How to find more money is one of the key problems for most groups.

First of all, consider that money is a means to an end. Do you need actual cash or would something else make a larger difference to your resources. For example, what if an expensive medication was listed on the PBS and all of your group members had an extra $50 per month? What if you got six young law students on your cause? What if your website had a Q&A so you weren’t answering basic questions on the phone?

Thinking about money comes after thinking about strategy, don’t narrow down too quickly. Begin with describing what you want to do and planning out what you need to do it. Someone who is good with numbers will be able to convert your plan into numbers (a budget!).

Develop a “dream” Profit and Loss. Consider what your group would need to earn and would be spending if it was doing everything you want to do. It doesn’t need to be millions, this works with a hundred dollars too.

There’s a push and a pull with gaining income, sometimes donors, sponsors or government have quite different priorities than you do. How are you different? How are you the same? A lot of grant funding tightly specifies what you will undertake for the money. This can lead to mission drift – you get money in but not to do your top priority. Writing a proposal about what you want, where your funding partner is looking for something else, is a guarantee of a rejection letter. Make sure your proposal matches with your target.

It is worth spending some time going through your “overhead” costs and thinking how to minimise them. Most overhead costs can stay very static, regardless of how much work you are doing (eg. insurance, computing, building lease). Sometimes they shift in a step fashion (eg. once we have 10 people, we need to hire a bigger space).

There are lots of resources on the internet for community treasurers, fundraising planners and grant writing.

Talk to us about strategy, resources and fundraising!

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