|The season of giving is officially upon us. What a great time of year! People caring about their neighbors, and generosity for the community comes pouring out. However, let’s not sugar coat it, this can all become overwhelming. Fundraisers know that philanthropists feel extra generous this time of year, and they look to capitalize upon those warm, fuzzy feelings.
Organizations would be fools not to take advantage of this season. About one third of all giving takes place at the end of the year. Twelve percent occurs in the last three days of the year! For you statistics fanatics, here are some more interesting facts about fundraising and year-end giving.
As a consumer and donor, there are ways to minimize the stress that may come from this intense donor cultivation season. First, decide what issues are most important to you. Proactively make donations to the agencies you most want to support. It feels great to give with intentionality! Then when you are faced with an overwhelming amount of requests you can politely decline and let them know you have already made your seasonal contributions to causes you are passionate about.
Another tip, especially for those who hate to say ‘no’ to any good cause, is to set aside funds specifically for “pop-up” opportunities. Then you have a plan for the wrapping paper being sold by the youth choir or the round-up request at the convenience store. Build those unplanned donations into your budget. That way you can give cheerfully and without worry of overextending yourself.
Finally, keep in mind that no apologies are needed. If you can’t or choose not to give to a cause, that’s your prerogative. No good agency would want you to overextend yourself. And the best organizations want to cultivate donors who genuinely care about their work.
Nonprofits and fundraisers love a joyful giver. By creating a plan and sticking to it, that can be you! Your plan allows you to give on YOUR terms and make a difference for causes that you care deeply about. Want to read more about conscientious giving? Check out A Generous Heart by Kristen Corning Bedford.
I’m thankful for those of you who read my little musings! Have a grateful day.
Kim is a mom, lover of being active and the outdoors,