Crowdfunding and Nonprofits

Involving a nonprofit in a crowdfunding* event is a test of cooperation among the members.

A foundation recently approved a grant request I wrote. It involved a competition among nonprofits through a crowdfunding process. This is a new type of grant process where a nonprofit getting the most donations gets a bonus and a chance to compete at the national level. The other nonprofits get to keep their donations.

Normally after a grant is approved, I gradually reduce my involvement, except for the reporting, and let the nonprofit take over managing the process. I think nonprofit members should take responsibility for the approved grant. After all, it is funding for their mission.

This grant required the nonprofit members to work together with a marketing plan to assure people knew about the crowdfunding and would donate. So far, this has not worked out.

Before the submission, I explained what this grant would involve. Maybe I should have taken more of a lead and assigned roles and goals for each member. But that meant I would take over some of the nonprofit’s functions. I wanted the nonprofit members to do their part, too.

So, I relied on the nonprofit members to advertise the crowdfunding through their network of people and put it on their website. Except, the executive director became absent and there were problems getting volunteers for the board. Other members hesitated to be involved leaving gaps in communicating the crowdfunding to possible donors.

I want this grant to have some success. I am trying to encourage the members to be more involved. I first need to find members who want to be involved and time is running out.

  • Crowdfunding is asking, through social media, for small amounts of money from many people to finance a venture.

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