time as an organisation, looking to become a more relevant youth development charity. To do this they needed reduce their reliance on trust fundraising by enthusing past expedition participants and new donors to become significant givers to help them expand. They had an old list of prospects, but had not taken steps towards engaging them due to being a small team with limited time. They didn’t have a clear fundraising message for donors, nor costed projects or aspirations. This was holding them back from communicating with potential donors.
Money Tree Fundraising analysed historic donors and reviewed BES’s potential networks. We were able to identify three key audiences and provide guidance on how to approach each. We worked with BES to develop a case for support, which acted as the framework for donor communication, in line with their new brand. The key messages from the case were highlighted and practised in two training sessions with their staff and Development Board.
It would not have been possible to pull together all the elements required for a sustainable major donor programme without external support. The process that Money Tree Fundraising went through gave focus to the team, worked with them to clarify their fundraising ask and left staff believing that major donor fundraising will be integral to the organisation’s growth.
With Money Tree Fundraising’s help British Exploring Society has developed a more confident ask and a tailored cultivation plan and has prioritised and approached key major donor prospects. Active engagement of four original prospects has led to one major gift to date, while two remain good prospects. These gifts have given BES a platform to grow the organisation and work with many more young people in the future. The Development Board are also now more actively engaged in fundraising.
“The team were a fantastic support in helping us to clarify our direction and generally understand more about the art of Major Donor fundraising. Mike was also a pleasure to work with.”Jess Ritchie