CRC Watersheds Association

Development Planning, Corporate Donor Cultivation

The Challenge

The organization’s board of directors set itself a six-figure, short-term fundraising goal to establish enough revenue to hire an executive director. The goal was to bring three years of full-time pay and benefits in-house prior to launching an executive director search. The highly active volunteer board believed this could be achieved through a combination of major donor prospects and corporate volunteers and donations. Yet, they did not believe they had the right messaging or perhaps even the right current donors to achieve their substantial goal. 

Strategic Solution

Dunleavy & Associates assisted CRC Watersheds Association’s board in identifying the right message and gaining comfort in presenting a compelling pitch to high net worth individuals. Armed with a clean drinking water call to action, we then set about identifying prospective corporate donors through a national search. We looked for a strong track record or professed interest in natural resource preservation or participation in volunteer projects such as tree planting and creek clean up projects. Next, we completed a wealth screening of the top 25 percent of current donors and identified prospective corporate champions from that pool. The goal was to inspire existing supporters to become corporate champions within their firm. We also identified and began cultivating new corporate prospects on behalf of the organization. 

The Results

CRC Watersheds Association achieved half of its fundraising goal within six weeks with the new messaging. They have also begun securing interest and in-person meetings with key stakeholders from prospective corporate donor organizations. We believe that CRC Watersheds is well on its to way to launching a fiscally responsible executive director search and that the corporate donor connections will continue to multiply and expand as the first results and happy images of employee team-building and volunteer projects are shared broadly in Southeastern Pennsylvania. 

About the CRC Watersheds Association

CRC exists to directly address the fact that 95% of our area streams are categorized as impaired by the State of Pennsylvania, and it is these same streams that are the basis of our drinking water supply, our local biodiversity, and our areas for recreation and enjoyment.