With and For

with and for

The work of a Fundraiser requires you to be in two different contexts at once.

You must be “with and for” your beneficiaries.  To know what’s going on with them.  To know the needs.  To know the stories.  To know the triumphs and progress.

And you must be “with and for” your donors.  To know what they’re thinking about.  To want them to have a good experience giving to your organization.

It’s easy to set up camp in just one place.  To be so donor-focused that boundaries are crossed and donors are given too much power.  Or to make overly beneficiary-focused or organization-focused fundraising that largely ignores donors’ wants and desires.

Setting up camp in one place can even feel like you’re taking the high road. 

But the most effective fundraising – for revenue & retention & beneficiaries & donors & the world – is “with and for both.”


Steven Screen is Co-Founder of The Better Fundraising Company and lead author of its blog. With over 25 years' fundraising experience, he gets energized by helping organizations understand how they can raise more money. He’s a second-generation fundraiser, a past winner of the Direct Mail Package of the Year, and data-driven.

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