By Sara Lundenberger – Director of nonprofit consulting
Every day, we are all impacted by a nonprofit in our community, whether we know it or not. I pass through Zoar, which is preserved by a nonprofit. I walk my dog, Lucy, who I rescued from a nonprofit. I drive through Akron and see the beautiful landscaping done by Keep Akron Beautiful and I work in the Bounce Innovation Hub, both nonprofits.
Here at Dot Org Solutions, we believe nonprofits are an important piece of our communities because they provide much-needed services that otherwise would not exist. That’s why we are dedicated to helping them succeed in their fundraising and marketing efforts.
Unfortunately, nonprofits are not always celebrated for their impact – but, National Nonprofit Day, celebrated Aug. 17, shines a well-deserved spotlight on them and their services.
National Nonprofit Day gives you the perfect opportunity to give back to the nonprofits that have benefited you and/or your community. Here are some ways to celebrate your favorite nonprofit on this holiday:
1. Plan a fundraiser
Third-party events are a great and easy way for nonprofits to raise additional funds. The general idea is for someone – like you – to plan an event on their own that benefits the nonprofit. Please make sure to let the nonprofit know what you are doing and ask if they have any guidelines that you need to follow. It can be something small, like asking for donations instead of birthday or wedding gifts, or something big, like a 5K run or even a dinner with a raffle. By opening up your circle through a planned fundraiser, you can not only educate your family and friends about something you are passionate about, but you are allowing the nonprofit to add more people to their supporters list and tell their story to a new group of people that can hopefully become new, long-time donors.
Volunteering is the best way to truly see the impact an organization makes in your community. I can promise you that giving a few hours of your time will also have a profound impact on you and the way you interact with your community.
Just a warning – once you volunteer once, you are probably going to want to continue volunteering! Of course, nonprofits are always looking for volunteers who can provide services at any time – however, this is not always realistic for many people. If you can’t commit to a normal volunteer schedule, most places will allow you to come in for just a few hours for small projects. Another idea is to organize and employee volunteer day for your company or business or for a group of your friends. Not only is it a team building or bonding exercise, but your coworkers and friends will appreciate getting the opportunity to give back. As an added bonus, you’ll be exposing them to an organization you are passionate about, which could make them want to become a regular supporter as well.
3. Make a donation
This might seem like the least time-consuming way to give back to your nonprofit, but it can also be the most personal. Making a monetary donation of any size is making a commitment to the organization that you believe in and support. Once you have made a donation for National Nonprofit Day, consider setting up a monthly gift. A smaller donation every month can really add up to a significant number at the end of the year for a nonprofit. Additionally, if you’d like to make a bigger impact, talk with representatives of the nonprofit about what their organization’s needs are and how your philanthropic goals align with their organizational goals.
4. Share their mission
The hardest thing for nonprofits to do sometimes is share their story. From working with our nonprofit clients, we have found that many organizations are so focused on doing the work that they don’t take the time to celebrate their work! Follow your favorite nonprofit on social media and share their posts. Additionally, tell your friends, family and coworkers why you support the nonprofit. You can be the best advocate for a nonprofit because you believe in what they are doing. Everyone has a reason for supporting nonprofits – tell yours!
Nonprofits make a difference in the lives of children with educational needs; patients seeking healthcare services; families experiencing poverty; animals in need of a forever home and many others throughout your community. And you can make a difference for these nonprofits.
Find a local nonprofit you are passionate about and get involved. Volunteer, sit on their board, donate and share their story. I promise you will feel good about yourself and what you were able to help the organization accomplish. Happy National Nonprofit Day!
We are committed to serving nonprofits and working with them on attaining marketing and fundraising goals. Want to learn more? Contact us at [email protected] or 330.247.2180.