Two weeks ago, an old friend of mine returned from a trip to Africa where she served as part of a medical team, providing much needed attention and care to many families; children in particular. I showed my seven-year-old son the series of quite arresting photos she had taken and he was moved by the plight of these children and asked if we could help them, too. Going online, we gave a donation right then and there to an organization that provides similar international medical services and is based locally. It was a great moment; he was proud he was able to help kids across the world and I was proud of him.
Yesterday, I pulled my mail out of the box and found a solicitation from this organization. Really? I just gave to you two weeks ago and you’re asking again already? If I give again today, will you ask again in two weeks? I was annoyed and the letter went straight into the recycling.
Last night, as I was preparing dinner, I got a call from the advocacy arm (PAC) of a nonprofit I support. I listened to the caller’s spiel patiently while I chopped carrots and radishes even though I had already decided that I would not be supporting the PAC because I was focusing my gift on the nonprofit and couldn’t do both right now. When she finished, I explained why I wouldn’t be giving to the PAC and steeled myself for the inevitable, “But THIS effort is really important, too, and you should support both.” But you know what she said? She said thank you. She said, “Oh, you are? Thank for supporting our organization. We really appreciate your support. You have a nice night now.” I was taken aback. She didn’t push and ask for an additional gift? Yahoo! Thank you, organization, I appreciate you listening to me. Next time, I will consider increasing my gift.
AFP came out with a great story on this topic today. Read it here.
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About the Author
Dana Van Nest
Dana is Collins’ go-to person for connecting with potential clients, overseeing all our communications strategies, and maintaining strong relationships with professional associations and industry colleagues.