Economic Stimulus for Non-Profits and Charities
With last night's passage of the country's newest, and probably not last, Economic Stimulus Bill, we can certainly expect a good deal of benefits fallout into the Northern Virginia regional economy, including Loudoun County. However, while money will be funneled into government-run programs, Federal, State and Local, this doesn't necessarily translate into money for new or existing non-profit charitable organizations, who have been pummeled lately by the "perfect storm" of dramatically-reduced giving and smaller donations, quickly rising need and consumption of services, and growing expenses related to attracting and retaining large donors. Plus, local charitable organizations, from PTAs/PTOs to churches to Food Banks are increasingly short of able-bodied volunteers who are needed to work harder than ever to manage the programs that bring in revenue, at very low margins.
However, there are a few very interesting factors together developing into a different kind of "perfect storm" for charitable giving and fundraising. These include the newly-empowered individual philanthropist, emboldened by opportunities and evidence that "making a change" is a real thing, and can be done with just a few dollars and an Internet connection. Today's WAPO article about Radio fundraising includes a statement by WAMU's director of development, that "$50 as a suggested minimum (contribution)...is out the window...It's going to be "every dollar makes a difference, and any dollar is welcome". Also, the rise of online social media tools and use provide many opportunities for charitable fundraising and giving, without the drag and overhead of bake sales, wrapping paper sales, entertainment events, etc.
A new breed of non-profit has emerged, and is actively beginning to dramatically leverage these factors...though it's not so obvious. A recent news item in Loudoun highlighted the Round Hill-based "paws4People (TM)" foundation, that's been working in many venues training and providing service dogs for all kinds of purposes, from helping school kids to read, to helping comfort and soothe those in need. This local organization is building its fundraising prowess leveraging the power of online social media and Internet marketing, promoting its online charitable raffle fundraising services.
In short, charityraffles.org enables, with the core focus being continued support of the paws4People(TM) foundation interests, any other non-profit to act as a referral agent for these online charity raffles, with absolutely no out-of pocket expense for themselves or associated corporate sponsors. All perfectly legal, a non-profit can quickly and continually raise funds as they're donated (monthly payments), by promoting raffle ticket sales under their own campaign. Each raffle ticket sold not only provides the donor many chances to actually win prizes, including a "grand prize" of up to $1 million, but also provides the "host" raffle organizer recurring funds that (1) are of much higher margin than most any other kind of fundraising tact, (2) support not only the host raffle organizer but all other non-profits in the "consortium", and (3) support the paws4People(TM) organization in a way that touches entire communities.
We'll be providing lots more stories and information about this revolutionary charitable fundraising movement and mechanism, along with the fantastic stories and adventures of the paws4People(TM) service dogs, both here in Loudoun County and elsewhere across the country.
For more information as a Non-Profit seeking fundraising options through Charity Raffles, contact the consortium here.
To simply buy a raffle ticket, promote a cause, and enter a contest with many chances to win great prizes, click here for charity raffle ticket purchases.
Click here to read more about paws4People and the adventures of the service dogs, their trainers (including local prisoners!) and "clients".