From time to time, an opportunity might arise for a nonprofit organization to work with another nonprofit organization to hold a joint fundraiser. This can be beneficial in many ways for both organizations, but there are few things your organization should consider before agreeing to a joint fundraiser.
- What is the organization’s mission or goal?
Consider what the organization’s intentions are for this fundraiser. Does the end goal line up with what each organization wants? Be mindful that other organizations may not prioritize the same aspects of an event as your organization does.
- What is the organization’s reputation within the community?
This can pertain to their reputation socially, their efficiency and work ethic. It is important to be sure your organization is associated with an organization that has a good reputation, so that the public does not view your organization in a bad light due to being associated with another organization. You also want to ensure that the organization is going to do its part in this joint fundraiser, and not put your organization in a bind.
- What are this organization’s strengths and weaknesses?
It may be ideal for your organization to collaborate with an organization whose strengths and weaknesses complement yours. By using strengths from both organizations, your organizations can take a good fundraiser and make it a great one. Be sure to fully evaluate the weaknesses of the organization to ensure these weaknesses will not cause any problems going forward with the joint fundraiser.
- How will your organizations divide responsibility?
For each organization involved to have an organized and reasonable understanding of its responsibility, be sure to construct a joint fundraising agreement. This is particularly important for large fundraising events, where there may be several committees working on one event.
- Is it necessary to create a joint fundraising committee?
A joint fundraising committee is a committee made up of individuals from each participating organization to focus on the creation and oversight of a fundraiser. This may not be necessary for smaller organizations and events, but for bigger events, a joint fundraising committee may keep both organizations focused and efficient, while still prioritizing on achieving both organization’s goals.
- How will your organizations divide contributions?
This agreement should be considered for both sides and finalized into a written agreement prior to the fundraiser to prevent any issues for distribution. The joint fundraising committee may be responsible for receiving and redistributing contributions after all overhead charges are netted.
While not a comprehensive list of questions to consider prior to agreeing to a joint fundraising event with another organization, this list provides a good starting point. Joint fundraisers are typically very beneficial for both organizations, but it is important to have an agreement and plan in place to ensure the event runs smoothly and each organization knows its responsibilities.
If you have any questions or concerns about your organization’s joint fundraiser, please contact the professionals at Gilliam Bell Moser LLP.
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