Philanthropy is considered a forgotten investment asset – it creates value, but it is often difficult to quantify that value.
There are many different types of philanthropy, each presenting a different approach to giving. The following philanthropy resources should provide you with a range of options, whether you are a philanthropist, a company keen to support philanthropy, or a non-profit organisation looking to access philanthropy.
Support for non-profit organisations can be divided into two main categories: financial and non-financial support.
Financial support includes things like bequests, grants, loans and equity capital, where financing is provided by external investors buying shares in a company.
Financial support provided by funders can be either restricted or unrestricted. Restricted support means that funds provided must be used for a specific purpose or project. Unrestricted funds can be used at the NPOs discretion and are often put towards general operating costs like staff salaries and other overheads.
Non-Financial support involves things like the donation of goods and services, pro bono work, volunteering, and bartering –where services or goods are exchanged without money changing hands. Non-financial support can also include things like supporting the NPO's transition into a social enterprise, which helps to ensure the organisation’s long-term sustainability.
There are many benefits to corporates supporting philanthropy. Not only does this support create a positive image around the business, it allows the organisation to ‘give back’ to the community, while also creating an empathetic workplace that boosts the morale of employees. To this end, many organisations put corporate programmes in place that encourage staff involvement in the form of making donations and volunteering for non-profits.
Examples of corporate programmes include: Matching gifts, where the company matches the amount donated by the employee; Volunteer grants, where the corporate makes a financial donation to match every hour that a staff-member volunteers for a non-profit; Payroll deductions, which allow employees to donate a portion of their pre-tax salary, and Corporate Sponsorship where financial support is provided to a specific non-profit.
As a non-profit it can often be daunting to know how to access corporate philanthropy donors, and what deliverables or resources to highlight when pitching for funding once you have found them.
There are a variety of ways to find corporate donors – some good places to start are with things like canvasing your organisation’s contacts, putting out a call on your mailing list or social media, and contacting corporates that are active in your sector or local community.
After several years of hosting annual conference sessions in which non-profit organisations pitch their projects to a panel of corporate donors, Trialogue has rounded up some of the most consistent feedback to begin to answer the question on what corporate donors look for in fundraising pitches. In this competitive funding landscape NPOs must master the art of the ‘elevator pitch’ and find engaging ways to grab – and keep – the attention of potential donors.