SOFII and ASSIF help you dis­cov­er the best of Ital­ian fundraising

For those who kept an eye on our Cri­sis Fundrais­ing sec­tion, you’ll know there’s been a lot of superb fundrais­ing in Italy over the course of the pan­dem­ic. Now, with help of the Ital­ian Asso­ci­a­tion of Fundrais­ers (ASSIF), you can be inspired by new exam­ples of great Ital­ian fundrais­ing. And that’s not all, ASSIF will also be help­ing to trans­late more of SOFII’s exist­ing con­tent into Ital­ian. This is a win-win for fundrais­ers in Italy and around the globe. Watch this space!

Written by
Simona Biancu
October 14, 2021

Introduction by SOFII:

We are thrilled to be teaming up with the Italian Association of Fundraisers for this special series on the best of Italian fundraising. At SOFII, we are fully aware that fundraising strategies, targets, and cultures vary hugely from country to country, and we want to give the leading voices in different markets a chance to explore and explain the particularities of their local non-profit sectors. Where better to start than Italy?

This series will include case studies, opinion pieces and articles that delve into what makes Italian donors tick. It will include how the fundraisers who serve them respond to donor wants and needs. 

But there’s more! We are also thrilled that ASSIF will be translating more of SOFII’s existing content into Italian for our many readers living and working there. 

Now, we would like to hand over to Simona, who can tell you more and introduce the team who will be working with SOFII to share this exciting new project with you.

From Simona Biancu, ASSIF vice-president with responsibility for Europe and internationalisation:

Welcome to a new SOFII collaboration dedicated to fundraising experiences in Italy! 

This series has been developed as a project of for ASSIF, the national professional association for fundraisers in Italy.

At ASSIF, we strongly believe in the circulation of content, information, and whatever may be useful to advance our profession.

We are also aware that cultural backgrounds may impact the way we fundraise and, for this reason, disseminating ideas and initiatives from non-profits can be a powerful way improve the whole sector. 

SOFII is the perfect place to match and link fundraisers from across the globe, let them read and share their perspectives on campaigns and initiatives. At ASSIF we also encourage our community of professional fundraisers to take an active part in the association through forms of professional volunteerism, and this project is one example of this.

The project has seen great interest among members of the ASSIF community and is run by about 15 volunteer fundraisers across Italy. It is led by myself, the ASSIF vice-president.

Together with SOFII we will bring you case histories, best practice and fundraising experiences that pertain to Italian-based non-profit organisations. 

Our group of contributors is also working to use our fundraising and language skills to translate existing articles and case studies from SOFII into Italian, allowing us all to enhance the circulation of information across borders. 

We hope you will find useful tools and ideas to help you improve your fundraising. Stay tuned for the first few pieces of content from our ASSIF and SOFII collaboration.

In fact, if you are an Italian speaker, why not get started now? Just click here to read Claire Axelrad’s blog on major fundraising,  translated by Augusto Garavelli and revised by Sabrina Torresani. Ciao!

Meet the ASSIF team who will be contributing to this series:

Mattea Traversi

Mattea’s ambition is to sustain the culture of charitable giving. Following her university degree in international cooperation, she completed a master’s degree in fundraising for public entities and non-profit organisations. She was fundraising event coordinator for Amka Onlus, aimed at promoting sustainable development in Guatemala and the Congo. She is currently fundraising manager, heading the start-up fundraising process, at the Massimo Institute of Rome.

Michela Rotondale

Michela has 25 years of experience in the cultural production sector as an operator specialised in cultural planning, cultural diplomacy and fundraising for cultural organisations. Michela has worked on several international projects and diplomatic contexts. She is a member of the Italian Association of Fundraisers, ASSIF.

Patrizia Di Giannantonio

A senior professional with 24 years of experience in the corporate sector and five-and-a-half years in the non-profit sector, Patrizia is a fan of social justice, ethics, and fair distribution of richness. She is interested in environment-related issues as well as in social themes. She works on fundraising strategies, planning, tools and techniques, and specialises in third sector reform and fundraising 2.0. Patrizia has qualifications in project management and fundraising coordination. 

Vania Pavan

Vania is a marketing and fundraising consultant. She has been an international relations officer for several governmental departments and the communication manager for Pubblicità Progresso, the leading social communication agency in Italy. She created the first online international library on PSA, linking all countries in a global network. In addition, she designs and coordinates web and multichannel projects. Thanks to her experience in the private sector, she can offer marketing and fundraising consultancy grounded in commercial acumen, proposing projects between for-profits and not-for-profits. She has worked with more than 50 not-for-profit organisations, including big international NGOs such as Greenpeace and Amref, while also directly coordinating small schools in Africa. Vania is coordinator of the editors and content writers of the Italian Fundraisers.

Caterina Ferrari

Caterina has several years of experience in marketing and communication for private sector organisations, both as an employee and independent consultant – mostly in Paris and Sydney. Recently she decided to take her knowledge and expertise and apply them to causes that more reflect her ethics and values, ‘one of the best decisions I could have ever taken in my life’, she says. Caterina now provides strategic consultancy and hands-on support to deliver improved results and donor satisfaction to small and medium charities. She is positive and empathetic person, very passionate about donor motivations and prospect research. Caterina has been an Australian Institute of Fundraising fellow in the past and she is now an ASSIF member. Caterina lives on the Como Lake with her husband and three young children.

Sabrina Torresani

‘I believe the interaction between people, creativity and sharing information are best practices to create value’.

Working at the nexus of the third sector Sabrina became passionate about fundraising themes. After a master’s degree in economic studies, she completed a master’s course in fundraising, communication and management of non-profit organisations. She works as a fundraiser for a charity related to the Franciscan friars of Rome.

Augusto Garavelli

Augusto graduated in classics in 2014 and with a master’s degree in not-for-profit organisation management and started working for the Fondazione Umberto Veronesi in 2015, at first at the corporate fundraising office. After one year, he joined the communications team, where he worked until January 2020, before moving to the private donors fundraising office. He is involved in many fundraising activities, especially offline, fundraising campaigns and data entry and analysis.

Julia Hoffman

Julia is a sustainability and ESG advisor, dealing with fundraising and finance, impact assessment and sustainability reporting. She has a strong desire to bring the impact investment model to the Italian territory to better contribute to the management and implementation of the 17 sustainable development goals as outlined in the UN’s 2030 Agenda. This is with a view to hybridizing the third sector, public administration, and the market. These goals include care, research and access to health services, psychological support for the most vulnerable groups, work integration and reintegration programmes for the unemployed, immigrants and NEETs (people not in education, employment or training), climate change, responsible behaviour within communities, innovation, and anti-racist perspectives.

Veronica Parise

Veronica Parise is an anthropologist specialised in international cooperation, sustainable development, marketing & comms and environmental mainstreaming.

Passionate about Arts, she took part in an acting and writing workshop with Dario Fo.

After working in the worlds of tourism, golf, fair trade, and in the wine industry at managerial and consultant level (also volunteering in environmental and human rights NGOs) she collaborated with several organisations as a fundraising specialist such as with UNICEF Italy. During her career she has spoken to thousands of donors. Very fond of writing, Donne fondatrici dell’antropologia sociale (Women founders of social anthropology - soon available in English) is her first essay.

Her new novel Once Were Scuba Divers is currently being printed.

About the author: Simona Biancu

Simona is a fundraising and strategic philanthropy consultant and trainer, as well as the founder and CEO of ENGAGEDin – an international consultancy. With more than 10 years of experience across the fundraising mix, Simona works with non-profit organisations both in Italy, where she currently lives, and abroad. She speaks at conferences, seminars and training at an international level. Simona is Vice-president of the Italian Association of fundraisers (ASSIF) and a member of both the European Fundraising Association (EFA) and European Lung Foundation. She is the co-author of the book Board in prima fila (2020), focussed on Board development, and the blog Welcome on Board, focussed on experiences in consulting with non-profits governance and development.

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