Giving Goes Both Ways
As fundraisers, we often understandably focus on the tremendous impact a donor’s gift makes on the people who benefit from our programs.
Disaster victims are being rescued. Hungry families are being fed. Sponsored children can go to school. Wounded veterans are getting a fresh start. Animals are saved from abuse. Cancer patients have new hope for a cure.
All that’s true. And vitally important. It’s why we do what we do, and it’s why what we do works.
But that view alone is one-sided. It implies that the benefit of giving (as life-changing as it is) only goes one way: from donor through the nonprofit to the recipient.
That only tells half of the important story.
Giving is indeed transformational. But I contend that the transformation goes both ways. Clearly it benefits the recipient of a nonprofit’s programs in countless ways as illustrated above. But it also benefits the donor.
The donor exchange
When donors give, they also receive.
- They receive the joy of making a difference.
- They receive the privilege of partnering with you to make the world just a little better.
- In giving, they receive a sense of increased significance in their lives that, more often than not, dwarfs the significance they receive by getting.
Not bad. In fact, you could argue that the significance donors receive may even outweigh the cost of the gifts they make.
And you and your nonprofit are in the middle of this beautiful exchange. You’re the bridge between the donor and those who benefit from the programs funded by the gift.
By offering people the chance to give — the possibility of making a positive difference in the world — you bring significance to their lives!
Ask with enthusiasm
So be honored to ask. Don’t soft-pedal the ask or shirk the opportunity. Don’t bashfully or reluctantly ask. It demeans your cause, and it undervalues the gift you are offering to donors. Proudly state your case. Enthusiastically invite donors to partner with your organization to make a difference.