What Is A Charity? How It Is Related To Crowdfunding


November 21, 2018

A charity or a charitable organisation is a type of business that fits within the non-profit organisation category. In general, they are called foundation or charity that can be run publicly or privately. Charities can focus on education, animals, religion, old-age or other public interest activities that are philanthropic in nature. The legal definition of what constitutes a charitable organisation may vary according to its country of origin. Therefore, tax implications also vary from country to country.

Crowdfunding is a global phenomenon where a project or a venture is funded by raising many small amounts of money from a large pool of people, typically through online platforms. Crowdfunding is a form of alternative finance. Online form of crowdfunding started in the West. However, the concept of crowdfunding is not new at all. Charity fundraising in India through crowdfunding existed before the online crowdfunding became popular.

Crowdfunding in India, in general has undoubtedly become an indispensable part of modern fundraising. Non-profits have been using crowdfunding for longer than you realise. In 1949, actor and comedian Milton Berle hosted the very first telethon for the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation. He raised a little over $100,000 in only 16 hours. This is probably the earliest example of a public non-profit crowdfunding.

Pooling of money from crowd is a tried and tested means of successful fundraising for non-profits. However, we can safely say that the internet has wildly changed the way we can leverage crowdfunding for non-profit organisations.

The practice itself has evolved into a stronger version of its offline self. Online crowdfunding is nothing but manifestation of otherwise slow and difficult task of raising capital. Non-profit crowdfunding is just an extension of an established fundraising model.

In order to raise funds successfully for a charity, you need to take certain steps.

  • One of the main tasks is to find the right set of crowds for your cause. You need to keep in mind that supporting a cause is a very personal decision. It might not be as impulsive as buying a product that looks cool and fancy. If you can successfully identify the type of people you want to engage with, the chance of receiving donations increase.
  • You must choose a platform that matches your needs.
  • Engage with your supporters. It is very important for you to create a bond with your supporters. Keep them updated about your campaign via email. Invest time into creating personalised messages for you donors and thank them profusely. This will get you a goodwill which can have a positive impact in future.
  • Video content is the most shared content online. Create a video explaining who you are and what you need. Video is the best way to reach out to the potential donor about your cause and a relatively interesting way of explaining your mission.
  • Success of fundraising lies within its strategies and marketing. Fundraising success is made in the weeks before you launch when you’re doing all of your due diligences. Prepare your emails and campaign materials weeks before the launch so that all you have to do is copy/paste when the time comes.