Businesses and private organisations are already benefiting from building collaborative relationships. Charities and Not-for-Profit organisations need to start following the collaborative footprint. Working together, doing so will create a bigger impact for their beneficiaries and the community at large.
What are the benefits of collaborating with each other?
There are times when it is hard to get to the “result” working alone or within the boundaries of your own organisation, particularly if your charity is missing vital expertise. Even with the best intentions projects can fail if skills are missing, fundraising is not successful or costs were too high. With the support of a collaborative relationship it is more likely that you will succeed.
Example: Sue was working as a Trustee in a small charity and spend was becoming unmanageable. There was limited time to start saving money before the impact the charity was having would suffer. By collaborating with another larger charity, Sue was able to use their expertise to save costs, in turn Sue’s connections opened up new doors for her collaborative partner! A win win situation.
Sharing the load
Working together charities can share their strengths and together move forward quicker. Arranging a large-scale fundraising event in collaboration can make the tasks more manageable. The marketing, buying, preparation and on-the-day job list not so daunting, with both charities benefiting from the attention and donations.
Example: Sue recently decided she wanted to arrange a charity auction dinner to fundraise, but didn’t have the time alone. Steve was a trustee of another small local charity. Together they arranged a charity dinner and sharing the tasks they were able to get more auction items and a better price for food and service
My connections are your connections
With all the best intentions, it is still somewhat down to the people that you know that can help you get further in business, just as it is for charities. Collaborating with other charities means you could benefit from their connections, just as they can with yours. Getting the message out to more people, the right people can open the doors for bigger impact for the community.
Example: Although small, Sue wished to make a big impact to society from her charitable work and needed an introduction to the Mayor. Steve happened to be friends with the mayor’s husband and was able to offer an introduction, which subsequently turned into a meeting. In turn, Steve was arranging a local fun-run and Sue often sent newsletter to the local residents so was able to give Steve’s event a boost and mention it to the charity followers as a collaborative event.
Have you ever wondered – will that work? Sometimes we can be too passionate about what we are trying to accomplish that even the simplest of ideas can turn sour. Luckily, we all have different experiences, views and expertise, which can be a huge benefit to each other. Brainstorming and talking ideas aloud can give them substance and target, refine them and allow for realistic plans and goals to be prepared, taking the views from an impartial third party.
Example: Sue was trying to raise awareness of a charitable auction but was struggling with the vast array of options available to her to market the event with a limited budget. Sue asked a group of volunteers to spend a few hours with her brainstorming and critiquing the plans, finally refining them into a more manageable list.
Spread the costs
Fundraising costs money and it is not easy for smaller charities to find the necessary funds to make every event successful. However, spreading the cost and asking for donations not just in money but time and expertise from your connections, joining together can mean a greater reward.
Example: Sue felt passionately about her charitable cause and wanted to raise awareness of her upcoming event. She approached local businesses and asked for their expertise in marketing and advertising, print and merchandise.