juggling all the things including trust fundraising

Trust fundraising while spinning a thousand plates

Many of my clients are small and medium sized charities and non-profits.  The smallest of these have no staff and trustees / directors who are doing the operational work alongside strategic governance.  The juggle is real.  The struggle is real.  Many feel like they’re trust fundraising while spinning a thousand plates. For charities with one to a handful of employees, trust fundraising is something which often falls to someone with multiple other roles.  They might also for example be the CEO, the finance officer and […]

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Managing a trust fundraiser

Trust fundraising targets, KPI’s and expectations

It can be argued that fundraisers are the easiest people to performance manage because the metrics  (or metric) you use to measure them are black and white.   How much money have they raised?   Having been a fundraiser for many years, I would argue that using this metric alone can be misleading and was keen to express the danger of citing the ‘money raised’ stat in isolation when we published our benchmarking report on return on investment in fundraising back in May. So for […]

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Trust fundraising to ease cash flow

In trust fundraising circles, I can see why many professionals would deem the idea of using trust fundraising to ease cash flow as misleading / unhelpful clickbait.  The truth is, there are no quick wins out there.  Low hanging fruit (a phrase I hate because it makes me think of testicles) is not a thing.   Successful fundraising (not just trust fundraising) never happens in the zone of panic or timescale-related desperation.       That said, there are times when charities and non-profits need […]

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Personal development for fundraisers on a budget

Fundraisers are often as ambitious as they are frugal and as such I’ve put together five top tips for conducting your own personal development on an absolute shoestring. 1. Join fundraising communities: from the incredibly active ‘Fundraising Chat’ on Facebook – where people are talking everything from event venue recommendations to posting relevant fundraising news – to the free, quarterly London-based corporate fundraising network, there are plenty of knowledge hubs that you can tap into at the touch of a button. 2. Read blogs and […]

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How to improve your writing for charitable trusts

Early on in my career, I had the most incredible boss and mentor.  Amongst her many positive qualities, she was a stickler for jargon.  Being quite new into our charity. she noticed that we were guilty of more than our fair share of unnecessary ‘management speak’ and made it her mission to improve our writing for charitable trusts. As well as sending the fundraising team on a Plain English Campaign training course (BEST training I’ve ever done as a fundraiser and would hands down recommend), […]

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We need to talk about The Archers…

The Ambridge Conservation Trust, rewilding, a lack of partnership working and why Peggy has probably received some poor advice…. I am sat here opposite my darling partner (in life and work) quietly blogging about The Archers, specifically, the Ambridge Conservation Trust. He hates The Archers about as much as I love it.  For me, it delivers a brief window of respite in my busy world (though the recent foray into Brian and Jennifer’s sex life was a bit of a shock).  For him, it represents […]

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Keeping the spark alive – fundraising when you’re uninspired

Never mind the seven-year itch, apparently the average UK trust fundraiser stays in their post for only 18 months before moving on. I find this really sad (but I have been there myself and I do get it). Fundraising is a long game which needs consistent application over many years.  But how do you keep the spark alive  and what can you do about your fundraising when you’re uninspired? I only stayed in my first two fundraising jobs for this length of time before moving […]

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Return on investment in fundraising – riding the highs and the lows

How being an ‘objective fundraiser’ can reduce stress, improve wellbeing and make you great at your job Guest post by Cat Perrin Last month I shared on social media ‘What Good Looks Like – UK Fundraising Benchmarking 2019’ produced by Caroline and Tony of LarkOwl. I had the absolute joy of working with Caroline when I was Head of Fundraising and Communications at Broadway (which later merged with St Mungos). I commend her and Tony for taking on the challenge of providing updated figures on […]

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Productivity tips for fundraisers who are feeling exhausted and overwhelmed

Before the summer holidays, I found myself counting down the days a little bit.  I was conscious that I hadn’t had more than a long weekend off work since Christmas.  Up until July, I’d been working on four capital projects.  Keen to deliver outstanding quality fundraising for each of my clients, I was conscious that I was working through a period of intensity, possible to maintain in the short term, but unsustainable in the long term.  I was in need of either a set of […]

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When not to call ahead: your guide to not annoying trusts and foundations

I believe very strongly that we should be contacting potential trusts and foundations in advance of making a written application.  You can read my thoughts here.  This opinion has been recently decried in some online forum discussions with naysayers expressing scepticism at the need to start to build these early relationships.   Things I’ve heard: “Funders don’t like it” “I don’t want to annoy anyone” “It’s all on their website anyway” What I suspect these people are really saying: “I’m too nervous to make the […]

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