The Spirituality of Fundraising

For many Americans, the notion of spirituality comprises one's most cherished personal beliefs and cuts to the core of who that person is and what he or she values. Because it is so central to many people's identities, its expression varies widely from person to person. As diverse as spiritual and religious views are among people, few expect to hear the word “fundraising” in any context related to one's spiritual expression. However, fundraising can provide opportunities for growth and expression in ways many people do not immediately recognize.

Giving is a Universal Gesture of Compassion

Raising money allows you to offer tangible support to people in need. Kind words and a patient ear can do a lot for people undergoing hardship, but when a family is struggling to pay a medical bill or recently lost a home, raising money to help is an act compassion that also reflects your spiritual identity, whatever that may be.

Five Great Ways to Incorporate Spirituality Into Fundraising

  1. Plan a Retreat

    Crowdfunding can be a great way to raise money for a special retreat with members of your group or organization. Retreats allow a community to come together and reflect on the shared values or concerns of its members. By temporarily leaving the chaos of everyday life, those retreating have a chance to evaluate their lifestyles and look for ways to find more meaning in their routines. Your campaign can help cover a cabin rental, transportation to a nearby wilderness area, or hiring an instructor to host an empowering workshop. Fundraising goals should reflect the length of the retreat, the number of participants, and the types of activities you plan to offer.

  2. Fundraise for Your Local Religious Community

    Raise funds to perform necessary repairs to your place of worship, cover its operating expenses, or expand its facilities. Other options include crowdfunding to cover the cost of educational seminars or conferences among leaders of your faith. By fundraising online, you simplify the donating process for supporters and make it easy to share news and updates. Some religious groups have used crowdfunding to support youth programs, while Seventh Day Adventists in Seale, Alabama, financed the building of a new church, and a group of Muslims in Lincoln, Nebraska, are raising money for a new mosque! Crowdfunding for your place of worship can be a gratifying spiritual experience.

  3. Fundraise for Programs That Promote the Emotional Well Being of Others

    One form of spiritual fundraising centers on providing resources that protect an individual's spiritual and emotional well-being, especially in a community where mental health resources may not be readily available. The organization Mental Health America, for example, works to connect people with affordable counseling and psychological services in their communities. And organizations such as the Bay Area's own Youth Spirit Artworks offers a jobs training program the aims to empower at-risk and homeless youth through art. Or you could crowdfund to benefit other organizations that promote spiritual well-being, such as those that offer free meditation classes, art therapy or mindfulness training.

  4. Form Connections While Fundraising

    Conducting a crowdfunding campaign often puts you in contact with new people, sometimes supporters from across the country or even the globe. It can involve working with people who are experiencing great hardship or those who know a lot about raising money for humanitarian causes. Some of these connections may wind up inspiring you and challenging your perspectives on a variety of topics. Use the opportunity to work with people who you may not have had a chance to meet otherwise, and be open to evaluating your own priorities or perceived limits as the campaign progresses.

  5. Find New Ways to Give

    The holidays and the end of the calendar year often comprise a period of heightened giving, both between loved ones and to charitable causes. And while this shift of focus can be incredibly gratifying for the giver, our community could benefit from steady, year-long giving as well. Promote your fundraiser as an opportunity for supporters to give back and celebrate giving in new ways! Challenge people to leave their comfort zones; those who make financial donations might consider volunteering their time, and those who typically volunteer at in-person events could consider taking on a larger role with online marketing. Encourage people to use your fundraiser as an opportunity to give back in new ways!

Get in the Spirit

Use your crowdfunding campaign as an opportunity to inspire people and give back to those in need. Share your inspiring experiences as often as possible. By using crowdfunding to fulfill your spiritual fundraising needs, you join a growing group of people who hope to use technology to do good! Check out our Fundraising Ideas page for more inspiration.