What’s in my Mailbox | This is what donor love looks like

January 21, 2015


How are nonprofit organizations using the power of direct mail to love their donors? Join us every Wednesday for What’s in my Mailbox.

In 2014, as part of my continuing ‘being a donor’ experiment, I made a number of monthly gifts. The response to one $10 gift was silence (read the article here).

But my $10 monthly gift to Brittany’s Hope Foundation has been met with grateful appreciation. And their recent thank you packet exemplifies donor love. When I opened the lumpy hand-addressed envelope, I was delighted by what I found inside:

 This thank you letter documenting my ten gifts in 2014 oozes donor love. Executive Director Mai-Lynn Abel Sahd ramps the donor love up a notch with her hand-written notation (click to read):


A colorful, hand-painted thank you from one of the children of Brittany’s Hope:


This terrific refrigerator magnet (brought tears):

BrittanysHopeMagnet 1

A charming fish purse, “hand-made by special needs young adults living at the vocational training center in Viet Nam:”


In the past, I’ve sponsored children with international organizations and haven’t received anywhere near the kind of personal attention I’ve received from Brittany’s Hope.  My last child sponsorship – $35 a month, with an agency with a staff numbering in the thousands – ended after nearly eight months of silence.  I received my original sponsorship packet, and then…nothing. Brittany’s Hope, an SDS member, is a small organization with a staff of four. Donor love doesn’t need to be expensive or contain the ‘right’ language…it just needs to be sincere and come from the heart.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Leah Eustace January 21, 2015 at 9:22 am

This just adds to my conviction that small organizations may be small, but they’re mighty. Large organizations can get so caught up in themselves that they lose sight of what really matters (donor love). I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve encouraged a greater emphasis on stewardship and cultivation at a large non-profit and they’ve responded with, “we just don’t have the capacity.” To that I say, PSHAW!

John Lepp January 21, 2015 at 9:35 am

Great example Pam! Time and time again, we see examples where the SMALL orgs can easily out class and out punch the larger ones. SMALL is MIGHTY! This is a steal-able idea! Thanks for sharing it!

Pamela Grow January 21, 2015 at 10:45 am

Thanks John! I agree. This piece is so very personal and speaks to the heart.

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