impact stories blog

#WordsOfWisdomWednesday: We are the ones we’ve been waiting for

“A lot of people are waiting for Martin Luther King or Mahatma Gandhi to come back— but they are gone. We are it. It is up to us. It is up to you”

-Marian Wright Edelman, Founder, Children’s Defense Fund

 

Photo by Mark Harrington is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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What Do We Say Now? 5 Tips for Nonprofit Messaging in the Trump Era

At Impact, we talk to a lot of nonprofit folks about messaging. And for many of our clients, things have been a little challenging since last November. Sure, there are the nonprofits like ACLU (who we’re proud to partner with), Greenpeace, and Planned Parenthood whose messaging has been crystal clear and can be summed up in one word: RESIST.

But the vast majority of nonprofits we work with are nonpartisan. While many have donor bases that are quite liberal, the organization itself cannot get overtly political. (more…)

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When Times Are Tough, Tell It Like It Is

Sometimes, it pays to be transparent with your donors.

The American Psychological Association Practice Organization, an Impact client, has had fewer members in the past years, creating a smaller landscape for fundraising. We helped them craft an appeal letter that did not mask the challenges and stressed that donor support was more important than ever. The appeal generated more revenue than the prior year, despite mailing to 35% fewer households.

Why was this so effective?

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#WordsOfWisdomWednesday: Stories Matter

“Stories matter. Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign, but stories can also be used to empower and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people, but stories can also repair that broken dignity.”

-Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Welcome to Impact’s inaugural #WordsOfWisdomWednesday. Check back every week for more inspiring words relevant to our work as fundraisers, storytellers, and world changers.

Photo credit: © Brittany Stevens. Used under a Creative Commons (CC-BY-2.0) license.

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Top 10 Reasons Why You Need a Case for Giving

  1. type?shutterstock_84644803Because your gift officers struggle to articulate what your organization could do with large gifts.
  1. Because your program staff is too busy to write down what they are doing – and it’s not their job anyway.
  1. Because the communications team has great writers on staff – but they are NOT fundraising writers.

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Our Impact on Giving Tuesday: Jen’s Choice

screen-shot-2016-11-29-at-5-00-07-pmThis Giving Tuesday, I wanted to donate to an organization that was working in several spaces to effect positive change. The Dream Corps supports economic, environmental, and criminal justice innovators — all areas that will need as much support as possible in the next few years. Their initiatives include  programs for low-opportunity youth to learn computer programming skills, summits and workshops to increase awareness around criminal justice issues, and environmental movements that are inclusive of all people and communities. I was especially drawn to this organization after reading its core values, which includes this language: “We lead with empathy. We are committed to the growth and well-being of all people, especially the marginalized and mistreated. We see personal transformation and systemic transformation as interlinked and interdependent. We serve a movement that extends far beyond our own organization. We are committed to creating the conditions for all people to be free.”

  • Posted by Jennifer Clements
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Our Impact on Giving Tuesday: Meg’s Choice

history_jane1This Giving Tuesday, I’m going back to my professional roots—social work. The social work profession has been empowering individuals and communities to improve their lives since the early 1900s by connecting people to the resources they need to improve their lives. Most people think of social workers as therapists, but the profession is much larger and encompasses community organizers, policymakers, non-profit administrators—ahem…even fundraisers.

This year, it feels like the problems of our country and the world are so varied that it is difficult to focus on how to solve them. By supporting the social work profession, we provide the resources needed in each community to address the issues they face. That’s why I am making a donation to the National Association of Social Workers Foundation.

In the words of social work pioneer, Jane Addams, “Progress is not automatic; the world grows better because people wish that it should, and take the right steps to make it better.” Social workers provide the knowledge and skills to make the steps we take the right ones.

Impact is proud to donate to a charity of choice for each of our employees this #GivingTuesday.

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Our Impact on Giving Tuesday: Alanah’s Choice

screen-shot-2016-11-29-at-9-57-42-amThe burn of Hillary Clinton’s loss of the presidential election is still present. My pain isn’t from the fact that we have yet to elect a female as president of the United States. The searing feeling, for me, stems from the fact that we’ve elected someone who does not treat women with respect and dignity.

My #GivingTuesday donation to Running Start helps counter my feelings of despair. Running Start is an organization that supports young women with aspirations of a career in politics. It supports and encourages these women that they can and should enter the political arena. I hope this small donation leads to more qualified, dedicated, and egalitarian political candidates in our very, very near future.

Impact is proud to donate to a charity of choice for each of our employees this #GivingTuesday.

  • Posted by Alanah Rosenbloom
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Our Impact on Giving Tuesday: Amanda’s Choice

freedom_of_speech-300x232To say the election has been a tough one for all of us, is an understatement. But the day after the election, as the city sat in an eerie silence, I received several emails from PEN America letting me know that they were still out there defending my voice, all of our voices. We would be heard. 

And have we made some noise. I have found comfort in reading the posts on PantSuit Nation, or in the open letter from the ACLU in the New York Times, or in the freedom of speech from the cast of Hamilton. 

But I also have friends and family with different viewpoints than me. I respect and love them just the same. They have stories that deserve to be heard as well.

Now more then ever we have to defend or freedom for free expression. So we can continue to tell all of our stories. That’s what I choose this year…the right to keep telling our stories and to have them be heard. 

  • Posted by Amanda Marcucci
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Our Impact on Giving Tuesday: Lisa’s Choice

unday1When I think about how we are going to create a better world I always come back to one essential: education. So this Giving Tuesday, in the wake of recent events that have sorely tested my faith in my fellow humans, I’m choosing to go back to that basic. I’m making my Giving Tuesday gift to the Elizabeth Ann Clune Montessori School of Ithaca (EACMSI).

This school seeks to bring to life Maria Montessori’s belief in, “an education that is capable of saving humanity.” And it succeeds!

In the wake of the recent elections one former student wrote:

“I want to thank you for incessantly preaching peace, acceptance, and love. I am forever grateful for the passion and hope you instilled in me. I carry that with me every day, and especially through the next four years.”