What’s next for fundraising after coronavirus?

Two valued SOFII partners, The Chartered Institute of Fundraising (CIoF) and THINK Consulting Solutions, bring you an essential report into the state of fundraising – nearly two years into a global pandemic.

Written by
September 16, 2021

As you may know, we have spent nearly two years exploring how fundraisers and charitable organisations have responded to an unprecedented coronavirus pandemic. We’ve celebrated great campaigns that reacted boldly to the new normal; we’ve given voice to experts and people working on the ground to share their stories of fundraising in a pandemic; and we’ve looked at where the sector needs to change to respond to this uncertain future.

So we are delighted to bring you a useful new report by two valued SOFII partners – the Chartered Institute of Fundraising (CIoF) and THINK Consulting Solutions called What next? Fundraising and strategy after COVID. 

We think it is essential reading if you want to know how to proceed after the cataclysm of the pandemic’s initial stages start to recede. Whether it’s issues of planning, strategy, diversity or working conditions, this report covers a lot of ground and should be on the desktop of every fundraising director. You can read or download a handy PDF copy here.

Dhivya O’Connor, interim CEO of the CIoF, says:

‘Fundraisers have shown us once again just how resilient, adaptable, and innovative they are. The sector has embraced digital technologies to engage new audiences with exciting, pioneering products, whilst keeping loyal donors close through improved supporter experience. Every fundraiser has played their part in this: the individual giving teams who have expanded into new channels, the event and community teams who have quickly upskilled themselves to launch their first online event, and the philanthropy teams who stepped up to develop new impact-driven partnerships, to name just three areas. 
Now that in-person activities have restarted, the sector is adapting once again to bring donors together, whilst also keeping them safe. Over the past few months, it has been uplifting to hear that the public are pleased to see fundraisers back in action and recognise the vital role we play in supporting those most affected by Covid-19. None of this has been easy, but our learnings will shape and strengthen the sector. Although the future is still unclear, what is certain is that we have the tools and determination to succeed. Our next step must be towards a more inclusive sector that empowers donors to not simply give, but to use giving to generate greater social impact.

And this sentiment is also echoed by Michelle Chambers, managing director of THINK:

‘The last 18 months have been intense and challenging; but in many ways an exciting and dynamic period for the fundraising sector. The imperative of the early months of the pandemic saw many fundraising teams working at speed to implement new ways of working and introduce innovative ways of connecting and fundraising with supporters. The THINK team has been inspired by the sheer determination and dedication shown by fundraisers across the sector and we applaud the work undertaken to ensure funds raised are maximised so that programme delivery can continue. 
However, the continued uncertainty of the pandemic has resulted in a prevalence of short-term thinking and a stalling of longer-term strategic plans. Now is the time to move beyond today and tomorrow and look ahead once more to what the next three to five years will look like for the fundraising in your charity. Whilst there are still many unknowns, focus needs to turn to the strategy and investment required over the long term to adopt new ways of working; and address those issues beyond the pandemic which are critical to success. 
We hope you will find our reflections and ideas a stimulus to your thinking and action as you look ahead to 2022 and beyond.’

We want to thank both the CIoF and THINK for their hard work in compiling this report and for letting us share it with all SOFII readers worldwide.

About the author: SOFII

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