About 35 representatives of NPOs and universities, from Cape Town and Johannesburg, attended a digital fundraising workshop at Inyathelo’s Civil Society Sustainability Centre on 12 February.
Ruendree Govinder, social media consultant, who led the workshop, explained: “We found that many people still have a lot to learn about digital fundraising, and often feel overwhelmed at how much there is to do. There is also the misconception that organisations can secure millions of rands.”
To establish the context, Ruvimbo Gwatirisa, Inyathelo Programme Officer, first ensured that the delegates had a clear understanding of Advancement ‒ the holistic approach to building, maintaining and improving support, skills and funds for an organisation for long-term sustainability.
Advancement highlights the importance of relationship–building, and voice and visibility are key to this, said Ruen. “Digital fundraising offers engaging ways to work towards mutual commitment while amplifying an organisation’s voice, and advancing its objectives.
“A donate button on a website is not a fundraising campaign. A digital fundraising plan is a small part of a much larger strategy. Digital fundraising is an ongoing process with ongoing learning, where you continue to adjust your plans based on lessons learnt.”
The delegates were very enthusiastic about the course, whether they were at the early stages of digital fundraising, or more established. Dwyn Griesel, Director and Founder at Kronendal Music Academy, commented: “I found it reassuring to see what we are doing right and it's informed our search for the correct staff for this role.”
Discussing the lessons they will implement in their organisations, Toto Konco, Resource Mobilisation Officer at Mfesane Christianity in Action, said he would be planning and implementing a campaign: “I have never done one in the past, and am more ready, I feel, to do it now.”
Tumi Nkosi, Programme Manager: Business Development at The National Business Initiative, said priorities would be crowdfunding, new ways to thank donors, and measuring campaigns.
The delegates took home a comprehensive workbook on digital fundraising, written by Ruendree in collaboration with Inyathelo.
“This is the first time I've received a workbook at an NGO workshop and I'm looking forward to working through it with my team. Thanks for giving us a tool!” said Karen Vickers, a Director at Nsasani Trust.
The Digital Fundraising Workbook explains the subject in easily accessible steps, and would be extremely helpful whether or not you have attended a workshop. It will shortly be available from the Inyathelo online bookshop at a price to be determined (http://inyathelo.org.za/knowledge-services/inyathelo-publications/online-bookstore.html).