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Be Not Afraid

By January 12, 2009March 30th, 2014Development, Withisms

Or at least act like you’re not afraid…if you let fear drive your thinking it’s going to be a lot worse. The fear-driven non-profit that cuts fundraising and crawls into a hole will stay in their own recession one to two years after the general recession ends.~ Donor Power Blog January 5, 2009.

I’ve been talking with many staff and board members who are sharing their fear about potentially dismal, awful situations. The dismal and awful has not happened yet. They are forgetting that the development team is the place we all take our cues from on how to react. So, my advice is to keep talking about what is working at your organization and what is missing. Give quarterly updates this year to your donors instead of the usual annual update.

People will respond and give when they are ready.

How do I know that donors will give? Some of my clients have reported receiving record year-end contribution totals. In fact, one of the groups I work with reported that on the final day of the year, December 31, 2008, their on-line giving total for that one day exceeded $38,000! That’s how I know. Giving continues, even in economically challenging times, when you make it easy and compelling for donors to do it.


  • Here’s what I know to be true in the midst of a $16 million campaign that officially launched during the onset of the recession…keep asking. I truly believe that philanthropy, now more than ever, is the only way to transform fear into activism. It puts people back in the drivers seat with their money, to direct some of it to their highest ideals and commitments vs. reacting to the economy. Go for it, jump in and ask…I’ve generated nearly $500K in the past 8 weeks by staying true to course. There’s a leveling of the playing ground, millionaires and dollar-aires, all experiencing the same global impact of this economy. Get in there with them!

  • tlzonker says:

    Your inpiring message reminds me of a couple of quotes we’ve all heard at one time or another:

    It has been well said that our anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, but only empties today of its strength. – Spurgeon

    Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right! – Henry Ford

    Now we have another:
    “philanthtopy: the only way to transform fear into activism” – Lori Jacobwith

    Thank you Lori!

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