“What we’re doing here at The Salvation Army that is different from many others is staying open!”
Major Roy Williams, the Area Commander in Louisville, said this to me as the COVID-19 pandemic was accelerating two weeks ago. He also added, “We are putting ourselves at risk because we believe in our mission. We are serving meals, sheltering people, and praying for others. We will keep doing this, and increase this work, for as long as we have to.” This is the message your communities need, and one your donors need to hear.
I wanted to briefly update you all about our work at TrueSense Marketing and partnership with The Salvation Army. As the days and weeks unfold before us, there will be even greater need, anxiety, and opportunity. These times require all of us to lean in on the lives of those most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and growing economic challenges.
Here Are 6 Ways We’ll See This Through, Together:
- We are here, and are fundraising for you. Many messages are changing and/or being modified, but donors are very responsive in times of crisis, and we need to keep them updated on the work being done, no matter how fluid and changing. Our account teams are already in daily communication with your development staff, making sure your messages are being communicated.
- We are launching a national #GiveFromHomeDay on April 21, 2020. We are calling attention to the need that ALL nonprofits have during this time, through a special awareness campaign called #GiveFromHomeDay — whereby digital assets will be made available to charities across the nation.
- We are open for business. At this time, our work is not being impacted by supply-chain challenges. Our entire staff has been working from home for two weeks now, and the MSP printing plant remains open. Direct mail (and certainly digital) campaigns are moving forward, with relevant expediency.
- There is no way to predict the impact of these events on fundraising, either in the short-term or long-term. If the 2008 recession taught us anything, it’s that we can expect response rates and average gifts to suffer. The best course is to remind your donors of the work that you’re doing — whether that is ongoing service, new crisis-related service, or both — and to stay the course with fundraising.
- This is The Salvation Army’s time to serve! Donors remember the impact on lives, and will always respond to swift, relevant, and gracious care. Donors are partners in your mission, and they appreciate engagement at all levels.
- We are praying for you! Our leadership matters in these days, and our ability to calmly guide with intention and grace can make all the difference to our staff and communities. If there are ways that we can pray more specifically for you, please let me know.
I will continue to send brief updates as events warrant, and I am also available to talk through anything at any time. Please call my cell phone at 412-974-9750 or email me if I can be of any additional service.
Thank you for your work!
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