Top of the
Fundraising involves a lot of
paperwork, a lot of ideas, and a lot lists. You
can easily become overwhelmed and lose track of things if you
allow yourself to become disorganized. This is why it is
crucial to stay organized.
The system of organization that
is best depends on you. Some organizations may
have member who knows how to use fundraising software, while
others may use paper filing systems. It does not matter which
organizing method you choose. What does matter is that you use
it faithfully and stay organized. Most of the time the files
will not be maintained by a single person within your
organization but will be spread among several members according
to their responisbilities.
Some of the items
you will need to keep organized during
The paperwork involved in eash specific fundraising effort. You
will be doing more that one a year probably. Keep files on each
fundraiser to evaluate and pass on to the next people in your
organization who may be in charge of fundraising in the
information - Contact information, emergency
information, and any other items of interest pertaining to your
Information - You will need to file away
information about those who have donated to your fundraising -
not only will you want to take care not to contact those people
again too soon, but you will want to contact the same donors
again after some time as they are likely to contribute again.
You will need an organizational system to keep track of who you
should be contacting and when. For each donor, you will want to
keep contact information, amounts donated, times when the donor
donated money, the donor’s preferred method of being contacted,
and the time you should contact them again. It is important
that you keep this information useable.
receipts - Your donors will want to receive
income tax slips to claim their gifts on their taxes. In some
cases, they may write to you again during tax season for
another slip so you may need to produce a copy on short notice.
Also, you will need to keep good records of the money donated
for your group’s state and federal income taxes and other
- You need to file all the information you gather about
potential donors and potential fundraising ideas. This
information needs to be quickly accessible when you start
fundraising in earnest.
•Research on other
Nonprofits - You will want to keep information
about other similar nonprofits with successful fundraising
ideas. You may want to team up with organizations in the
future. And you certainly need to know when other groups in
your community are holding their major fundraising events so
you don't schedule yours at the same time when you are
competing for the same donors.
•Letters - For
your records, you will want to keep track of any letters you
send and the responses you receive.
•Legal Issues -
You will need to file deeds or leases for your group’s space,
licensing agreements, proof that your group is a registered
nonprofit organization, and other legal papers that might be
crucial at a later date.
- Keeping your group’s records and ideas together will
make it easier for you to see who needs to be doing what. You
can also refer to earlier brainstorming sessions if you need to
be reminded why a certain idea was turned down or why someone
was scheduled for a specific task.
•The Operations of Your
Non-Profit - Non-profit groups have lots of
logistical paperwork - utility bills, legal bills, notices from
government about changing laws, and so on. You need to keep
these records together so that any disputes can be resolved
•The Amount of Money being spent,
and the amount of money coming in - Keeping
track of money is crucial in proving that your business is
fundraising in a fair way and in order to prove that your group
really is non-profit. Keep excellent financial records and
check them often - a nonprofit accused to misusing donor funds
often has a terrible time trying to fundraise again. Keep track
of every penny you spend on your group to offset any such
•Time - For a
non-profit, keeping track of time is as important as keeping
track of money.
Keeping track of volunteer time can help you write accurate
reference letters for your workers, and keeping track of time
and money can help you see whether you could be using your time
more productively in order to help more people.