This overview of the state of endowment giving comes at a time of urgent need in the nonprofit sector.
With market returns uncertain and spending restraint difficult, the moderate but measurable increase in donations in the last year invites institutions to consider elevating fundraising to a more strategic position within the organization.
For institutions thatt have historically viewed fundraising tactically, the tasks can seem daunting: building donor records, prioritizing institutional needs, recruiting staff. But the long-term potential rewards from such efforts are themselves strategic and go beyond the issue of the immediate amounts raised.
The formation of strong mutual commitments and ties between the institution and its supporters enhances its ability to articulate institutional goals, promotes honest and deep understanding of donor interests and institutional needs, and ultimately strengthens its ability to fulfill its mission. While the current state of fundraising may be uncertain, its role is not.
No longer optional, an effective fundraising program, consistently implemented, can become a central pillar of support for the institution.