In Honor of Independence Day…The Donor Bill of Rights

A donor-centered mindset is critical for fundraising success. But it can be a difficult focus to maintain when faced with board relations, staff management, internal meetings, event planning, and all of the other diverse tasks that make development work so interesting.

I’ve found that the Donor Bill of Rights (officially termed “A Donor Bill of Rights”) is a fabulous tool for reminding me of basic donor-centered practices. The Donor Bill of Rights is also a solid guidepost to help navigate ethical issues, especially for board members or other volunteers who may have less practical work experience with fundraising ethics.

Donor Bill of Rights

The Donor Bill of Rights was created to help ensure that philanthropy merits the respect and trust of the general public and that donors and prospective donors can have full confidence in the nonprofit organizations they are asked to support. The 10 basic rights begin with #1:  Donors have the right to be informed of the organization’s mission, of the way the organization intends to use donated resources, and of its capacity to use donations effectively for their intended purposes. Yep, great reminder!

If you haven’t looked at the Donor Bill of Rights lately, I encourage you to do so – perhaps this week in honor of the U.S.’s Independence Day. Your donors put a tremendous amount of trust in you to ensure these rights on behalf of your organization – a quick refresher on how to do this effectively is never a bad idea.

You can download a pdf version of the Donor Bill of Rights in English, French or Spanish from the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) website.

Has the Donor Bill of Rights helped your development office or organization? Please share with us in the Comments box below. Happy 4th of July from Arroyo Fundraising!

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