“Leave something behind, be curious, and surround yourself with good people”.
These are simply a few of the takeaways I left Fundraising Day 2019 with; and as a first-time attendee I can confidently say that as I boarded the Lakeshore West train I was heading back home with a number of new tools in my fundraising toolkit.
I am early on in my career as a professional fundraiser, and have been a member of the AFP for less than a year. Always eager to learn and improve my skill-set I decided that it was time for me dig deeper and dive into my fundraising education. So naturally I found myself on AFP Toronto’s Fundraising Day 2019 website, hovering over the “complete registration” button. At first I was a bit hesitant as not only would I not know anyone, this would be the first time I’ve attended an event like this. Of course, I could hear the little fundraiser voice in the back of my head saying “you won’t know unless you ask”, or in this case, attend. So after debating over which sessions I wanted to participate in I found myself looking at that same registration button, and clicked.
May 30, 2019 – I was at a conference today filled with around 500 attendees from small to large not-for profit organizations. The conference, called Fundraising Day and appropriately themed “The Fabric of Fundraising” in celebration of its 25th year, was organized by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Greater Toronto Chapter. I made remarks at one of the sessions at the conference about the importance for fundraisers to understand the changing fabric of Canada.
Canada now has over 40,000 immigrants every year and 7.1 million Canadians’ mother tongue is neither English nor French. By 2036, 34% of Canadians will be multicultural consumers. Charities and not-for-profit organizations have to understand that their current and future donations, sponsorships, volunteers and employees will come from these immigrants. Fundraisers need to adapt their fundraising and marketing strategies to the fast changing demographics. With that being said, I wonder how many of them have hit some roadblocks along the way before they realized they need a different approach to this unique audience segment.
The Chinese, for example, are known for their charitable giving and generosity, but they are not keen to give just because you have a good cause. With so many good causes, how can you push the right buttons to get results? Many organizations make the mistake of asking before the right relationships have been built. From my own personal history and experience, I have learned that doing business with the Chinese requires building positive relationships and trust. This same principle applies to fundraising in the Chinese community (and in the sector at large). While immigrant Chinese are trying to integrate into the Canadian culture, it is important to keep in mind that most were brought up with a very different set of values, which still shape how they think and behave.
So, how do we embrace these values and diversity in our fundraising?
We are fortunate to work with outstanding volunteer leaders, donors, organizations, corporations and professionals in advancing the important work of charities each day. Every year, at our Philanthropy Awards presentations, we honour and celebrate the incredible contributions of time, leadership and financial support made by organizations and individuals who inspire generosity and giving.
The 2019 AFP Greater Toronto Chapter Philanthropy Awards Luncheon will be held in conjunction with Congress on Wednesday, November 27, at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in Toronto.
We are proactively encouraging applications from qualified candidates who demonstrate a strong commitment to inclusion and reflect the wonderful diversity of our city and region. The AFP Greater Toronto Chapter Philanthropy Award categories are (click download to save entries in application forms):
The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Greater Toronto Chapter is proud to announce Kirstin Ling of Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation (TGWHF) as the recipient of the 2019 New Fundraising Professional Award.
Described by peers as a passionate and motivated young professional who is driven by the opportunity to serve her community, Kirstin has made an impact early on in her career. As a Principal Gift Manager at TGWHF, Kirstin is the campaign lead for Emergency, Nephrology, Hematology, Otolaryngology, Nursing and Health Professions portfolios. She is currently overseeing the Emergency Department’s campaign to raise $25M at the Toronto General Hospital to transform emergency care by providing a space focused on patient experience to provide exceptional and compassionate care.
Inspired by a personal experience as the primary caretaker for her father, Kirstin made the decision to transition from working in youth-focused international development organizations to healthcare. Born and raised in Toronto, within the Sunnybrook catchment area, she raised more than $2M for Sunnybrook Foundation prior to joining TGWHF. This includes the creation of funds for Brain Sciences Research Students and Complex Malignant Haematology. Read more »
Ann Rosenfield shares her thoughts on how the sector has changed over the past 25 years…
You’ve come a long way, baby. Maybe.
“Let’s face it. Women are not major donors.” said the head of fundraising in my first job in 1994. Some things have sure improved since then while other areas are the same, or worse. In honour of this year’s Fundraising Day throwback theme, here’s what’s what in our profession then and now.
Same as it ever was, same as it ever was
What’s with us fundraisers and planned giving? In 1994, fundraisers were always trying to carve out some time for planned giving with limited success. The same issue still seems true today. As a sector, we still seem to think this is something to focus on tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow. This short-sighted approach is part of a continuing problem with an over-emphasis on immediate revenue over long-term growth and stability.
Meanwhile direct mail has proved the doomsayers wrong! Back in 1994, you would have heard all kinds of workshops on how direct mail was going to disappear. While mail has changed with the times, paper letters in paper envelopes are still an important part of a fundraising strategy.
In 1994 all jobs were permanent, full-time positions with benefits and pensions. The rise of contract employment has meant that young professionals (and even senior leaders) find themselves in unstable employment today. This is bad for us as professionals and bad for the field. In a sector that is supposed to provide solutions to social problems, it is inexcusable that an increasing segment of our employees can’t enjoy stable, secure employment with benefits. Read more »
Watch our Chapter President, Caroline Riseboro’s TEDxDon Mills talk on the importance of men being allies in the fight for gender equality.
The march for gender equality is being held back because there are not enough men invested in its success. Women, we must insist men are at the table. Men it’s time for you to lean in. And this is perhaps the most important – make the case for why gender equality is a win-win, not zero-sum game. Gender equality is good for everyone.
Caroline is the President and CEO of Plan International Canada and Canada’s Most Powerful Woman Top 100 Award Winner 2017 & 2018. She has been an active community member and a member of several non-profit boards. As the youngest person to ever lead a major Canadian charity, Caroline is a passionate advocate for gender equality and is recognized for her commitment to tackling some of the world’s most pressing issues.
Click here to learn more about how AFP is working towards #genderequality and how you can get involved in the Women’s Impact Initiative (#WIILead).
The AFP Greater Toronto Chapter is now accepting nominations for the 2019 New Fundraising Professional Award. Established in 2001, this award recognizes fundraisers who are making an outstanding contribution to the profession early on in their careers.
We are inviting submissions to nominate chapter members with 2 to 5 years of full-time fundraising experience. Candidates must have demonstrated early fundraising success, articulated their short- and long-term career objectives, and demonstrated a commitment to volunteering and service to the profession.
Please take a moment to consider nominating an AFP Member whose work has provided a powerful inspiration to others, and who has made a commitment to building a career in the non-profit sector. Self-nominations are welcome. The individual will be honoured at the AFP Greater Toronto Chapter’s Fundraising Day Luncheon on Thursday May 30, 2019.
The deadline for receiving the completed nomination formis Monday April 22nd.
If you have any questions, please contact Cynthia Quigley, Director AFP Canadian Services & Greater Toronto Chapter at 416-941-9212 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your commitment to advancing ethical fundraising and for your continued support of AFP.
Krishan Mehta, PhD Chair, New Fundraising Professional Award Selection Committee Association of Fundraising Professionals Greater Toronto Chapter
It’s hard to believe that today (April 1) is the first anniversary of Robert Pierre Tomas’ death. He was a dedicated activist and fundraiser and such a vibrant, loving and generous presence.
It seems a fitting tribute to launch a scholarship for post-secondary study/training in his honour. The award will be given to a gay or lesbian student who is a new Canadian (just as Robert was when he arrived here in 1986).
The scholarship will be offered by the Canadian Safe School Network – you can learn more and donate here.