Fundraising for activists
All campaigns and projects need some materials and resources to keep them running and to succeed.
A fundraising plan
First of all you need to work out how much money you need and when you need it. This will give you your fundraising deadline. A good way to do this is to get everyone together and do a brainstorm on things the group needs. A brainstorm is a way of quickly gathering a large number of ideas.
Start by stating the issue. Ask people to say whatever comes into their heads as fast as possible - without censoring it. Write these ideas on a large piece of paper and discuss them. Which things are most important to get? When do you need them by?
Once you've got the list of things you need, do a second brainstorm on how to raise the cash and get the materials. Discuss these ideas and see which are most likely to work.
- Are there any ways in which you can get services and materials for free or cheaper?
- Do you have the necessary skills and the people to carry them out?
The type of fundraising you do will largely depend on the skills of the people involved. For example you might not find anyone to write a funding application, but you may know some artists who are willing to organise an auction of their artwork in support of your campaign.
Fundraisers not only help to raise resources but are also a great way of publicising your campaign and getting new people involved. If you are putting on any events make sure people know what it is about and how they can get involved in the campaign or project.
Depending on the type of fundraising it can be very helpful to have a bank account in the name of your group or campaign or project. People writing out cheques feel a lot more comfortable if the money doesn't go into an individual's bank account.
You will almost certainly need an account if you are applying to a funder for larger sums of money. The account doesn't need to cost anything - building societies' savings accounts are often a good choice.
To open an association or society account you will need to show the building society or bank a constitution and an excerpt of minutes of a meeting enabling you to open one. You can get a standard constitution from a local Council for Voluntary Service (CVS) or ask another local group. You will need to insert your own objectives.
Three things to bear in mind
- The more inspiring your campaign the more likely it is that people want to support you.
- You don't get what you don't ask for.
- Don't forget you only need to get enough money to do the job you've set yourselves. It's not a campaign aim to raise as much money as you possibly can.
Thanks to Seeds for Change for providing this article.
Article produced by the Choose Action Alliance.