A number of my posts this month are focused on working in the nonprofit field. I always find it interesting what brings people to the nonprofit industry. I thought it would be fun highlight someone newer to fundraising and a seasoned professional. Today, I’m interviewing someone newer to fundraising, Cara Rudd, from Olive Crest. Thanks, Cara.- Jason
What motivates you to continue to do the good work you do?
Seeing our foster families who invest selflessly into the foster children they are taking care of and witnessing the foster child’s growth and ability to grow up to be a competent citizen and give back to the community. Then I love taking those stories and sharing them with donors; the donor is transformed and I am encouraged to continue breaking the cycle of abuse by sharing the uplifting stories about Olive Crest in an effort to transform even more lives.
What has attributed to your success as a fundraiser?
I’ve grown up in a family who’s always been in debt and has never been financially free to invest in the things most families desire to invest in. Therefore, I had to learn to “fundraise” in order to be involved in the activities I wanted to be. College was a biggie. My parent’s paid my $300 housing deposit, but I was responsible for coming up with the annual $33,000 in tuition, room and board. I took the initiative to apply for scholarships and advocate for myself. I’m proud to say I finished my undergraduate without any loans/debt.
Any tips and advice for new fundraisers.
Always remember why you’re there. For me, I live for the kids and the amazing foster parent’s I get to work with. When I get caught up in not getting the amount I asked a donor for or loosing grant money to another organization, I have wasted my energy and time when I could have been looking for another opportunity to help a child. The worst thing you can do is turn inward and closed and loose your focus. Keep your eye’s and heart on the mission of your organization so you can keep that passion alive.