Posts Tagged ‘fundraising’

Government Grants

Aug
2016
15

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I have been writing government grants now for several years and together with other colleagues have succeeded in obtaining more than $1 million for our clients. I have also been successful with one client in obtaining a $100,000 interest free loan.

The recurring theme that I find intriguing is that so many clients want the money but don’t want to or don’t have the time to put the effort into making it happen. I do understand this so why am I writing this blog?

Whether it’s the federal or provincial government, they are accountable for tax payers’ dollars and need to ensure that all submissions meet the grant criteria. Often I find myself is disagreement with their criteria but it is what it is. There is a silver lining.

Whether the criteria requires you to write a business plan, a marketing plan, job descriptions or obtain properly prepared quotes from third party consultants, it forces you to think, to plan and to ensure that you are going to do what you say you will do (that’s why reimbursement is after you demonstrate proof of payment). Is it so bad to have to write down where you want to go and how you’re going to get there? Our experience has shown that those who do this from the get go, usually get the financial help they are seeking. So approach these opportunities positively for your business, not just as a money “grab”.

I work with businesses and charities to help them do what they do better. If your organization is looking for grant opportunities, create new revenue streams, reduce your costs, examine your operation or even create long term sustainability, I can help you put the pieces of your puzzle together. So why not contact me at 514-947- 3406 or email me: allan@allangroup.ca to learn more.

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Virtually every charity for which I have worked has raised money by holding a variety of charitable events. Many of these events are fabulous – donors, participants and sponsors alike all have a great time with galas, poker tournaments, golf tournaments, concerts, raffles, auctions, bazaars, fashion shows, wine & cheese (Steak & Scotch is better) evenings, Something-a- thon – indeed the list is endless. But how much do they really raise? Does the ROI, if calculated properly, justify the effort that went into creating the event?

I recently visited a potential client who advised me that her organization nets about $200,000 (for 4 events) but the volunteer group is starting to burn out. Clearly, they need to sustain their current fundraising efforts but need to do something else before volunteer burnout sets in completely. I wonder how many other organizations out there are in the same situation.

I have estimated that to plan a major event (to net $150,000) requires at least 445 professional hours and at least 10 – 20 volunteers that put in 100 hours each over a 6 month period. For this exercise, let’s assume 15 volunteers@100 hours. In total we are talking about 1945 professional and volunteer hours to make this event happen. Let’s assume their combined average cost is $50 per hour. So the labour cost for this event is just over $97,000. Assuming all other costs are factored out by sponsorship, ticket sales, etc. breakeven is $97,000. If the net was $150,000, the ROI would be 1.54. Is this acceptable? At the end of the day, what ROI makes the cost worthwhile? And is there an opportunity cost, that is, could more money be raised for the same effort?

I work with charities and non-profits to help them do what they do better. If your organization is looking to increase its ROI, contact me at 514-947- 3406 or email me: allan@allangroup.ca to discuss what we can do for you.

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Events Are Great – But Do They Maximize Your Return?

Virtually every charity for which I have worked has raised money by holding a variety of charitable events. Many of these events are fabulous – donors, participants and sponsors alike all have a great time with galas, poker tournaments, golf tournaments, concerts, raffles, auctions, bazaars, fashion shows, wine & cheese (Steak & Scotch is better) evenings, something-a-thon – indeed the list is endless. But how much do they really raise? Does the ROI, if calculated properly, justify the effort that went into creating the event? Taking the time to do statistical analyses will answer this question for you.

I recently visited a potential client who advised me that her organization nets about $200,000 (for 4 events) but the volunteer group is starting to burn out. Clearly, they need to sustain their current fundraising efforts but need to do something else before volunteer burnout sets in completely. I wonder how many other organizations out there are in the same situation.

I have estimated that to plan a major event requires at least 445 professional hours and at least 10– 20 volunteers that put in 100 hours each over a 6 month period. For this exercise, let’s assume 15 volunteers@100 hours. In total we are talking about 1945 professional and volunteer hours to make this event happen. Let’s assume their combined average cost is $25 per hour. So the labour cost for this event is just over $48,000. Assuming all other costs are factored out by sponsorship, ticket sales, etc. break-even is $48,000. At the end of the day, what ROI makes the cost worthwhile? And is there an opportunity cost, that is, could more money be raised for the same effort?

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