Institute for Charitable Giving

blue rule

Enlightened Givers Feel the Rapture of Being Alive

blue rule

At a time when it’s easy to chase upstream after donors and dollars, I challenge all moving in that direction to pause and invest in your relationship with your most “Enlightened Givers”.

A good test of that relationship would be how often they are connecting with you.

In Chapter 6 of Asking by my mentor Jerold Panas he explains:

  • They find it wonderful to give money to help those in need.
  • They love to give and are pleased to know their money is going to help change lives.
  • They’re willing to listen and never refuse to be solicited.
  • They don’t put it off and will see you as quickly as possible.
  • They realize that early gifts are most important.
  • At times, they give more than they were asked for and understand how their gift will inspire others to higher levels.
  • They will make the gift and decide to become personally involved.

During tough times, it’s often easy to put together a solicitation mass mailing or highend video production for social media extolling your needs. But for the friends of your cause, a simple phone check-in call to see how they’re doing without an ask could be the most important impact you could make on their life. You might find their conditions have changed.  They might have personal or professional needs that you can help respond to because you are a friend. 

Appreciation makes most people feel better than almost anything you can give them.  When you serve downstream and genuinely care for your “Enlightened Givers” you will be amazed how the financial perspective will flow to you.

Michael Brunker
Vice President for Mission Advancement
YMCA of San Diego County


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