Concerns about the impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19) underscore the nonprofit sector’s vital leadership role in the welfare of our communities. At CCS Fundraising, our primary interest lies with the health and safety of our people, our nonprofit partners, and those at greatest risk.

We understand that many nonprofit organisations are seeking guidance on how to proceed during this time of uncertainty. CCS has extensive experience over the past 70 years in periods of crisis, economic stress, and natural disasters.

There are several lessons we have garnered through such events. These focus on the importance of continuous communication and engagement with stakeholders, prudent adjustments to short-term fundraising activities, and a commitment to staying the course of an organisation’s overall fundraising plans. Strong leadership and resilience have helped to persevere through challenging times. Nonprofit groups have achieved success through flexibility, creativity, and resolve.

In light of the current and rapidly evolving circumstances, CCS offers the following general principles and specific guidelines around fundraising efforts:

In challenging times, those nonprofit organisations that stay the course and engage extensively with their stakeholders emerge successfully. These periods offer an opportunity for nonprofits to demonstrate their relevance and cement their relationships with their donors and friends. Donors look to these organisations as vital resources. In the past, those donors who stopped supporting specific nonprofits during or after a crisis did so primarily because they no longer felt connected to them.

The last point is particularly significant, as it may feel like now is a moment to pause or delay your activity. It is very important to note that in previous downturns, those who continued to push forward in their efforts ultimately succeeded, and those who took a step back lost ground.

Thank you for all that you do to strengthen our communities and improve our world. We hope these basic principles, gleaned though many years of experience and periods of uncertainty, are helpful as you carefully navigate your development and fundraising activity in the coming months.