Ken Goldstein, MPPA

Ken Goldstein has been working in nonprofits and local government agencies from Santa Cruz, to Sacramento, and back to Silicon Valley, since 1989. He's been staff, volunteer, board member, executive director, and, since 2003, a consultant to local nonprofit organizations. For more on Ken's background, click here. If you are interested in retaining Ken's services, you may contact him at ken at

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Good news for fundraisers

Did I say "good news"? In this economy? Yes, I certainly did. This last January Cygnus Applied Research polled 17,365 people with a history of charitable donations to ask them about their philanthropic plans for 2009. The results (as reported in The Chronicle of Philanthropy) may surprise you:
  • 52% of donors said their gifts would be on par with 2008
  • Only 17.5% planned to give less than last year
  • Of those who were committed to a multi-year gift, 87% said they would pay on time
  • 42.5% said they would give to a charity they had not supported in the past if someone they knew was seeking the gift
  • 40.3% said they would give for the first time if the charity was working directly to help people hurt by the recession
  • Only 16% said they would not consider supporting a new organization
Survey respondents were not being unrealistic about the economy when answering these questions: 39% said they thought it would be at least three years before the economy recovered. 23.4% felt the economy would rebound in less than two years.

A final bit of caution before thinking this news is an open invitation to all sorts of fundraising plans:
Forty-one percent said they had stopped donating to at least one nonprofit group in the past five years because they felt overwhelmed by appeal letters, while more than a third said they were concerned organizations spent too much on fund raising.
As a result, online donations are expected to become more popular, while telemarketing, door-to-door canvassing, and direct-mail appeals may be less successful.

1 comment:

  1. How delightful to hear good news! There's certainly mixed things about the response to the economic crisis, and I always want to cheer for anything that's positive and hopeful. I work for UniversalGiving, a web-based non-profit, and we find too that people do still want to give. The change may be in where and how they want to give, with extra emphasis on quality projects and making the greatest impact possible from a donation.

    Thanks for the positive thoughts, and if you're curious about Universalgiving you can check us out at