GivingTake Blog Posts

Philanthropy: The means for sustaining population health programs
  If a population health initiative gets initial funding from a foundation, health insurer, or a hospital, and shows strong results…will it get more funding to maintain its good work? Likely not. Public health leaders are often frustrated by having to shutter outstanding community health programs when the start-up funding from foundations, insurers, hospitals, and […]
Turning Gratitude Into Gifts
   Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts. Henri Frederic Amiel    Those acts can be volunteering for a nonprofit organization, helping a friend or a stranger, or making a financial contribution. Giving is an act born from emotion.  You […]
Fundraisers Want Tools Too
  Call me nuts (upon fear of bodily harm), but as I conduct more and more trainings and consult with more and more advancement shops, the clamor for effective and simple tools is becoming overwhelmingly apparent.  There are plenty of ever emerging social media channels to distract us, but few useful tools to help get […]
It is Time to Revisit Charitable Gift Annuities
  I was skeptical at first.  A colleague introduced me to a strategy that removes all risk to the nonprofit organization (NPO) when writing a charitable gift annuity (CGA), and reduces significantly the risk of default to the donor.  This is especially true for smaller NPOs and younger donors.  Larger NPOs can tolerate more risk […]
New Gift Counting Standard… Self Serving?
By Larry Raff In Insights, Major Gifts, Training Posted October 5, 2015 0 Comments
  My jaw dropped when I read the latest edition of Healthcare Philanthropy, the publication of the Association of Healthcare Philanthropy(AHP). Under the heading of “The Climate of Integration” AHP says its recent gift-reporting standards recommend that charitable institutions show total productivity of fundraising efforts by recognizing revocable bequest commitments and life-income gifts at the […]
Doing the Right Thing…Even if It is Hard
  Every now and then I construct a case study about a situation that applies more broadly to our work in the non-profit sector and has many potential paths to the outcome.  While this particular case is personal, it has application to the advancement field; for example, the dilemma of legacy naming opportunities that may […]
Justifying the Hire of Another Gift Officer
  I get this question often…when is the right time to hire another gift officer? Perhaps a better question is how do I justify hiring another gift officer so I can get the position in the budget? You and your CFO/CEO will need some idea about the return on the investment (ROI) and the time […]
Do They Trust You?
“Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.” Albert Einstein The success of fundraising and advancement depends upon your credibility, and that of your organization and leadership with your donors. Donors have an overwhelming number of choices for use of their philanthropic dollar.  So the slightest reason for them to […]
Campaign Confusion
Campaigns come in many flavors. ·         Capital Campaign ·         Annual Fund Campaign ·         Direct Mail Campaign ·         Employee Campaign ·         Endowment Campaign ·         Comprehensive vs. Targeted Campaign For advancement professionals, these different campaign constructs are generally understood, but not so much for volunteers and donors. I have found over the years that there is also […]
Research Results: Advancement Officer Self Evaluations
By Larry Raff In Major Gifts, Training Posted May 4, 2015 0 Comments
    Before each Master Gift Officer Training (PLAN-MGO) over the past seven years, we ask each attendee to complete an 18 question self-evaluation.  Each group has been distinct, with different strengths and challenges. Students of all sessions were comprised of major gift officers, executive directors, annual and planned giving officers and trustees from more […]
Campaign Essentials – Info-Graphic
  Campaigns come in all shapes, sizes and colors. Some are staff driven, some are volunteer driven and some are more often hybrids.  The following is my attempt at an info-graphic summarizing the essentials for a successful campaign.     Your takes: 1.  When contemplating a campaign, be sure you have most of the essentials […]
Congratulations to Elsa Gomes Bondlow, the 2015 planMGO Fellowship Recipient
By Larry Raff In Major Gifts, Training Posted March 21, 2015 0 Comments
The opportunity to attend planMGO would allow me to be in a fundraising learning environment, exposed to others with more development experience, sharing knowledge and ideas mutually beneficial to everyone’s professional growth. I am eager to continually learn more about working with donors, achieving goals, conducting successful asks, and developing winning stewardship strategies. My journey […]

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