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What is the best way to reconnect with a previous funder?

BradPhilbrickBradPhilbrick Posts: 2
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edited November 2023 in Grant Writing & Management

Recently, I accepted a position as a grant proposal writer for The Children's Organ Transplant Association (COTA) www.cota.org. They do fundraising campaigns, obtain donations from individuals, and seek grants from foundations; that is now my job!

I already sent many LOIs out to new potential grantors and have sent proposal letters to existing funders seeking renewal of their financial gifts.

Finally, my question is this: How do you correspond to a foundation that has funded you in the past but has not done so for the last 3-5 years? Do you send a letter of inquiry? Do you send a proposal letter asking for funds and remind them of their past donation, e.g., "your donation of $15,000 in 2019..."

I look forward to your advice. This is a new role for me, from writing federal grants to building relationships with foundations.

Thank you hugely,

Brad Philbrick

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    ReneBallesterosReneBallesteros Posts: 9
    First Answer First Comment U.S.A. Photogenic
    edited December 2023 Answer ✓

    Hi @BradPhilbrick,

    Full disclosure, I'm in my first year as well and heading an end-of-year campaign this month. We are a growing nonprofit, and will be connecting to all of our past donors. Phone calls for those we have, and emails for all others.

    The main thing we want to do is thank them and communicate how their donation has helped us grow. "Your investment in us ___ years ago helped catapult us to where we are now." So yes, remind them of their last donation. Since I'm also new, mostly everyone is a new relationship so I'm hoping I can get people to tell me their story of involvement and support.

    Just some initial thoughts. Like I mentioned, I'm new, so other advice is welcome.

    Good luck!

    -René

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    ReneBallesterosReneBallesteros Posts: 9
    First Answer First Comment U.S.A. Photogenic
    edited December 2023 Answer ✓

    Hi @BradPhilbrick,

    Full disclosure, I'm in my first year as well and heading an end-of-year campaign this month. We are a growing nonprofit, and will be connecting to all of our past donors. Phone calls for those we have, and emails for all others.

    The main thing we want to do is thank them and communicate how their donation has helped us grow. "Your investment in us ___ years ago helped catapult us to where we are now." So yes, remind them of their last donation. Since I'm also new, mostly everyone is a new relationship so I'm hoping I can get people to tell me their story of involvement and support.

    Just some initial thoughts. Like I mentioned, I'm new, so other advice is welcome.

    Good luck!

    -René

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    BradPhilbrickBradPhilbrick Posts: 2
    First Comment Photogenic Conversation Starter
    edited December 2023

    Thank you hugely for your insight, @ReneBallesteros! Your ideas are noteworthy indeed. I also contacted Scot Scala, consultant, and one of the trainers of Next Level Grant Training. He too said I should make phone calls and not a letter. The key is communication and like you are doing, building the relationship.

    I was thinking of writing, but phone calls are a better way to go.

    Thank you again, Rene, for touching base with me.

    All the best to you in your endeavors!

    Cheers,

    Brad

    PS I noticed you have the accent symbol above the e in Rene. I recognize that but don't know how to find and use the proper e in Rene.

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