In today’s episode of The Strategic Non-Profit, Trista McIver sits down with Gregory Ould from Blanket BC to discuss how to develop and maintain the connections within your Non-Profit community during these times of crisis.
Introducing Gregory Ould, Blanket BC Society
Gregory Ould is CEO of Blanket BC Society, founded over fifteen years ago with the mission to help shelters throughout British Columbia. Gregory and his son Ben focus on offering collected donations of blankets, scarves, hats, toques, mitts, and gloves to shelters and people in need – free of charge, all year. They’ve recently reached an important milestone, having collected and distributed over 500,000 blankets throughout the entirety of their operation. Congratulations, Gregory and Ben!
Spread The Warmth
Regardless of your Not-for-profit’s mission, the importance of expressing gratitude to sponsors and other external sources of funding and donations is imperative to maintaining strong connections within your community.
Simple gestures such as sending a hand-written thank you card, a quick phone or video call just to check-in and see how they are. Even meeting face to face to shake their hand and again say, “Thank you – Your contributions are making a real difference to other people’s lives.” are essential to relaying your gratitude and remaining on your sponsor’s radar.
More so, adopting the approach of Friend Raising rather than Fund Raising can make the difference between the stagnation or continued success of your organization’s mission.
What do we mean by Friend Raising? Well, consider, what happens when your Government grant dries up? Securing funds and maintaining revenue streams is, of course, imperative to your operation. So what do you do now?
You need to expand your network, focus on cultivating new connections, and maintaining existing ones. At this stage, it’s beneficial to identify exactly what you want from your network and what you can give back in return; that way, you can relay your terms when approaching new sponsors.
Every “No” Brings You Closer to a “Yes”Nonprofits constantly face rejection. But it’s important to remember that every “No” brings you closer to a “Yes.” How you handle rejections is a true test of your character, so to keep moving forward and create a sustainable path, you need to be able to roll with the punches, as they say.
Overcoming rejection is vital to building relationships with donors who aren’t quite ready yet, regardless of whether your Nonprofit saves or changes lives on a daily basis. A key aspect to overcoming this roadblock is often just following up, checking in, and creating consistent dialogues with your prospect donors – you want to remain a bright light on their radar.
Since you’re here, why not continue your learning?