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Timing Is Everything: The Planned Giving Program Audit and Review, Part 1

Posted July 22nd, 2020

by John Jensen There’s no doubt COVID-19 has had a major impact on nearly every facet of American life; not least of which has been the short- and long-term health of nonprofits. Some are predicting charitable giving will take a downturn in light of economic uncertainty, and many charitable organizations are searching for fundraising strategies …Read More

Sharpening Your Appeal to Donors With Occam’s Razor: Simplicity Is Key

Posted July 22nd, 2020

By Professor Christopher P. Woehrle, JD, LLM The spirit of Occam’s razor1 should drive gift options which benefit both charity and the donor. To relate to the context of gift planning, the complexity of a gift should not be increased without necessity driven by donor needs. Over the years I have noted how development professionals …Read More

When Will I See You Again? An Update on Sharpe Training Events

Posted July 22nd, 2020

In light of the continuing health crisis, Sharpe Group has cancelled all in-person seminars for 2020. As we begin the process of planning seminars for 2021, we will be monitoring the health conditions and CDC recommendations. Our greatest priority is the safety of our attendees and staff. In the meantime, we are making plans to …Read More

Philanthropy Puzzler: Establishing a Scholarship Fund

Posted July 22nd, 2020

The “Philanthropy Puzzler” features gift questions fundraisers may encounter in the field, followed by solutions from our panel of experts. If you would like to send us your own “puzzler,” please email us at with “Philanthropy Puzzler” in the subject line. Philanthropy Puzzler Marsha’s family didn’t have the money to send her to college …Read More

ACGA Announces New Suggested Charitable Gift Annuity Rates

Posted July 22nd, 2020

The American Council on Gift Annuities (ACGA) recently announced new suggested maximum charitable gift annuity rates, effective July 1, 2020. Generally, the recommended payout rates have been lowered by 0.3 to 0.5 percentage points, based on the donor’s age. This translates to a very slight reduction in the overall payment amount. To the right is …Read More

Important Dates for 2020 Year-End Fundraising

Posted July 22nd, 2020

For all of us, fall is traditionally the busiest time of the year. This year, the final three months will be more critical than ever for charitable organizations that have been impacted by COVID-19 and the economic crisis. With hopes of a vaccine on the horizon, donors could have a more positive outlook this fall. …Read More

It’s About Simple, Consistent Communication—A Message From the CEO

Posted July 22nd, 2020

With the global pandemic of the past few months, all of us have experienced the importance of relationships and the challenge of maintaining them when we can’t be together face to face. In my own life, my wife has been in an assisted living facility suffering from advanced Parkinson’s disease. She is fortunate to receive …Read More

After COVID-19 Will There Be a “New Normal” for Donors?

Posted June 4th, 2020

In some parts of the country, governors and locally elected mayors are developing phased-in programs as “safe-at-home” orders are beginning to expire. As it appears, these elected officials are allowing their local businesses and nonprofit organizations to begin to return to, what many are calling, “the new normal.” At Sharpe Group, we have been inspired …Read More

Lessons We’ve Learned From Planned Giving Donors on Managing Times of Crisis

Posted June 4th, 2020

As people and businesses across the country adjust to the difficult circumstances of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, nonprofits are balancing addressing the needs of their donors while trying to ensure the financial well-being of their organization. Five Sharpe Group clients share their experiences and lessons learned while fundraising in unprecedented times. Donors continue to display …Read More

The Value of Stewardship, Part 1 of 2: First, Do No Harm

Posted June 4th, 2020

by Professor Christopher P. Woehrle Supporters with bequest intentions often can be motivated to accelerate their philanthropy during their lifetime. The donor enjoys seeing a personal vision being fulfilled, and the institution showcases its abilities as a good steward of current and future gifts. Ordinarily, connecting a donor’s passion that aligns, at least partially, with …Read More

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