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Library Case Study
Capital Campaign Readiness
Capital Campaigns are usually
the most difficult and time consuming projects undertaken by organizations.
How do you know when your library is ready for a capital campaign? Here are
questions your organization should be asking to determine readiness for a capital
1. Do you have a strategic long-range plan for your organization? You must have a clear image of your organization and a plan for its growth and improvement so it can better fulfill its purpose.
2. Are key participants, like the board, executive director, key volunteers, friends and staff, committed to investing time and energyneeded for a capital campaign?
3. Does your organization have a positive image in the community?
4. Do you have a compelling case statement? A case statement should be developed by the staff and the board. All should agree that the fulfillment of the case statement is instrumental in fulfilling the organizations mission.
5. Do you have enough staff to handle campaign activities or will you need external professional counsel?
6. Do you have a current development/fundraising plan? The most productive fundraising plans/programs characteristically include four key elements:
-an annual giving program
-a planned giving program
-a major gifts program
-a prospect research program
7. Do you have a strong public relations effort to complement your fundraising plan?
8. Do you have a gift policy? Sample gift policies are available on the MHLS Sample Policy Page.
9. Do you have a plan for collection and pledge redemption?
10. Are resources available to provide annual support for a completed capital project (ex.: increased maintenance costs, heating oil, staff)?
Hiring a fundraising consultant can be a hard decision for a board. Consultants can aid your campaign in a variety of ways: conduct a feasibility study; help you create realistic plans and timetables; train board members and volunteers in the art of solicitation and; provide an outside perspective on the campaign. MHLS has provided tips on hiring and a list of fundraising consultants that have worked with organizations in the area.
One of the most important aspects of your campaign is your donor tracking and response. Thank you notes should be sent out within 48 hours of a gift in a capital campaign.
Need Assistance? Contact Rebekkah Smith Aldrich, MHLS Coordinator for Library Sustainability: firstname.lastname@example.org or x239
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