The Fond du Lac Family YMCA was ready to grow to keep up with its changing community. Building on their strong relationship with the Fond du Lac Boys & Girls Club, the YMCA was ready to embark on an ambitious $12 million capital campaign.
“We knew we only had one shot in the community to do this and we wanted to do it right,” explains Greg Giles, President and CEO. “This is a big campaign for our community and neither our staff nor our volunteers had a lot of experience in fund-raising.”
He continues, “Bruce and the whole team have really walked with us each step of the way.” Through education, strategic project work and emphasizing “interest-raising” before “fund-raising,” the Fond du Lac Family YMCA has raised over $8 million toward its $12 million goal at the half-way point in the campaign.*
One of the more unique aspects of this interest development is the “Imagine Room.” To help the community understand the impact a new YMCA/Boys & Girls Club could have, they have to see and feel it. The Imagine Room, with its comfortable seating, vivid colors and photographs and big-screen TV starts the conversation. There, staff and volunteers can paint the vision of the new facility. They show the campaign video which includes interviews with members, images from similar facilities in other parts of the state and an outline of all the changes.
“The space allows for candid, casual conversations with potential donors and community stakeholders. And, across the board, the reaction has been ‘Wow!’,” concludes Greg.
*Want to learn more – including how the Fond du Lac Family Y achieved its goal in the middle of an economic downturn? Listen to our podcast of a conversation between Greg Giles and Bruce Berglund, or check out this video about their project.