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Using Peer-to-Peer fundraising during a time of crisis – Helping Mamas

Fundraising During COVID-19 is a topic popping up in all our professional networks. There is lots of discussion on “to ask or not to ask” when it comes to non-profits and fundraising.

As towns, cities and states mandated shelter in place for residents the economy, as we knew it, was turned upside down. Jobs were lost, people were furloughed, salaries were cut, and those already facing economic hardships found themselves in impossible positions.

I found it interesting to see all the nonprofits questioning whether they should be making an ask to their community for donations, despite their services often holding together the survival of many through their efforts.

Many nonprofits support those living paycheck to paycheck who sometimes make decisions between paying the utility bill and buying food. To stop fundraising during COVID-19 is not an option for most nonprofit organizations survival.

LHM Strategic offers consulting and services related to development planning and integrating development into your communications strategy. So, this question of “if” and “how” to ask was something we had no choice but figure out for the clients we currently serve. Like many other consulting agencies who primarily serve nonprofits or small businesses, we know our projects and retainers could be on the chopping block as budgets get cut across all industries.

One of our development clients, Helping Mamas, provides vital resources and necessities to mothers and babies throughout Georgia. We assist with events—yeah like the in-person kind—for the organization. They have two amazing events each year and we were looking forward to working on taking them even further this year with development strategy and the compassion of the communities they serve.

Like most of our nonprofit clients, special events are a key part of their development strategy each year. So the pandemic and ability to still host such events has had a monumental impact on their plans this fiscal year. As we mentioned in our post on “To Ask or not to Ask,” we would not let this stop us. LHM strategic is committed to our clients and supporting the good work they do for the people they serve.

Peer to Peer Development Fundraising During COVID-19

For Helping Mamas, the appeal is more often than not well received. Helping mothers and their children is typically something most people are on board with supporting. Our team was discussing how we were going to shift gears and fund the increased need for their services when we decided to focus on a peer-to-peer fundraising approach.

That’s when the “Helping Mamas Front Porch Project” was born. We had seen this Front Porch phenomenon take place across the nation as a way for photographers to raise some money or continue working in a safe way. However, the Georgia shelter in place made it illegal to operate nonessential businesses. Turing this for profit tactic into a peer-to-peer fundraiser was a great way to get each community we serve involved and engage and ignite new ambassadors (the photographers) for Helping Mamas.

We developed a promo kit with social media graphics and instructions on how to participate and started reaching out to local photographers. The response was amazing! One photographer, Spence Livingston, has already adopted this fundraiser and to our surprise, helped us develop and recruit more participants. She alone raised more than $10,000 for Helping Mamas with her Front Porch sessions!

The keys to success for this fundraising effort COVID-19 were:

Overall, this campaign has been and continues being a huge success, and is a great example of the power of peer-to-peer fundraising. LHM Strategic assessed the current situation and developed a creative solution for raising funds. The fundraiser itself took only a few hours to design and develop. Then we recruited photographers, and monitored the campaign and online interactions between photographers and donors.

Fundraising during COVID-19 how to use peer-to peer fundraising

Fundraising during COVID-19 is not an easy task for anyone. We are so proud of Helping Mamas and the photography industry in the Atlanta area. LHM Strategic is honored to help with Helping Mamas’ mission and continues assisting in expanding their development efforts this year! For more information or to donate visit: helping mammas.org

Special thanks to all the photographers:

Spencer Livingston Photography

Whitney Huynh Photography

Tessa DiLeo – Buck and Wally

Jeff Clough

Avery Sechrest

Stafford Studio

And all other photographers and families who helped and continue to help with this effort!

Looking for some help fundraising During COVID-19 or taking your organizations development efforts to the next level? We would love to help! Contact us today. laurie@lhmstrategic.com

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