Last Fall, facing a cold winter ahead without heat, the historic First Lutheran Church in Over-the-Rhine, Cincinnati, was seriously in danger of having to close many of its valuable services to the community.
Bountiful Harvest knew that helping raise capital funds for First Lutheran would be a unique challenge. Working with a committee of people from First Lutheran and other area Lutheran churches, a strategic plan was set in place and the campaign was begun.
Taking the capital campaign far beyond the church's sphere and into other area churches and communities, success was celebrated when the church was able to install a heating system as well as air conditioning. Happily, worship and Sunday school as well as community services continued, including the Drop Inn Shelter and Community Lunches.
Bountiful Harvest president John Young presented a commemorative plaque in July to First Lutheran's Pastor Fred Cook celebrating the church's dedication to serving the Over-the-Rhine community.
Vice President of Communications/Consultant
Bountiful Harvest Consulting
We have all heard the old adage, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.”
Although a bit hackneyed, the words are strangely applicable to the art of raising funds in today’s questionable financial climate.
For those of you working on annual campaigns
where giving ranges from $25 to $2500, there is some encouraging news. Donors of modest amounts tend to give more aggressively during tough times. It is typical that lower income donors give more aggressively because they have often needed and used the services that you are trying to fund and provide.
For those of you who are contemplating major gift or capital campaigns
where the giving can range from $5,000 to $1,000,000, some care in reading the financial climate is in order. It can be tricky to time a campaign to coincide with an economic turnaround. Corporate contributions that are outside foundations may recover more swiftly than foundation giving. Older donors dependent on investment income will have to become optimistic before they commit $50,000 to that new church sanctuary.
All of this having been said, it would be prudent to begin to plan for your campaign even though the kickoff may be delayed. Selecting an architect for a building or capital project and gathering information from your staff, volunteers or congregation is not expensive and it will enable you to respond more quickly when the turnaround does come.
Bountiful Harvest Consulting
helps you arrive at these decisions through its Visioning and Values Retreat.
Once consensus is reached, Bountiful Harvest offers several ways to pay for your campaign. We can give you a package price to roll into your goal, or we will perform our services on an hourly basis, which allows you to do this preparatory work with professional advice at a modest cost. We recently ran a campaign to reduce debt on a church facility that was not fully funded 3 years ago in a campaign run by one of our competitors. The goals were identical and while the first campaign with our competitor cost $38,000, our services were provided for less than $15,000. That is good value in an adaptable package!