Fundraising Basics: What Do You Want To Make?

Let’s start out with a big wall calendar for the entire year.

 Mark off big dates for financial commitments that have been carried forward or already set from last year, for example when your board meetings are scheduled, deadlines for reports, tax returns, insurance payments, conferences and events that require money to be spent.

This will set up your week, month and quarter for what you know you have to do.

How much do you need?

The first thing to define is what you need to generate to do your work. This will be your budget.

·         What kind of money do you want this year?

·         How much do you absolutely  need this year?

Creating realistic financial targets is critical. If you have not created an annual budget, begin by listing what you know you will have to spend for rent, phone and internet access, salaries, payroll taxes, insurance, filings fees for the state and the Feds.

What does it cost to do the work of your organization, what are your program expenses?  Will you have to rent space, print brochures, travel to events or workshops?

List the activities you plan and the costs, including the ‘little’ things, such as parking or paperclips that are necessary to accomplish your mission.

How much every month, then the extras

So we know how much needs to be raised, and where it will be going and when.  

By breaking the year up into quarters of 3 months each, deciding what to do can be more manageable. When are your traditional fundraising efforts happening? Do they correspond to the timing of your needs?

For each quarter, have a total amount that is due. This will tell you how much money it is going to require to set your feet on the floor each morning- this is the absolute minimum you have to bring in.

Need some help setting up the calendar and managing the calculator? Click here for answers to your questions.