How Much Do You Care About Your Donors?

PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT I’m not challenging your goodness or integrity.

As a fundraiser, you work hard to support a cause that means a lot to you. You strive to connect your donors’ passions to the needs of people your organization cares for.

And you are successful by staying true and focused on your organization’s mission and vision. This is exactly what you should be doing. Good for you!

But what happens when others are finding solutions to the cause that is important to you in different ways or through other organizations?

Do you feel tempted to create a new program in order to win their support?

Do you try to convince your donor to change her mind on the type of program she supports by trying to convince her that your organization’s methods or goals are better? Or reach more people?

Or do you recognize that other organizations may be filling much-needed gaps in the bigger picture of the cause you care deeply about and choose to honour the passion of each individual making a difference in ways that are meaningful to them?

Maybe it’s not about who is better at what. Maybe it’s about each person doing their part and in doing so, achieving better results than anyone of us could have, alone.

What do you think?

The purpose of this blog is to facilitate discussions that will help us all to better engage with our communities. Your participation and feedback are most welcomed and valued. Please join the discussion below.


  1. Wyrd Smythe

    There is, perhaps, a fine line between generating support for your cause and being a salesman. The former is more about the good that can be done; the latter is more about separating people from their money, in which case it’s easy to lose sight of the why.

  2. Dennis Fischman

    It’s a real conundrum. The basic building block of most nonprofit organizations is the staff member. If another organization is doing good work you’re not doing, and they get donations that would otherwise have gone to you, a small loss of funding could lead to the loss of an entire position (and in some cases, the program that depends on that person being there). The best possible outcome is to convince donors that each organization is doing something indispensable and she should support both!

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