Opinion / features

Many of the issues that matter most to fundraisers are far from clear cut. Here, in a series of illustrated feature articles, seasoned practitioners and newcomers alongside leading figures from the world of fundraising are free to give vent to their passionately-held views and opinions. Join the big debates or study the side issues so you can work out your own view on what matters most.

Recession-proof fundraising: How to fundraise out of bad times


by Marc Pitman

​Turn on any news show and you’ll hear analysts and pundits forecasting economic doom and gloom. Their reports are filled with words and phrases like ‘economic downturn’, ‘soft economy’ and the dreaded ‘recession’.

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A day with the jam ladies

Stirring jam

by Kimberley MacKenzie

In our first entry of this new inspiring showcase, Kimberley Mackenzie from Ontario Nature, Canada, shares her holiday memories and how one moving and touching day reminded her of the essential values of good fundraising and how to change the world.

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Words count: Why fundraisers have to change what they say and how they say it

‘Following a set process will no longer produce a predictably positive result.' Bob Levy

by Bob Levy

Over the last decade, the direct marketing industry has been smitten by data base gurus who have touted the segmentation of donor files as a process akin to the magical mystery tour.

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The dangers of requests for proposal

leonard nimoy as spock

by Roger Craver

This week legendary Agitator Roger Craver joins in with his opinion on the ‘request for proposal’. And he’s not pulling any punches about what he believes is ‘...among the Great idiocies of our nonprofit world’. Click here to see more and to find out what he does admire and praise.

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Rethinking the way we think

Dan Pallotta delivers his TED talk.

by Charlie Hulme

A review of Dan Pallotta’s TED talk, The way we think about charity is dead wrong.

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Reasons to be cheerful: the 2013 Charity Pulse survey

by Frances Hurst

Now from Frances Hurst we learn that fundraisers in the UK have reasons to be cheerful. The recent Charity Pulse survey shows that UK fundraisers have resumed their previous position among the happiest of charity employees.

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I wish I’d thought of SOFII

cat and mirror

by Charlie Hulme

Charlie Hulme blows SOFII’s trumpet as he berates fundraisers for, among other things, a shocking lack of vocation. But is he right? We couldn’t possibly comment, of course. The views of the author are, quite obviously, solely his own...

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Less pessimism about the fundraising climate but…

by Andrew Papworth

Andrew Papworth reports on the latest Managing in a Downturn and you’ll be pleased to learn that although things are still tough, there is a less pessimism about the fundraising climate. Even better is that individual giving continues to be an important part of fundraising in the UK (and elsewhere too, no doubt).

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When you wish upon a star

This could have done with a first-person quote.

by Andrew Papworth

You might be surprised to learn that even in this celebrity-obsessed age, UK charities don’t use the famous extensively in their campaigns. If you do have a celebrity you need to use him or her wisely, says Andrew Papworth.

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A true story about perception, taste and priorities

Joshua Bell

by Marie Burnett

This isn’t actually my story, I received it in one of those emails that periodically do the rounds. You might have too. I was amazed when I read it and immediately went straight to Google to find out if it had really happened.

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