Funding for faith-based nonprofits should look different from other nonprofits. The “faith-based” affiliation changes how we look at what we do and should look different to those looking in as well. Yes, we need funding just like all the others but the way we go about getting it should reflect our faith and the beliefs we hold about who is the ultimate Provider for us personally, our mission, and our sustainability. We rely on God for all of these things and the way we approach funding should be a reflection of that.
Here are some questions to ask yourself about how you are doing things now:
- How is your faith-based nonprofit being funded?
- Do your solicitations look any different than those of every other nonprofit?
- What strategies do you use to raise money?
Funding for faith-based organizations should look and feel different than funding for other nonprofits. Faith-based nonprofits need to recognize that God is in charge. This means that instead of ever using deceptive or manipulative practices to raise money, the organization needs to set itself apart and share what God is doing in the ministry. When seeking individual gifts from donors or grant funds from a foundation, we need to remember that God owns everything anyway. We are simply the sowers of seed (information about the ministry) and God is the harvester (bringing in the money).
For many, this is uncomfortable. We are told that our job is to raise money and quite often, that’s how we are evaluated. Take yourself out of the equation for a moment though and reflect on why you are doing what you are doing. What is it about your mission that makes you excited to put your feet to the floor each morning? That “thing” is your job: to bring those visions and dreams to fruition.
It is also reality though that you need funding to accomplish the goals of your organization. Remind yourself that we are all stewards of God’s resources. This will humble you, take some of the pressure off, and make seeking funding from others an easier task to approach. When you truly believe that it is all God’s anyway, you can be bold in sharing what you are doing and in inviting others to get involved financially with your mission. Even the mission itself is ultimately God’s mission anyway. Trust that God will supply all of our needs. He simply expects us to be obedient and faithful in the work we are called to do.
“Commit your activities to the Lord and your plans will be achieved.” Proverbs 16:3 (CSB)Photo Credit: SophieG