Fundraising indicators for success

By Hanne Aertgeerts (VUB), Maurice de Greef (VUB), Janet Looney (EIESP) and Laura Peciukonyte (PPMI)

Team 8 of the ELINET network has conducted seven case studies of effective practices in 7 ELINET member organisations. These case studies focused on the processes of  awareness- and fundraising for low literacy in these member organisations and among policy makers in Europe. One of the main goals of Team 8 (as part of the ELINET network) is to draw on the results of these case studies and the literature review to develop a detailed list of detailed list of indicators (and examples), which can possibly be used in order to develop successful awareness or fundraising campaigns for low literacy. Team 8 has developed an overview and analysis of indicators for success along with the description of the different case studies and pilots concerning awareness and fundraising for low literacy in Europe.

A current report, along with the earlier ELINET report on ‘success indicators’ for awareness and fundraising campaigns, cover the full cycle of campaign development, implementation and impact monitoring (Ceneric et al., 2014 ). The campaign goals and strategy discussed in this report, and impact indicators discussed in the earlier report, need to be aligned.  Indeed, impact evaluations should provide information necessary to reinforce and improve future campaign development and implementation.

The earlier ELINET report provided a meta-analysis of 52 evaluations of impact of awareness raising and fundraising campaigns. It identified nine commonly used indicators of success in different sectors (Masiulienė et al., 2015 ).  The majority of the evaluations identified for the earlier report were for health campaigns (a few evaluations of adult education campaigns were also identified), but as highlighted in the case studies of literacy campaigns conducted for this report, they are similarly focused on influencing understanding, mind set and behaviours. Figure 1 shows the interconnection between the main elements, indicators and the elements of success.




Interconnection between elements, indicators and common elements of success of awareness raising and fundraising

For the 9 success indicators identified in the earlier report with the appropriate common elements of successful campaign development and implementation identified in the current report click here

Ultimately, each campaign should be tailored to the local context and target audience. The common elements of success identified in this report provide a framework for campaign development and implementation. These elements serve as general principles to guide each campaign, rather than as a rigid set of rules or a recipe.  The indicators, which should be clearly linked to each campaign’s goals and strategy, provide information on whether campaigns are meeting their goals and areas where improvements may be needed. 
For the total report click here: Aertgeerts  et al., 2015.

The investigated good practices of fundraising for low literacy are:

1. Asociata Lectura si Scrierea Pentru Dexvoltarea Gandiri Critice Romania - Romania:

The Asociata Lectura si Scrierea Pentru Dexvoltarea Gandiri Critice Romania is commonly translated as ‘Romanian Reading and Writing for Critical Thinking Association’. This non-profit organisation supports teachers and contributes to efforts to support access to quality education for all. The Association supports its members by organising training courses and conferences. They have also participated in international consortia working on targeted European-funded projects.

2. The Swedish Arts Council and partners - Sweden:

The Swedish Arts Council provides grants to reading organisations, which together meet a range of needs. Corporate philanthropy to promote literacy issues is rare. However, the partnership between the Läsrörelsen Association and McDonald’s stands out. In many ways, it complements the public investments of the Arts Council. The partnership began serendipitously 15 years earlier. An earlier request to a paper company for a donation of paper for a book for readers with dyslexia had not been granted, but two years later, the company contacted the group to lead a McDonald’s project to books to children. The books are published in all the Nordic languages, and a recent book was also translated to Somali. The partnership between a global ‘big food’ company and a small literacy organization is not necessarily a natural one, but can be important to reach out to families in places where they spend time together.

3. Beanstalk – United Kingdom:

Beanstalk has developed a mix of strategies to raise and sustain interest in literacy challenges and volunteer opportunities. The most significant campaign was with The Evening Standard, a free newspaper with a circulation of about 900,000. In partnership with Beanstalk, the paper published a series of stories. The series began by citing statistics on the scale of the challenge of low literacy for school-aged children. This was followed by stories focused on human interest stories. During the campaign, a school with particularly challenging circumstances was adopted as the ‘flagship’ for the campaign. The school was featured in a major Evening Standard story. They received funding and were allocated several Beanstalk reading volunteers to help children to meet reading targets. In addition to the partnership with The Evening Standard, Beanstalk has sponsored a Reading Festival (with 10.000 participants gathering in Trafalgar Square to read), celebrity ambassador school visits, and more targeted campaigns to recruit volunteers from different associations (retirees, police, and so on).