Thursday, November 27, 2008

The Reason I Didn't Accept the Award


A very cool thing happened to the Foundation I work for yesterday. At the AFP Greater Toronto Chapter Philanthropy Luncheon our organization was presented the award for Outstanding Small Organization for Excellence in Fundraising.

This is a really big deal for us because we are:

- small
- new
- under resourced (isn't everyone)
- experiencing extraordinary growth
- delivering fantastic resources to programs

- in the middle of an intensive strategic planning process

Here's the thing though, since this award was announced a few months ago people have been saying things like:

"Kimberley, congratulations on your award."

"Kimberley, well done!"

"Kimberley, you must feel so proud."

"Kimberley are you making a speech?"

Uuuuuh guys.....this isn't my award.

Perhaps it is time for a small reminder that we fundraisers are mere mortals. Hired hands to act as stewards for philanthropy. In The 11 Pillars of Fundraising Wisdom by Ken Burnett number 7 states:

"Be aware that people support nonprofits in spite of as much as because of fundraisers..."

You can read the entire document on SOFII. (I'm saving a blog about SOFII for after you have told all your friends about my blog and they start reading it, bit but Sean Triner has a great series already posted so check out his blog)

Excellence in fundraising is about so much more than increased revenue. There were 25 people with me yesterday at the luncheon. Our board, program delivery staff, admin support and those very first donors to the major giving program. This award belongs to them. This success is theirs.

That is why I didn't accept the award yesterday.

Just between us cheeks are a little sore from smiling so much.

Thank you for spending time here.


1 comment:

  1. I can't tell you how many people asked me about this.

    I told them "because it's not about her, it's about the organization and the work they do".

    And that's without having read your blog!