Someone once told me that after a storm you will always find a rainbow. These tragedies bring out the best in most people. The affects, however, are long felt.
What’s changed since Andrew first came to shore in Miami is how we are using technology to coordinate support and fundraising. It is a mixed blessing as it seems that those that respond first in social media and television get the first support dollars, but most people make a gift and move on. There are hundreds of charities that will show up and many will be reaching out for support. It also leaves many charities that rely on support from the local communities struggling to survive as their donors now become recipients of aid. There are many charities in New Orleans that never recovered from the lack of local support in that city.
I’ve already heard from charities we work with that they are worried it will affect their year-end gifts. Money will be diverted to Houston and donors always have a choice of where they give. This is why stewardship of donors is so important. When storms arise (and it can be a financial storm like the Great Recession) your “family” stays with you, and those are the people and organizations you rely on so, make stewardship part of your plan if it isn’t already.
It breaks our hearts to see the suffering in Houston. We pray for those impacted and for all those you don’t see on television. Families will come to support the displaced as they did with Katrina and people will begin to rebuild their lives. Be mindful of this as you talk to donors in the coming months. Some donors will divert dollars but if you have stayed close and connected, they will do what often happens — they will continue to give to you but will not give to the charities who failed to say thank you or reached out during the year.
“What you get by achieving your goals is not
as important as what you become by achieving your goals.”
- Zig Ziglar
Written by: Paul D’Alessandro