Brice Sokolowski has written his first book which is a real world manual for how to raise funds and do more with your Catholic mission. His book seeks to help readers to stop worrying about money, learn how to fundraise retaining your Catholic identity, be more effective than large charities and learn how to exponentially increase your number of donors, including using technology and automation.
The book is split into 4 sections: mission, mentality, relationships and habits. Brice starts the book by talking about his personal background and his history in fundraising before he started working as a Catholic fundraiser. Brice highlights prayer as central for the mission of any Catholic organisation. He encourages readers to embrace the opportunities to start small as a gift. Organisations must be professional and confident, embrace change and have humility of spirit. They must recognise the value they offer and present it to everyone, measuring so they can improve.
Groups must know how much they want to raise and use the right words, speaking to the right people. Rejection can be embraced as the fuel to improve. A healthy balance needs to be kept between asking and thanking.
In the relationships section, Brice recommends to spend up to 80% of your time meeting people. It is necessary to find the effective board members to guide, pray, give and recruit. It is also important to listen to your community, communicate short, clear messages with a well defined request and keep up to date record that are easy to track. Time should be dedicated to building an engaged community. Volunteers are better at connecting people than raising funds.
In the habits section, Brice suggests getting into a routine so that fundraising becomes automatic. Thanking people often, distributing high-quality content for free to everyone you meet, organising low-cost yet inspiring events and also free events to say thank you is important. Meeting people individually, going digital with your payments and for long term donations is also important. Another habit is sending simple, valuable and consistent messages. It is important to have a simple, beautiful and informative website as well as being active in social media and measuring your presence.
Brice Sokolowski runs the catholicfundraiser.net website. He offers tips on the website to help others to learn more about fundraising to help them become an authority on the topic. You don’t need big appeals or events, can focus on your mission and engage with your audience; your donor and network size don’t necessarily matter and you don’t need to spend thousands of pounds and hours on fundraising.
This is a useful book for people interested in learning more about fundraising and with good tips and ideas about how to improve existing fundraising efforts. I would recommend it to those who are looking to improve their existing current appeals.