If you are a fundraiser and you have not done so I highly recommend reading Gender Matters: A Guide to Growing Women’s Philanthropy by Kathleen Loehr.
Kathleen was previously with the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at IU and is now with Aspen Leadership Group – she is by far one of the world’s greatest experts on women and giving. Kathleen has written a thought-provoking piece focused on women and philanthropy. Here are a few key takeaways:
- Women hold an increasing amount of wealth.
- All donors are not the same, what works for men will not necessarily (probably will not) work with women.
- Stand-alone programs that focus on women as philanthropists which are not integrated into a larger vision and framework or strategy are likely to fail.
This topic matters because many if not a majority of the donors to your nonprofit are most likely women. (Don’t believe me? Run a list of your top 100 donors or 250 donors). Even if your donor base is equally balanced these questions remain:
- Are you engaging women in ways that are meaningful to them?
- Are you involving women in ways that will inspire them to help further your mission?
While the above may focus on women one could ask similar questions about donors from a diverse array of backgrounds. You can learn more about diversity from:
- Angelique Grant, Ph.D. (Senior Consultant and Certified Diversity Recruiter at Aspen Leadership Group),
- Armando Zumaya who also offers thought-providing perspectives about diversity, and the
- Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP-IDEA — Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Access).
You are also welcome to contact me about a presentation that I offer about diversity and fundraising.
Are you engaging women in meaningful ways that have increased their philanthropic giving to your educational institution or nonprofit? If so, what has proven successful? I look forward to hearing from you because we can all learn from one another.