“I cannot let that woman die…” That was the opening line of an end of year appeal I helped a church craft a few years ago. It was a captivating opening for a compelling end of year offering for an incredible need. The success of the offering was in how we crafted the appeal.
In this blog I want to talk to you about how to set the stage for a successful end of year appeal. The following will give you key points for working on the message of your end of year appeal.
Let’s start now to assure a successful end of year appeal for your church. A good end of year strategy starts in November. So now is the time to begin your planning. Here are some keys to think about as you work on your appeal or “ask.” Follow these steps to set up your end of year appeal…
- Every appeal or “ask” needs a driver. A driver is the vision that drives me to my wallet to give.
- Make the “ask” about fulfilling a vision not hitting a number. What is the vision behind your end of year appeal? I will talk more about this in the pages that follow and help you build out a compelling vision
- The basic elements of an “ask” are…
Crisis – I want my donors to know about…
Need – We can help by…
Ask – Your gift NOW will help us meet this need!
A real life illustration of the basic elements in action. I opened the blog with the sentence, “I cannot let that woman die. That came about as a pastor called me a few years ago asking for help on an end of year appeal. He wanted to take up an offering to give to a need in Africa.
Let’s start first with the crisis this pastor saw. Women in Africa were giving birth on dirt floors. This unsanitary process was causing deaths in women and children. Something needed to be done and a mission organization had stepped in to help resolve the crisis. What “crisis” can your church address?
The need was for better birthing facilities. Birthing centers were being built with concrete floors that provided a cleaner and thus healthier experience for both mother and baby. Those facilities cost money and the mission organization was reaching out asking churches for financial support so that they could build several new centers. What need can your church meet?
The “ask” was then to give money so that my friends church could fund a new facility to meet this crisis and need. The following letter was sent to all members…
“I cannot let that woman die.”…These were the recent words of Zambian medical missionary, Sal Marini, to his wife after receiving a call at 3 a.m. from a woman who had just given birth to a baby, but was unable to deliver the afterbirth. In the bush of Zambia, the process of childbirth is a life and death experience in ways that many of us could never imagine. Often there is no doctor nor sanitary facilities. In fact, just this afternoon, I was told, “Jason, it is not uncommon for these women to give birth to children on a dirt floor or the back of the pickup truck.”
As a church family, we must do something about this. For years, we have had an ongoing partnership with the Sons of Thunder medical clinic in Zambia. Currently, this organization desperately needs to complete the construction of a maternity center for these children. All we need to raise for the completion of this maternity center is $15,000. For the same price that it costs to deliver a single child in the United States, we can build a multi-bed facility that would preserve the lives of the upwards of 58 mothers per month who travel as far as 100 miles to deliver children at this clinic.
The letter then laid out how to give to support this great cause. I am happy to announce that over $15K was raised and given to support this great cause!
Any church no matter what the size can benefit from end of year giving! The above illustration is of a church with an attendance of around 200. If they can do it you can to! Start crafting a compelling vision for your end of year offering.
Mark Brooks – The Stewardship Coach
- Key strategies on how to make your end of year appeal the best it has ever been.
- Vision worksheet to help you craft the best message possible.
- Detailed week by week, step by step directions from November to December 31st.
- Sample letters, emails, inserts and other ideas.
- Weekly offering talks to set the stage for a successful offering.
Get your copy today at 2 Minute Drill