What We Can Learn From Our Global Fundraising Neighbors
Continuing our coverage of the Association of Fundraising Professionals 47th International Conference held in Baltimore last month, Andrew Mosawi, vice president of international business development for Blackbaud, shares insights from his presentation, "The State of European Fundraising and What the U.S. Can Learn From It."
It is always a useful and productive experience to spend time in a new environment. That is the reason we fundraisers like to go to conferences. AFP, CASE, IFC, NTEN are great events that give us opportunities to get together, collaborate, learn and ultimately return home with ideas and best practices that will help our organizations achieve their goals.
What if we could extend this knowledge sharing beyond our own borders? What if we could learn how fundraisers in Bolivia deal with the lack of postal or banking systems? How did a Dutch organization generate more than 500,000 monthly donors? How are Italian organizations using digital media to drive results? How could we, wherever we are located, learn from our fundraising cousins on the other side of the planet?
Working for a global software company that only serves nonprofits, I am lucky enough to spend a great deal of time traveling and talking to nonprofits around the world. What has become obvious to me during my travels and my experience living internationally is the similar passion, drive and optimism that nonprofits around the world share with each other. There may be differences in fundraising styles and techniques from country to country, but the philosophy and passion remain the same. We also, as a global fundraising community, share many of the same challenges and concerns.
The State of the Nonprofit Industry (SONI) is the leading market research survey of several thousand fundraising organizations across multiple countries in Europe, Asia Pacific and North America. The survey focuses on issues critical to today’s nonprofits, including operational issues, technology, accountability and fundraising. This research has enabled us to assess the differences between fundraising in different parts of the world and track the trends over the years.