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Recently Independent Sector published an article titled “2018 Giving is Dropping. Now What?” that cited analysis from The Fundraising Effectiveness Project. In the article they note that their research shows a 2% decline in the amount given to charities and close to a 7% drop in the number of donors. This analysis was derived from analyzing the second quarter fundraising returns for over 13,000 organizations.
The same report also noted a 6% decline in donor retention year to date. New donors are down 9% and new retained donors are down 18%. Recaptured donors are down 5% and repeat retained donors are down 2.1%.
The report itself is derived from software providers such as Blackbaud, Donor Perfect, and Bloomerang. The data reporting is a sampling from organizations that have raised $5,000 or more, with 25 or more donors in each of the last 6 years.
What this tells me is that we are only looking at one part of the picture. When you only look at the numbers you aren’t asking organizations critical questions such as:
When I see the results that show such declines not only in new donors but also in donor retention I have to ask that question. At the end of 2017, and early in 2018, the message was sent far and wide that the tax incentive to give was no longer available to most donors and therefore giving would decline.
How many of us reduced efforts and or staff that support donor engagement? How many of us instead of doubling down on our efforts, pulled back? How many of us directly or indirectly told our donors that their gifts were no longer tax deductible?
The bottom line is whether or not we did things any differently in 2018 assuming the worst, instead of hoping for the best. I can’t answer these questions, and again I can only draw my own conclusions that may be fair or unfair. I’ll admit to that.
What I see here in Idaho is the opposite. I see every fundraising event that I’ve been to this year doing better than ever before. Our own annual Idaho Gives raised a record $1.55 million for Idaho’s nonprofit community.
Join us in celebrating nonprofits this November for Nonprofit Awareness Month! We are excited to share your collective achievements throughout the month and we want to celebrate our members!
The INC’s social media accounts will be taken over by 15 different INC nonprofit members throughout the month. Each region of the state will be represented and will show the variety of nonprofits in the state.
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