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Spring Brings Out the Best. Especially Volunteers.


Volunteers give their time because it makes them happy. How do you keep them that way?

What Do Volunteers Want?
Nonprofit Charitable Orgs Spotlight10

Is $1 Million Too Much to Pay for a Top Fundraiser?

Monday April 21, 2014
Dollar Sign

Fundraising is a complicated task. No less so in these days of constricted budgets, an economy that is still struggling with the aftermath of a recession, and when there is more competition among nonprofits for what money is available for philanthropy.

Still, as the Chronicle of Philanthropy reports, some salaries for a few top fundraisers have reached new heights, even going beyond $1 million. Here are some of the top earners:


Best Links: Heartbleed Tips for NPOs, Fundraising Math, Questioning Facebook Reach

Wednesday April 16, 2014
Linking ideas.

Nonprofit Blog Carnival

The Work behind Our Work: Your Methods & Wants for Nonprofit Blog Carnival. Nancy Schwartz of Getting Attention! is in charge of the April Carnival. She wants your back story. Write about "productivity, planning, and/or getting great ideas out of your head and into action." Conversely, write about what is holding you or your organization back.

Fundraising, Marketing, and More

8 things donors expect from nonprofit communications - Ben Stroup for LinkedIn. Your donors are busy. Don't irritate them with too many messages or irrelevant ones. Great, succinct tips about what to do and not.

A Donor at Rest Tends to Stay at Rest: 6 Ways to Motivate Donors - Willis Turner at Fundraising Success. Maybe I've been watching too much of the new "Cosmos," but this physics-based post really spoke to me. How do you motivate donors to take action? Lots of ideas here. Follow up with Research reveals four simple ways your not-for-profit can motivate donors from Connecting Up.

What "We Can't Afford Fundraising Software" Really Costs You - Bloomerang. Oh the ultimate pain of "free." It includes frustration and a black hole of information about your donors. On the same theme, don't miss Pamela Grow's The Cult of Free Will Kill Your Fundraising.


How a Food Bank Keeps Volunteers Happy and Coming Back for More

Tuesday April 15, 2014
Happy volunteers at the Care and Share Food Bank for Southern Colorado.

If you stumble upon the Facebook Page for the Care and Share Food Bank for Southern Colorado, you might be amazed that it is so active, with over 4,000 likes, 28 talking about, and 463 "were here."

I'd guess that it's because this food bank has a loyal cadre of volunteers that provided more than 30,000 hours of service last year. The food bank is proud of that number and has put it front and center of its FB Page and its website this month.

"The Chronicle of Philanthropy" was also impressed enough to use this organization as a case study recently as it trained its eye on effective volunteer management.

The Care and Share Food Bank is enjoying volunteer success for several reasons.

First, the issue is hot. Hunger has become a headliner in the press. Consequently, more people than ever want to help, either by donating or volunteering, or both.

The Care and Share Food Bank only has 40 employees, but an increasing number of people who want to volunteer. Coloradans are also very familiar with disasters such as wildfires and floods, where the work of organizations like the Food Bank are important.

In fact, this food bank went from a little over 4,000 volunteers in 2010 to 8,500 in 2013. Those volunteers helped the Food Bank deliver 18.6 million pounds of food in 2013, up from 11.5 million just a few years before. More than 100,000 people were helped last year by the Food Bank.

Second, the Care and Share Food Bank has embraced volunteers. It has an open arms policy and tries to place everyone who is willing to work. There are families with children who volunteer, students, people from civic groups and faith organization, as well as court-ordered volunteers. The Food Bank has also partnered with 67 corporations and their employee volunteer programs.

How do they do it? By placing volunteers at the center of the organization. For instance:


Best Links: Twitter Changes, Lessons from Letterman and Fallon, Data vs Relationships

Wednesday April 9, 2014
Jimmy Fallon writing one of his thank you notes.

Nonprofit Blog Carnival

The Work behind Our Work: Your Methods & Wants for Nonprofit Blog Carnival. We're all busier than ever! So how do we get so much done? Nancy Schwartz of Getting Attention! is in charge of the April Carnival. She wants your back story. Write about "productivity, planning, and/or getting great ideas out of your head and into action."

Fundraising, Marketing, and More

Get More Out of Your Fundraising Donation Page by Acting Like an Online Store - Christine Schaefer of Salsa Labs for Fundraising Success. Branding and price points are things commercial sites do very well. Schaefer has examples of nonprofit donation pages that take their cues from online stores and turn those elements to doing good.

3 Smart Strategies to Boost Your Online Fundraising - Joe Garecht for GuideStar Blog. Joe simplifies the confusion around online fundraising. If your head is spinning from all the possibilities and demands, do these three things for some rapid improvements.

Dr. Adrian Sargeant's 7 Principles of Donor Loyalty - Tom Ahern for Bloomerang. Revisit the basics of donor retention. Tom expands on the brilliant ideas of Adrian Sargeant and includes several links to supplemental information. Find out about the "big third dot" and why your "boilerplate" could be killing your donations. Ahern is in fine form here, bringing these classic principles to life.


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