With all the uncertainty in the world right now, many of us are facing new challenges. Some are newly remote staff. Some in-person service providers have become virtual service providers. And some of us have become stand-in teachers or childcare providers. Your supporters are facing similar challenges, especially those who are parents.
As a parent, I’m especially thankful for all the educational and entertainment resources available for my children. While reading through various social media posts, I noticed how many parents commented that the organizations providing these sanity-keeping resources will be getting a donation in the future. But can social good organizations provide more? Here are some ideas for how your organization can come alongside and connect with supporters (and prospects) who are parents—and who could probably use a little extra help right now.
Virtual tours are fun for everyone. If your organization has tours or exhibits, provide virtual learning tours for kids. My kids especially like the tours that teach them something new, and that act like the audience is right there in the room. Adding in some questions for kids or funny facts can help keep their attention.
If your organization can’t provide virtual tours, you can still help by providing a list of virtual tours to your supporters. It will still mean a lot that you’re thinking of them and helping.
Educational Streaming Videos
If your organization doesn’t normally think of itself as one that would provide a virtual tour, consider thinking outside the box. Could you provide a tour of your organization itself, explaining how you help provide meals to seniors, save the whales, or find a cure for other health challenges? Ask kids to send in pictures for you to distribute as you fulfill your mission.
Printable Workbooks or Coloring Pages
Maybe your organization can provide downloadable coloring pages or a workbook to help solve a mystery or help with your mission. You could also tie this content into your educational videos or tours, so kids can be part of a virtual scavenger hunt.
Project Boxes or Packets
Many of your supporters are spending much more family time together, so why not make that time more fun by providing something that parents can do with kids? Keep in mind that these projects could be for the family to do together, or just the kids, or even just the parents. Think of things you can include that would be fun or challenging—or even something they may already have inside their house since many are not able to go out.
Once you have created these resources, consider how you will share them with your supporters and prospects—your website, emails, social media, and direct mail. Your wording should build a connection with your supporters and not be just a generic response to what we’re all going through.
Looking for more ideas on how to connect with and retain your donors? Your organization can dive more fully into the concept of showing appreciation and impact in Blackbaud University’s workshop Organizational Best Practices: Fundraising – Donor Retention.
To help the social good community prepare for and respond to any impacts of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Blackbaud has also compiled a list of resources from across the sector that may be useful. Visit www.blackbaud.com/covid-19 for more information.