By: Erin Williams, Fundraising Auctioneer

Last month we announced a new Client Success Manager, Olivia Newbill. She will be a great support and resource to all of our clients. We are excited to have her on the Raising Paddles team! This means I’ve transitioned to a full-time Fundraising Auctioneer and Consultant. I am thrilled to partner with so many incredible nonprofit leaders and organizations to further help missions that strive to make a difference. 

Today, given the current economic climate, many organizations are feeling uneasy about the future of their missions. Even with the outpouring of support seen by many nonprofits in 2020, many nonprofit organizations are saying inflation is now testing their financial stability and causing key staff to seek higher salaries elsewhere. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) inflation, as measured by the consumer price index, has risen 8.5% over the past 12 months. This increase in overall prices is the largest since 1981. Despite the funds of multi-year grants, nonprofit’s operating expenses have reached record highs. 

So what can be done to not only keep nonprofits afloat but achieve long-term success? Alliance Bernstein, an asset management company, encourages nonprofits to,

Examine their investments and add a diverse, balanced package of stocks with pricing power, inflation-protected bonds, and real assets–like commodity futures, real estate, or infrastructure in addition to other assets. By having robust investment portfolios, nonprofits can reduce the consequences of historic inflation levels and be situated for long-term success.

While there is no step-by-step plan to guarantee success, nonprofits can manage inflation by protecting assets to help ensure long-term success. 

According to the Giving USA 2021 Annual Report, Americans gave $471.44 billion in 2020, reflecting a 5.1% increase from 2019. While corporate giving in 2020 decreased to $16.88 billion, reflecting a 6.1% decrease from 2019. So, remember to make special efforts to show appreciation and steward relationships with the individuals who showed up for your mission during the 2020 giving spike. It’s more important than ever to create unique opportunities for your individual donors to gather together, see the influence of a unified community, and grasp the impact of their donations to your organization. 

It is easy to think that undertaking additional expenses–such as hosting a fundraising gala–may not be best for your organization; however, I advocate that these events are vital to the growth and longevity of your organization. Fundraising events, like a gala, allows your donors to tether their hearts and wallets to your mission. Our team has some ideas and strategies to help you engage and retain these donors even at a time of record high inflation. 

I’d love to discuss further and hear your thoughts! You can email me directly at