“Fearless Fundraising” is a series on church fundraising by Charles LaFond, an Episcopal Priest, author and master potter living on a farm in New Mexico. Charles is the author of many books including Fearless Church Fundraising and now, Fearless Major Gifts: Inspiring Meaning-making. For more information, videos and model documents go to fearlesschurchfundraising.com.
Summer is for fun. Watermelon, beaches, coconut ice cream, shallow novels, cookouts. But summer is also the time for churches and nonprofits to do the work of case development. Let’s face it, you are not going to get much fundraising done in the summer months. People are too busy with summer fun. So use the time wisely and write in the relative freedom of the summer-slowness.
Too many churches wait until Fall when the panic of the campaign implementation is upon them and by which time it is too late to write something meaningful. So use the summer months to outline, draft and produce the campaign brochure for next fall.
There is no set way to draft your campaign brochure. If you have a young congregation you may want a video or a video version of your printed one if you have young and older members in your congregation. You may even want to break it up into eight parts, sending one part each week by email and in the bulletin and then printing the whole thing for use I those last few weeks when things get intense and you need more material to turn heads and hearts.
Jesus came to earth as ‘the word made flesh.” Words are important. They communicate. So, communicate your mission through a brochure or some other written or filmed tool and use it. Send it. Send it over and over and over again. Make it a tool of which you are proud. Even a tiny church can use a word processing template to produce a tri-fold. Find a 12 year-old who likes to write.
But use the summer to get this done. If you are on your game, the Spring was for photos, planning, theme design, color design and case material collection (interviews, focus groups, etc.) and the Fall far too late. For more information on building your case for support go here (pdf)