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Busy Volunteer's Guide to Fundraising

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In the Busy Volunteer's Guide to Fundraising, Kay Sprinkel Grace sets out to:

  • Open eyes and dispel a host of misunderstandings about raising money
  • Show that it doesn’t takes hours and hours of preparation to succeed at fundraising
  • Empower volunteers to get about the task at once
Price: $24.95


The Busy Volunteer's Guide to Fundraising

The Truths and Nothing But the Truths About Raising Money for Your Cause

When it comes to fundraising, how do you make the best use of your volunteers’ time?

You communicate exactly what they need to know to raise money - and no more.

In The Busy Volunteer’s Guide to Fundraising, Kay Sprinkel Grace homes in on “the truths and nothing but the truths” about what works in fundraising and what doesn’t.

Having worked with tens of thousands of volunteers for several decades, Grace knows better than to bog them down with pages and pages of theory.

Instead, she delivers the essential “how-to’s” in a jargon-free, one-hour-to-read book that achieves three things:

1) It opens eyes and dispels a host of misunderstandings about raising money

2) It shows that it doesn’t takes hours and hours of preparation to succeed at fundraising

3) It empowers volunteers to get about the task at once

If you want to make the most productive use of your volunteers’ time - and motivate them to raise money efficiently – then Kay Sprinkel Grace has drawn the blueprint you need.

Table Of Contents


1. Donors give to your organization because you meet needs, not because you have needs

2. Fundraising is as much about relationships as it is money

3. Tax deductibility, which most nonprofits can offer, isn’t a powerful incentive

4. Individuals are the largest source of gifts, not foundations and corporations

5. Special events aren’t the most effective way to raise money

6. To attract donors, you need to tell your organization’s story

7. Donors want to see the measurable impact you’re having

8. Yours doesn’t have to be a household name to attract a donor’s attention

9. For big gifts you need to ask in person

10. Don’t depend on publicity and advertising to raise money

11. People genuinely like to give

12. Donors come from every walk of life

13. Even if your worthy cause makes people uncomfortable, you can find support

14. You can raise substantial money even if you don’t know any wealthy people

15. Giving involves both the head and the heart

16. Almost everyone is uncomfortable with asking for money

17. Values, not wealth, determine a person’s willingness to give

18. There are no “right words” when asking

19. You have to give before you can ask

20. Always ask for a specific amount

21. You can ask donors to give more than once a year

22. Staff aren’t always the right or the best askers

23. Ethical consultants and fundraising hires don’t bring with them a list of people to solicit

24. It takes money to raise money in a campaign

25. You don’t need a powerful board of directors to be successful with fundraising

26. Everyone has to be involved in resource development: volunteers, board, and staff

27. Focus on all donors, not just big donors

28. Estate gifts come from donors at all levels

29. You can raise money even if you don’t have a stable of annual donors

30. Asking for a gift that’s too big is as bad as asking for one too small

31. We have no right to prejudge a donor’s willingness or ability to give

32. Not all campaigns require a feasibility study

33. All volunteers need fundraising training specific to their organization

34. All gifts deserve heartfelt gratitude

35. Those who support organizations with similar missions are likely to support yours

36. Fundraising has multiple objectives

37. You may need a consultant even if you have fundraising staff

38. Even in today’s fast-paced world, most donors still want to be cultivated

39. If your organization is struggling in its campaign, reexamine your case and your methods

40. Don’t expect a windfall gift, but be ready in case it comes

41. The more you do it, the more rewarding fundraising is

42. There’s plenty of philanthropy to go around

43. We’re public benefit corporations, not charities

A Final Word

About the Author

About the Author

Kay Sprinkel Grace is a skilled professional and articulate trend spotter in the nonprofit sector and a seasoned volunteer. Based in San Francisco, she is widely sought as a speaker across the globe. Her recent focus is on the swiftly changing face and fabric of philanthropy.

Kay’s consulting clients span the nonprofit sector: public media, arts, culture, education, health, social services and the environment. Author of seven books on fundraising and boards, and speaker at recent professional gatherings in Italy, Poland, Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Slovakia, Australia and Canada as well as the United States, she has gathered insights and exchanged ideas with a wide array of leaders.

Kay has received Stanford University’s highest award for volunteer leadership service, The Gold Spike, and was recognized with the Pink Carnation Award from Gamma Phi Beta. In 2013 she received the Henry A. Rosso Award for Lifetime Achievement in Ethical Fundraising from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University.

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