Who would I turn to should I have to raise funds for a needy cause ? I would
have to take into consideration several relevant factors: the objectives of the
fund raising, the target amount to b raised, the initiators or the organizers,
the nature of the fundraising project and the beneficiary or beneficiaries among
Before deciding on whose shoulders the task should fall on, it is
fundamentally sensible to consider both aspects.
In the first instance, if the organizers undertake the fundraising on its own
with volunteers, then all the monies collected minus permitted expenses go
directly into the coffers of the organization.
However, if professional fundraisers are the "workers", then they need to be
paid. Some organizations have rules concerning the minimum and maximum allotment
going to professionals and in essence there should be no hanky panky in such
projects. Unfortunately, some professional fundraisers are rather unprofessional
in their dealings with genuine charitable fundraising.
In the second instance, volunteers are truly enthusiastic and go all out to
raise funds. There is a natural passion for the worthy cause. The handicap is
that most of them may be greenhorns at this game or unschooled in the art of
fundraising. Such a situation can be demoralizing.
However, the professionals are just doing a job and that is as far as it
goes. They have an added advantage in that they are trained personnel at
fundraising and have more than a dozen tricks up their sleeve, quite unlike the
motley crew of volunteers.
In the third instance, members of the organization could use their
connections to solicit funds in a legal way and could request for periodical
contributions or donations (monthly or annually) from giant corporations. Such
corporations are known for their company policy of returning in kind or cash to
Mother Earth and the community. At the same time, genuine fundraisers have to be
aware of bogus fundraisers who get on the
bandwagon and fleece generous donors.
On the other hand, some mega companies already have their pet projects and
are no longer interested or have no other allocations in sponsoring any new
charities. It is like talking to a stone wall. In addition, there is the danger
of volunteers and professionals overlapping in collecting funds, all for the
same purpose and for the same company.
Having looked at both sides of the coin, I am more in favor of volunteer
fundraisers. My primary reason is all the funds collected would become the
"property" of the organization. The objective of the project is to raise as much
money as possible and if a percentage goes as fees to the professional, then the
quantum coming to the fund is reduced. My second reason is when volunteer
fundraisers continue to raise funds, they would gain experience and even be
better than the professionals one day.
So welcome to the world of fundraising, volunteer fundraisers.