Funding Centre Manifesto
These are the defining values that underline and drive our work to lead the fundraising knowledge revolution in Australia:
- Small is good.
Small to medium not-for-profits punch above their weight when it comes to creating stronger, healthier communities. Most are entrepreneurs of the highest order, yet many are engaged in a soul-destroying struggle for the basic funds they need to operate. Accessible training coupled with timely and relevant information can help to mitigate this problem.
- Money is good.
They may not work for profits, but not-for-profit organisations do need money. Fundraising for most not-for-profit groups remains narrow, limited, ad hoc and precarious. Grants are good, but a mixture of grants alongside many other sources of funding is much, much better.
- Money management is imperative.
Fundraising is just the first part of financial literacy. To make the most of their fundraising dollars, all organisations must become more efficient and effective money managers.
- Technology is good.
From online and telephone-based donations to crowd-sourcing to powerful new communication tools, the technological revolution has offered unprecedented opportunities for not-for-profit organisations to improve their fundraising capabilities. Many of these new tools are cheap. But access to good-quality information and skills can be expensive. Grassroots groups must not be locked out by these barriers.
- Information is power.
All not-for-profit organisations, regardless of their size, type or political might, should have easy access to timely, practical, jargon-free information about all relevant funding opportunities.
- Funders must radically change their structures and practices.
From tax laws that disadvantage some of the most effective community builders to clunky application processes to disrespectful monitoring practices, there is so much that needs to be fixed when it comes to providing funding in Australia. We have laid out our arguments for grantmaking reform in the Grantmaking Manifesto, which can be downloaded here.
- Teach them to fish.
In order to be strong and sustainable, not-for-profits need to stand on their own two feet. They should not be spoon-fed information about funding and grants, but instead given the tools to develop their own knowledge and expertise. Every not-for-profit organisation in Australia (and every business and government entity that needs funds) should have or be given a Funding Centre subscription – a vital tool in helping them to seize control of their own financial destiny.
The Funding Centre, as with the Our Community Group as a whole, is evolutionary as well as revolutionary. We have a number of staged developments in train.