Sunday, November 20, 2016

Shift in Focus: Fundraising to Recruitment

Fundraising is an important function of any non-profit, but the Grand Comics Database (GCD) Board of Directors needs to shift their focus from fundraising to recruitment. We have sufficient funds and steady revenue stream to start new projects, but with very few exceptions, we do not have the volunteers to guide long-term efforts from approval to implementation. Our financial picture is solid thanks to Jochen and Ralf for setting up our ad revenue stream. According the the Treasurer’s 3rd Quarter Report for 2016, the GCD has $15,241.44 in its coffers. We have enjoyed a 9% quarterly growth due in large part to our ad revenue. Here is a snapshot to give you an idea of how our financial picture looks for the first three quarters in 2016: Ad Revenue: $4,4825.27 Donations: $1,080.00 Overhead: $1,737.13 As you can see, donations remain an important part of our budget. It covers nearly two thirds of our expenses leaving most of the ad revenue (86%) available to improve the GCD. We’ve accumulated enough to start new projects. Our challenge is recruiting volunteers to effectively lead new projects. Outside of infrastructure upgrades (thank you Andres), we’ve only had two projects with dedicated volunteer project managers. Mike chaired the conventions committee in 2014 which used $2,500 for an outreach project that saw members share their stories and experiences at 27 conventions and shows across North America and Europe. Don’s work to develop the creator tables and integrate Jerry Bails’s Who’s Who database provides a much better example of the persistence a dedicated project manager provides the GCD. He took the lead in finding and working with a vendor to deliver software (at $4,837.64) to make this long time project a reality. Don continues to spearhead the effort to implement this code. It is no small task and requires a great deal of commitment. The project manager doesn’t do it alone. Our membership has proven time and again the willingness to contribute. Over 25 people participated in the 2014 convention project, and Don has received assistance from several volunteers for his project. The GCD has an ambitious goal with plenty projects on the books. Fundraising is going well. We’ve increased our ad revenue and donations; we are exploring other non-profit giving opportunities through Guidestar, and we will soon have two online stores through Red Bubble and Land’s End. Our volunteers are passionate and generous. They have wide range of talents and skills, and they’ve demonstrated a willingness to lend a hand. We have the money and people, so I encourage the Board focus on ways to recruits a few more long-term volunteers to turn our great ideas into concrete results.