Fundraising Letter Guide for Non Profit Causes
Raising funds for non-profit causes may prompt you to ask for help and write letters requesting donations. A good donation request letter is therefore a formal letter that speaks and appeals to its intended audience and not just any letter copied from another organization. If you’re passionate about certain causes or are already working for a non-profit organization, then writing donation request letters may already be in your agenda of things to do. Learning the art of letter writing specifically to get donations may just be what you need to fund a worthy cause and do acts of good deed.
There are times when a potential donor simply doesn’t give because nobody has tried asking in the first place. Writing a donation request letter is therefore an important part of getting support whether it is in the form of monetary or service contribution. This article is all about the fundraising letter for non-profit causes. Let this be a guide for people with good hearts to raise funds and continue doing good things for society.
Important Parts of a Good Donation Request Letter
Here are some key points that every formal donation request letter must have. Some may already be obvious but are still included in this guide for information.
- Heading – This is located at the topmost part of the letter and usually appears as a letterhead. The heading contains the name of your organization, its address, telephone numbers and other contact details. Organizations that have printed stationery may already have a heading printed. If not, you should provide this information as it must be clear where the letter is coming from.
- Date – The complete date must be specified for every formal letter. The date should appear as month, day and year or day, month and year. The month must also be completely spelled out with no shortcuts or abbreviations. For example, you should write December 10, 2012 and not Dec. 10, 2012.
- Inside Address – This is the addressee or the person you’re sending the letter to. It is always a plus if you’re able to write the recipient’s complete name and full address rather than putting incomplete and incorrect information. A well written inside address shows that you gave careful attention to the letter and did your research. Make sure that the name and designation are all correct, and that the inside address is written at the left margin of the paper.
- Salutation – As much as possible, try to greet the recipient with his/her own name rather than using generic greetings like “Dear Sir/Madam” or “To Whom it May Concern”. Addressing the person with his/her name gives a more personal yet respectful tone. Use “Dear Jane”, for example if you’re particularly close to the recipient. However, for a more professional approach, use “Dear Ms. Johnson” instead. Always end the salutation with a colon, as you are writing a formal letter.
- Body of the Letter – This is where you send your message across and inform the reader about the main purpose for writing the letter. Tell your story and the cause that needs funding. Also inform the recipient about the benefits that he can gain from donating to your cause. Talk less about you and the organization and focus more about the benefits and what can be achieved with every donation. You can also write about the goals of the organization, where the proceeds of the donation will go to, and the accomplishments of your organization. Cite special cases or stories where the organization has helped someone and made a difference in that person’s life. This part of the letter has to be highly engaging so the recipient will be moved and decide to donate and help you raise funds.
- Complimentary Close – You can close the letter by saying, “Sincerely yours”, “Truly yours” or any other traditional complimentary close. This should be marked by a comma at the end.
- Name and Signature – Sign your name under the complimentary close. Write as well your complete name and designation under your signature. Remember to use black ink when you sign formal documents such as donation letters of request.
More Helpful Tips in Writing Donation Letters of Request
Just like in sales and marketing, it pays to know your customers and their needs. Writing a donation request letter is also the same thing. Know your donors most especially those who frequently donate to your cause. There’s a higher chance that they will donate again so track both current and potential donors. Letting your donors know that they are very well appreciated and that you know them by heart is very important.
Don’t forget to end the body of the letter by asking for a donation. This way your message is clear and the recipient won’t easily forget about it. A call to action is also a plus like providing a toll free number or an email address. Attaching a reply envelope with a stamp is also another way of making donations easy for your recipients as they simply need to fill up the details and send the letter.
This may not be necessary but saying thank you in advance often generates a positive outcome. Show gratitude to the reader for taking the time to read your letter. Also acknowledge donors who have already made contributions in the past. End with a strong close as well like a moving quote or the organization’s slogan. Write a final sentence that will stick in the minds and hearts of your recipients. Oftentimes a P.S. statement is added at the bottom part of the letter after the signature and designation. The post script can further reinforce your message and idea.
Help Fund a Worthy Cause by Writing Donation Request Letters
By writing donation letters, you’re able to help a worthwhile cause generate funds and come up with helpful projects for the community. Probably anyone can be able to write a donation request letter, but the good ones are those that are honest and professional. Start writing one today and contribute to something that’s worthwhile and truly fulfilling.