Institute of Fundraising National Convention – Day 1

This is the first of three blogs from the Institute of Fundraising National Convention, where I’m blogging from along with Kirsty Marrins from JustGiving and Lisa Clavering from Breakthrough Breast Cancer

We started off with the plenary of the title of the IOF’s theme of late, Proud to be a Fundraiser (a hugely important movement if you ask me, given how much attack the sector has been under of late).

The infamous Alan Clayton of Clayton Burnett had everyone on their feet within a few minutes of taking to the stage, cheering their pride at simply being a fundraiser. He preached whole organisation fundraising, where support needs to come from your own colleagues, not just outside.

Alan also read out Jack’s story, an incredibly moving case study from Clare House. There were more than a few tears shed during this bit. There really is nothing more powerful the stories of those you help are.

First session: Culture eats strategy for breakfast. Yum. I’m a big believer in this approach, and Jacqueline Spicer of KCL agreed. Jacqueline talked a lot about aligning fundraising strategy with organisational strategy, but crucially, going out and getting started anyway if there isn’t one to align to. I particularly enjoyed the hypothetical question of getting £1 million funding tomorrow for a cause not aligned with our current mission.

The Good Agency ask the question on everyone's lips

The Good Agency ask the question on everyone’s lips

Then a great session from the Good Agency, on social media fundraising campaigns. A delightfully logical session, breaking down the types of fundraising campaigns a charity could run on social media. A great, simple answer to the question of how you can make social media a worthwhile activity.

This is actually my first National Convention. What struck me most was the mood of camaraderie. Not that it’s surprising. But it’s definitely a treat to see staff from different charities who are at least in theory competing for funding coming together in an upbeat mood, ready to learn together.

Finally, I caught up with Sally Falvey from JustGiving at the Expo – here’s her talking about JustGiving’s presence at National Convention.

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