Fri, April 24 2015

Nonprofit Spotlight: True Impact Ministries

Annika Pettitt's avatar

Customer Success Manager, Network for Good

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Filed under:   Fun stuff •

Network for Good works with so many amazing nonprofits and we want to introduce you to them and the great work they are doing! As part of our Recurring Giving Challenge we’re highlighting members of our leaderboard who are producing compelling, creative campaigns to recruit recurring donors and build a sustainable fundraising model for their organization. Today I want you to meet True Impact Ministries, a customer using recurring giving to sponsor children and the current holder of 4th place on our leaderboard.

Meet True Impact Ministries

Nonprofit Spotlight: True Impact Ministries

Like so many nonprofit organizations, True Impact Ministries has changed and molded its mission to meet the needs of the communities it serves. Ten years ago, when True Impact’s founders Andy and Susie Stewart first began their work, they brought a small team of volunteers to Uganda to help build a modest school house. It was the beginning of an ever-expanding mission that now includes orphan homes, water structures, and medical care.

True Impact Ministries believes they have the ability to help ordinary people make an extraordinary impact on the lives of people in impoverished areas of the world. Since their humble beginnings in 2004, through the establishment as an independent nonprofit 3 years ago, they’ve proven this to be true. Their groups of volunteers have grown from just a handful to 35 volunteers planning their visit to Uganda this June! And as their mission grows, so too has their circle of supporters.

True Impact Ministries

Sponsorship Model

In 2006 True Impact Ministries completed their second building project, an orphan home and rainwater collection system in Naama, Uganda. With this project they’d solved a problem by providing shelter, and created another by taking on the care of children in need. Building projects alone would not provide the schooling, medical care, food, and clothing these children needed to thrive. It was a problem they embraced by creating their first sponsorship program, a funding strategy that has helped them provide continual support for the children they serve.

Creating a Real Connection

One of the keys to their sponsorship program’s success is in TIM’s ability to create a lasting connection between their donors and volunteers and the children they’re supporting. From individual pictures and descriptions for every child on their sponsorship page, to their use of fun and approachable videos on social media, they work to create a true connection that makes a sponsorship more than just a donation.

The kids at Salem Children Center in 2006 seeing themselves on video for the first time. Recognize some faces, team members and sponsors? These kids are so big now!

Posted by True Impact Ministries on Tuesday, October 21, 2014

For more great videos and pictures head on over to Facebook to like True Impact Ministries and support the work they do!

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Fri, April 17 2015

Nonprofit Spotlight: Firecracker Foundation

Annika Pettitt's avatar

Customer Success Manager, Network for Good

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Network for Good works with so many amazing nonprofits and we want to introduce you to them and the great work they are doing! Because May is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, I want you to meet one of my favorite customers who is doing amazing work helping child sexual abuse survivors heal their whole being.

Meet Firecracker Foundation

Nonprofit Spotlight: Firecracker Foundation

On a day-to-day basis, The Firecracker Foundation works with survivors of childhood sexual trauma through long-term strategies of therapy, arts enrichment, and yoga practice. Their work is focused on healing the whole individual.

On a larger scale, however, The Firecracker Foundation is about community. Tashmica Torok, the founder of Firecracker, has built her organization around the historical idea of community members being charged with keeping the communal fire burning. From their mission to their fundraising strategy, this ethos of the many coming together for a common goal is extremely evident.

Their Model

The Firecracker Foundation challenges their supporters to build a blaze, to be a part of the network that keeps and builds the lively sparks in child survivors. From the adult survivors who serve as mentors to the therapists and yoga instructors who offer their time and expertise, Firecracker truly has built a community of healing around the children survivors they serve. That community isn’t just by happenstance; they’ve consciously made recurring giving the heart of their fundraising strategy as a way to ensure the continued success of their communal work.

Stellar Social Media

Firecracker Foundation takes their emphasis of community involvement and engagement beyond the clients they serve and the advocates they train. They also take that energy to social media. Check out these posts from their social channels:

All that's left on the to do list for 2014. You're $7,000 shy of raising $50,000 and 8 away from 40 firekeepers. A beautiful symbol of a #community invested in the holistic healing of child #survivors of #sexualtrauma #sparkhealing

A photo posted by The Firecracker Foundation (@thefirecrackerfoundation) on

During their year-end campaign Firecracker Foundation’s Instagram feed kept supporters updated on how close they were to hitting their goal.

Meet your very first group of Firecracker Advocates! #trailblazers #volunteermichigan #sparkhealing

A photo posted by The Firecracker Foundation (@thefirecrackerfoundation) on

Social media gives organizations the unique opportunity of giving supporters an inside peek into all the work you do. In addition to their work with sexual abuse survivors, Firecracker Foundation also trains advocates.

We hope to see as many of you there as possible! Help support child abuse prevention, April 23rd! #CAPMonth

Posted by The Firecracker Foundation on Friday, April 17, 2015

Using Facebook to rally attendance at events is a great way to meet supporters where they already are: Facebook.

Due to the sensitive nature of their work, it might not be safe to display the photos of those they serve. However, they embrace that challenge and still share images that show the impact of donors’ gifts, without showing clients’ faces.

Remember those self-care items you donated last month. Well, they were put to some serious use in between yoga classes...

Posted by The Firecracker Foundation on Sunday, April 12, 2015

Don’t worry about constantly generating original content, share content that will resonate with your supporters and promote your mission.

We are honored to serve the Firecracker Foundation as their online donation software provider! You guys are amazing!

As one of our “Spotlight” nonprofits, we encourage you to take a look at the great work they’re doing and spread the love by following them on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

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Fri, April 17 2015

Nonprofit Link Round Up

Liz Ragland's avatar

Senior Content and Marketing Associate, Network for Good

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Filed under:   Fun stuff •

I hope you celebrated National Volunteer Week. Did you do something to make your volunteers feel special? I got a sweet card and gift in the mail from an organization I've been volunteering with for many years now. It really did make me feel appreciated. Even if you just send out a personal email to those who volunteer with your organization, I promise your volunteers will never forget it!

Now, let's get to those links!

Link Round Up

Speaking of National Volunteer Week, how much do you think your volunteers are valued per hour? via The Nonprofit Times

Jeff Brooks had a great list of five things you might be doing to weaken your fundraising. Be especially aware of number two.

How often do you send donors handwritten thank you notes? I bet your donors want more of them. via The Donor Relations Guru

How much money do you think you could raise right now if you had the time and resources to go after it? Gail Perry asked a fundraiser this question and got a really shocking response. If you feel like you are trapped in a never ending list of administrative tasks and really need to be talking with major donors, this is a must read for you!

Kivi Leroux Miller has a list of the top 50 Nonprofits you should follow on Instagram. via nonnprofitmarketingguide.com (P.S. Do you love Instagram? We love sharing behind-the-scenes snapshots of life at Network for Good on our Instagram account.)

Have you ever thought: should we be making fundraising more fun for our donors? Joe Garecht from The Fundraising Authority has some ideas on how you can spice up your donor communications.

Finally, don’t miss out on our Nonprofit911 webinar with The Art of Social Media author, Guy Kawasaki. Guy will share social media best practices to help grow your nonprofit’s online presence.

That’s all for this week! Have a great weekend and share your best resources in the comments below!

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Wed, April 15 2015

Make the Most of Mother’s Day

Nancy Schwartz's avatar

Nonprofit Marketing Expert

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Filed under:   Fun stuff • Marketing essentials •

There’s no better way for your organization to get the attention of your supporters and prospects (and the media) than by piggybacking on what’s already top of mind. Your people are already thinking about this stuff, making them far more likely to connect with your campaign than at other times.

That’s “right thing, right now” marketing, and I’ve seen some fantastic Mother’s Day models from nonprofits like yours in recent years.

Because I’m a nonprofit communications nerd, I save great email models like these. Just look at these pre–Mother’s Day email subject lines from last year:

Mother's Day Subject Lines

Next, take a look at my two favorite Mother’s Day campaigns from years past:

Lettuce Celebrate

Lettuce Celebrate,” proclaimed Oxfam America in its joyful 2014 campaign inviting us to fund a vegetable garden in honor of our moms. It’s a wonderful—and affordable—concept clearly tied to the organization’s mission and impact. Oxfam America even extended the opportunity beyond the target date in case any Mother’s Day slackers missed it.

I was also struck by this 2008 Mother’s Day fundraising campaign from City Meals. The woman in the photo could have been my grandmother.

City Meals Campaign

City Meals educated readers that “70% of our meal recipients are women. Many no longer have spouses, siblings, friends, or children in their lives. That can make for a lonely Mother’s Day. Send meals in your mother’s honor or memory to elderly New Yorkers who would otherwise be hungry and alone. Mom taught you to care for others. Show her how much you learned.”

Beautifully done, City Meals. This campaign primes our empathy and guilt and motivates our desire to please with the encouragement to be “our best,” as Mom taught us. Hokey, but it works.

What makes this campaign truly effective are the supplementary components that make giving a participatory experience—including e-cards to send your mom (you “purchase” the card—that’s your donation) and the campaign mini-site.

Now’s the time! These are just a couple of the many inspirations out there to power up your organization’s Mother’s Day campaign. Search for more, brainstorm, and produce your Mother’s Day campaign.

How have you piggybacked on Mother’s Day or another holiday to more strongly connect with supporters and prospects? Please share your campaign details in the comments section!

P.S. Father’s Day is around the corner. Start planning now!


With refreshing practicality, Nancy Schwartz rolls up her sleeves to help nonprofits develop and implement strategies to build strong relationships that inspire key supporters to action. She shares her deep nonprofit marketing insights—and passion—through consulting, speaking, and her popular blog and e-news at GettingAttention.org.

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Fri, April 10 2015

Nonprofit Link Round Up

Liz Ragland's avatar

Senior Content and Marketing Associate, Network for Good

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Filed under:   Fun stuff •

Happy Friday!

Link Round Up

Here’s what caught our eye in the world of fundraising and nonprofit marketing this week:

National Volunteer Week is coming up! Wild Apricot has ideas for how you can celebrate and resources to help improve your volunteer programs.

We love John Haydon and all his wise words on social media for nonprofits. Here’s another gem from him: 7 Deceptively Simple Ways to Promote a Fundraiser on Facebook.

Joe Garecht from the Fundraising Authority wants you to step out of your comfort zone and ask your donors the most important question you probably aren’t asking.

During the Association for Fundraising Professionals’ international conference last week, the Chronicle of Philanthropy asked fundraising pros to share what they wish they had known when they started a career in fundraising. The video is definitely worth three minutes of your time!

Kivi and Kristina over at NonprofitMarketingGuide.com have some great tips for you when it comes to leveraging hashtags to promote your cause.

If you’re in the DC area, grab your 3D glasses (they have extras if you’ve misplaced yours) and head over to the M+R event showcasing what they learned from their annual Benchmarks Study. And if you can’t make it to DC, you can still get the highlights from a webinar they’re hosting in May.

I’m a fan of Maeve Strathy’s blog, What Gives Philanthropy? It’s always clever and on point. You must check out a recent post from guest blogger Kimberly Elworthy: 11 Things I Learned About Fundraising/Philanthropy When I Fell into the Field Temporarily. It’s rich with GIFs and will make you chuckle.

That’s all for this week! Have a great weekend and share your best resources in the comments below!

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