In recent months and weeks I have been invited to visit with nonprofits in small towns and rural communities across western North Carolina to discuss their endowment funds. Maybe their board of directors transitioned, and they need a refresher course about their endowment. Maybe they are considering establishing an endowment, and their board is curious about utilizing the services of their community foundation to house the endowment.
But, interestingly, I am beginning to hear the sound of a pattern evolving. The pattern might look like this. An agency is considering a capital campaign (for now long-deferred capital needs). What a grand time to establish an endowment campaign for your organization or grow your endowment — through your capital campaign.
Here is the scenario. Your organization is building – so it is a bricks and mortar capital campaign. Can you imagine a better time to grow your endowment in support of the new building, the expansion, new programs in the new building? Consider the wonderful opportunity to grow your endowment by designating a percentage from your capital campaign. Can you imagine how pleased your donors would be to learn that you are not only building for needs now, but planning ahead to fund your organization from your agency’s endowment in the future?
Your donors are likely to become very familiar and comfortable with your endowment through the process, which only increases the opportunity for future gifts.
And it does not stop there. The opportunity to market your endowment fund can then become an integral component of your overall annual resource development plan.
If your nonprofit agency would like to learn more about growing your existing endowment with us, contact me or Beth Boney Jenkins to discuss the opportunities to market your agency’s endowment. We can help, and we can share success stories. And, if by chance, your agency is planning a capital campaign, consider including funding for an endowment.