2018-2019 Annual Giving Cohort (for YMCAs)

April 25, 2018



Written By: DBD Team

We believe in a comprehensive, year-round approach to annual giving that engages donors at all levels. The cohort is an innovative, focused effort to expand your donor base and increase engagement with donors.


Major Gifts  Major gifts ($2500+) are the key driver in growing annual giving. This donor-centered strategy focuses on deepening the on-going relationship between the YMCA and donors. Staff and a few key volunteers pursue year-round stewardship and engagement plans customized to top donors.

“Recently, I met with a couple who have been donors for several years. Over lunch, we played the “card game” and learned the wife has a strong interest in youth literacy. Later, we met with program staff to talk about what the Y does to promote youth reading. At the end of the appointment, she wrote a $3,000 check, doubling her gift from 2016. More importantly, we secured a very high quality donor/volunteer who is passionate and commited to this program at our Y.”

YMCA of Greater Charlotte, 2017-2018 Cohort


Direct Response  – As a foundation to annual giving, direct response strategies, including direct mail, social media and email, are an effective way to acquire and retain donors. Direct response takes place throughout the year, following natural cycles of giving.

“Just got a $1000 gift from a lapsed donor. The gift is exciting but even better is the note she sent, asking for acknowledgement letters to be sent to a list of friends in whose names she was making the gift. Several of them are capital prospects with whom we didn’t have a strong connection. This particular donor has a wonderful Y story but when her local Y closed, the connection changed. Very helpful opportunity to reconnect, steward, involve and make a difference!”

YMCA of Coastal Georgia 2017-2018 Cohort


These efforts combined with your existing “annual campaign” will help you reach more donors in ways that will get their attention and expand their understanding of the Y. Supporting all of this are best practices proven to reduce donor turnover, upgrade gifts, and help you and your volunteers focus your efforts where they’ll have the most impact.

Click here to apply.

All applications due by June 15. The final cohort will be announced by July 9. To learn more, download the flyer or contact us.

Want to learn more? Listen to what current cohort members have to say:

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