Getting to the Heart of Major-Gifts Giving
But stand back for a minute. Anything that powerful carries a lot of potential danger. Unchecked, the influence of money can grow until it strangles a person’s soul.
As a fundraiser, you help loosen money’s hold on people by encouraging them to give it away. When people give away their money, they begin to short-circuit its potentially negative influence in their lives. Your work of fundraising can spare them from the consequences of ultimately falling for money’s sinister game. Giving also conveys to the giver a powerful sense of having lasting significance.
The people who support your organization financially share your values and want to participate in your work. Many might even wish they could do all that good work themselves. But they know they lack the training, talent, expertise, stamina, time or opportunity it takes. Or they have those things but simply lack the motivation. Or they don’t want to disrupt their lives. Regardless, they still want to be an extension of your work.
So they give. They take the money they’ve earned through their own work, talent, skill and labor, and use it to fund your organization’s work, talent, skill and labor. Giving allows them to know they’re doing something significant. Filtering the money they earned doing their work into your organization’s work, no matter how much they give, makes their jobs — and their lives — more meaningful.
2. Giving blesses the giver. When donors give, they rise above the fray. They become deeply and immediately involved in a life beyond their own. They also confirm their deepest and truest feelings, because their hearts — the symbol of their deepest emotions and all that they care most about — guide their behavior.
In this sense, donors become linked at a spiritual level with the causes they support. The good that donors’ gifts accomplish actually becomes part of their lives. When people give to something, they are much more likely to feel connected to it. When people give to your group and good things are accomplished, the hearts and lives of the donors are deeply blessed.
If you’re hanging with Richard it won’t be long before you’ll be laughing.
He always finds something funny in everything. But when the conversation is about people, their money and giving, you’ll find a deeply caring counselor who helps donors fulfill their passions and interests. Richard believes that successful major-gift fundraising is not fundamentally about securing revenue for good causes. Instead it is about helping donors express who they are through their giving. The Connections blog will provide practical information on how to do this successfully. Richard has more than 30 years of nonprofit leadership and fundraising experience, and is founding partner of the Veritus Group.
Jeff Schreifels is the principal owner of Veritus Group — an agency that partners with nonprofits to create, build and manage mid-level fundraising, major gifts and planned giving programs. In his 32-plus year career, Jeff has worked with hundreds of nonprofits, helping to raise more than $400 million in revenue.