Saving threatened habitats worldwide


6 January, 2011 - 14:31 -- John Burton

The Institute of Fundraising (IoF) is apparently "considering plans to make continuous professional development compulsory for any fundraiser who wants to be a member of the organisation."

I have hired professional fundraisers in the past, but in order to do their job they need a lot of support and take up a huge amount of staff time. Within the WLT I believe we are all fundraisers. Every single person plays a role in raising funds. The primary function of the WLT is to raise funds for our Partner Organisations to acquire and protect land. None of us have been trained as fundraisers, and none of us would consider ourselves fundraisers, and none of us would ever consider joining the IoF. But we have raised significant funds, and we do this by being good at our jobs and working together as team.

I personally believe that fund raising is a non-job, except in the case of volunteers tin-rattling, or out-of-work actors chugging.  Grant applications are best written by those involved with spending and managing the money, corporate liaison is best dealt with by knowledgeable enthusiasts, who understand what the organisation is achieving. Public outreach can be dealt with by the Web team.  Fundraising for a charity is something one should feel passionate about – it is not like selling washing machines or just another commodity.

A look at JustGiving or Virgin websites highlights some of our fundraisers -- individuals doing their bit, unpaid, but enthusiastic, and motivated.  If any one reading this feels like fundraising for the WLT have a look through the WLT fundraising pages.

As readers of my blogs will know, I have very little time for professional fundraisers. In my experience they are a waste of money, and in many cases are simply highly paid individuals taking the credit for work done by other members of an organisation’s staff. Pause for attacks by members of the IoF.

But what do you the supporters of the WLT think?


Submitted by Dominic Belfield on

The trouble is though, charity and fundraising has become such a huge ‘business’. How can you blame the huggers and chuggers for not seeing it as a highly lucrative little earner?
Then there is the added bonus of the feel-good factor which adds that warm, rosy glow in any even vaguely charitable activity.

Did anyone else hear Edward Sturton’s horrific radio documentary on Haiti last week on BBC Radio4? It became disgustingly apparent how more than a few western (and largely Christian missionary) charities were muscling in on the misery and mayhem surrounding Haiti’s woes and travails, and reaping huge dollops of dosh off well-meaning white folkes back home, wanting to do their bit for poor old Haiti.

Only trouble is that the people of Haiti are receiving very little in the way of hard benefits for all this ‘charidee’, as the ‘workers’ go roaring around their island on freshly procured 4 wheel drive SUV’s, pointing at things as they “consult” their way to a fat pay-off.

So now we have a new accronym : MONGO’s. Know what a Mongo is? “My Own NGO” ! Yes, if you’re rich and feeling virtuous enough, you can ease those guilty heart pangs with your very own charity, or Foundation, or whatevah-NGO. And if it’s good enough for the world’s richest man (Bill Gates), why shouldn’t we all aspire to spread some lurve somewhere foreign?

There’s big money in poor people. Just a pity that they don’t get to see any of it. But – hey – THAT’S why they’re poor!

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