Overcoming Pandemic Communication Challenge

Posted April 8th, 2020

If direct personal contact with your donors is impossible, consider increasing your communications with other methods. For example, if one of your family members was hurting or isolated, abandoning all communications might add hurt or panic. But with a call, a letter or a personal note, you might offer calm assurance and hope in a …Read More

Don’t Give Up on Gift Annuities

Posted April 7th, 2020

Working in the national office of an organization with charitable gift annuity (CGA) donors and annuitants throughout the country, I befriended donors who didn’t have gift planners located in their geographic areas. My desk was basically a call center. And calls about gift annuities came regularly, enough that the organization maintained around 5,000 contracts and …Read More

Fundraising in Uncertain Times

Posted April 2nd, 2020

Virtually every fundraising professional with whom I have been in contact recently would agree that it is not business—or philanthropy—as usual. Since the emergence of a “flu-like” virus in China late last year developed into the COVID-19 coronavirus and a global pandemic, our personal and professional lives have been disrupted in ways that most of …Read More

The CARES Act : Harbinger of Seismic Changes to Charitable Giving Incentives?

Posted April 1st, 2020

By Professor Christopher Woehrle, Chair & Professor of Tax & Estate Planning Department, College for Financial Planning, Centennial, Colorado Among the over 100 provisions of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act are two directly related to charitable giving. The first is an above-the-line deduction against gross income in the amount of $300 for …Read More

Gift Planning in the Time of COVID-19

Posted March 31st, 2020

By Jon Tidd I was going to discuss the differences between men and women as donors in this week’s blog. Coronavirus intervened. Today, few if any charity gift planners are going to meet face-to-face with prospective donors. But that’s not the problem. The problem is, as history shows, that in times of great uncertainty, prospective …Read More

7 Reasons to Stay the Course With Gift Planning Communications

Posted March 29th, 2020

By Aviva Shiff Boedecker, Sharpe Group Senior Consultant A big question on the minds of development officers during this Pandemic Pause is whether to go ahead with scheduled planned giving mailings. Their concerns fall into two categories: Would the mailing be in good taste? Is it safe; can germs be transmitted on paper? I will …Read More

Solidarity in Solitary

Posted March 26th, 2020

In times like these, we can all benefit by following the advice of Mr. Rogers. When he was scared, his mother would tell him to “look for the helpers.” We too, can look for the helpers—our nonprofits, volunteers and donors—as examples of how we can also be of service. The one thing we know is …Read More

Taking the Time to Listen

Posted March 24th, 2020

As a Sharpe Group editor, one of the privileges of my job is interviewing our clients’ donors in order to write stories about their giving. I don’t usually speak in absolutes, but in this instance I will: EVERY donor I’ve ever interviewed—and there are hundreds—has a wonderful story to tell; you’ve just got to listen. …Read More

Communicating Hope

Posted March 23rd, 2020

Sharpe Group has experienced a lot over the past 50+ years in consulting with many of the leading nonprofits on donor stewardship and planned giving. This week brings unprecedented uncertainty to the world, the markets and ultimately to the important missions that our clients devote their careers to passionately serving. With this in mind, we …Read More

The Stock Market in Panic: How Bad Is It?

Posted March 18th, 2020

“Over the last seven sessions, the Dow has lost 2,271 points, or 20.1%. Since hitting an all-time high of 14,164.53 one year ago today, the Dow has lost 39.4%.” “‘We are in a free fall right now and fundamentals have been thrown out the window,’ said Phil Orlando, chief equity market strategist at Federated Investors.” …Read More