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We Can Help!‎

We Can Help!‎

Chapter Leadership Brief 10.8.2021

By Steve Jacobson, AFP-NYC President 
CEO, JCA, Inc.

A new study released just this past week by the Urban Institute revealed that charitable giving in 2020 declined significantly for small nonprofits while larger organizations tended to fare better.  Until now, we’ve seen a number of studies, surveys and anecdotal references that have pointed to the level of giving varying widely based on nonprofit sectors.  In 2020, as in other years, giving was impacted by current events.  The murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and others spurred giving to social justice organizations.  The pandemic prompted increased levels of giving to hospitals and health care foundations.  But, on the flip side, according to Giving USA, 2020 giving was down by 8.6% to arts and culture institutions.  Overall, 2020 could be summed up as the “year of unequal giving.”

But back to the small organizations, which did not fare as well as their larger counterparts.  Why was that?  One theory is that new and infrequent donors are more familiar with large “brand name” organizations and choose this direction as a safe choice for their money.  But another theory, advanced by Laura Pierce, the executive director of Washington (state) Nonprofits, and reported by the Chronicle of Philanthropy, is that small nonprofits often lack the full-time fundraising staff and expertise needed to adapt to changing conditions. I believe that both theories are true.

While the AFP NYC chapter can’t do much to change the mindset of donors and prospects, we can help small organizations become more effective in their fundraising efforts.  If you work for a small nonprofit, with an annual budget of $1 million or less, you may want to consider an AFP Small Nonprofit Organization membership. For only $175 per year, you’ll have access to a wealth of educational resources and opportunities. Additionally, you’ll enjoy the member discount for our chapter’s professional advancement events, beginning with our next event on October 20th:  “Where Do We Go from Here? The Evolving Landscape of Special Events.”  And, you’ll also gain the member discount for our signature in-person, full-day educational conference, Fundraising Day in New York, which will be held on June 17, 2022. 

I hope to see you soon!

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