This is the first in a series of blog posts and video conversations on how to practically integrate Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) and values-based principles into your fundraising practice.
We at The Osborne Group are excited that over the past two years, more and more organizations have considered how they can make their fundraising practice more equitable, inclusive, and in alignment with their organizational values. Indeed, we have been working with many organizations, large and small, helping them to tackle this challenging problem. In years past, these have been conversations we’ve had among ourselves, but rarely with clients. Often clients hired a DEIB consultant to help with their board and staff, hired us to help with fundraising and strategic planning, and we found out about the DEIB consultant, and they about us, coincidentally. It’s only recently that organizations are thinking about DEIB and fundraising more holistically. This is an incredibly important development and all credit to Community Centric Fundraising for pushing the sector to consider DEIB focused fundraising.
I think we can all agree that integrating DEIB principles into your fundraising practice is the right thing to do. We know there are few Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) fundraisers in leadership positions across our sector; we know BIPOC get solicited less than other identities; and we know for some of us, white saviorism has been a problem in our communications.
But there is also a strong business case to be made, and it’s important to point it out. Ultimately, as fundraisers, nonprofit staff, and board members, we are charged with raising money for our important causes. There must be a return on investment. If equitable fundraising doesn’t raise money, it will be abandoned, and we’ll all be worse off because of it.
Fortunately, DEIB-focused fundraising and good fund development practices are very much in alignment. Below are six business reasons why you should make integrating DEIB principles and values with your fundraising a priority.
You will increase your ability to attract and retain outstanding people (staff, volunteers, and donors)
You will strengthen your organization through a diversity of perspectives internally and externally
You will position your organization as an industry leader
You will increase your base of support by including those who have been left out of philanthropy historically
You will be better prepared for the next generation of supporters
You will raise more money for your important mission
Over the course of the next few months and beyond, it is our goal to provide you with specific and practical ways you can apply DEIB principles and values to your fundraising practices. Through blog posts, videos, frameworks, and tools, we hope to provide you with the means to implement effective fundraising with a high return on investment that is also in alignment with DEIB and your organization’s core values.