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Help Sheet

Fundraising: The Basics

Asking for money is never easy, but it is nonetheless a necessity for most community groups.

Although it's undoubtedly hard, fundraising can - and should - be a fun and exciting experience. It is also an experience that should be shared. For leaders of community organisations one of the challenges is ensuring that everyone in the group has some involvement in raising money.

Why fundraising is important

While everyone seems to acknowledge that getting money into your organisation is important, the role of the fundraiser is often under-valued. It shouldn't be. Without sufficient funding coming in, groups can struggle to get their important message across, provide their services or indeed survive as a group at all.

Fundraising activities can determine the future of your organisation. A strong fundraising effort can ensure there are adequate funds to support all of your activities; a poor performance can drain money and threaten the very survival of your organisation.

Designate a fundraising coordinator

The first step towards establishing a functional fundraising strategy is to actually form a fundraising committee and/or appoint a fundraising officer.

This means the overall responsibility for fundraising activities is in the hands of one person, or a single small group.

Establish a fundraising strategy

Your fundraising strategy needs to be developed annually and checked or tweaked constantly. Flexibility is vital so you can react to new opportunities or curtail activities that are either not practical or not profitable.

First steps:

Remember, if you are asking for money, it is easier to raise money for a specific project or activity than for the organisation as a whole. Most people would rather know exactly where their money is being spent.

Fundraising options

Fundraising options include:

These specific forms of fundraising are discussed in greater detail in other help sheets in this section of the Our Consumer Place website.

Try to use or incorporate multiple fundraising options into a single initiative. If you have a special event, set up a stall to sell your organisation's merchandise, or conduct a raffle, and always make sure programs or invitations have a donation form attached as well as information on how people can join as members.

And check any legal obligations when raising funds. For more information on these, refer to This Section of the Funding Centre.

What next?

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