Philanthropists and fundraisers meet to discuss better collaboration

Thomas Hughes-Hallett, chief executive of Marie Curie Cancer Care, says it's good to explore ways of improving the value of giving

Thomas Hughes-Hallett
Thomas Hughes-Hallett

About a dozen philanthropists and senior fundraisers met this week to discuss how they can work together more effectively.

The invitation-only meeting, convened by the Institute of Fundraising, was attended by directors of fundraising and high net-worth donors, although the names of the majority of those present have not been released.

The media was not invited, but a spokesman for the institute said the meeting was intended to begin a frank dialogue between the two groups about how they can collaborate better.

The spokesman said one of the main issues discussed was how fundraisers should approach philanthropists.

Philanthropists, he said, liked to be approached by senior staff and chief executives rather than junior fundraisers, as is often the case now.

"The meeting was about making sure more charities in the UK understand philanthropists – how they want to be involved and how to approach them," he said.

Peter Lewis, chief executive of the institute, chaired the meeting. He said it was an opportunity to build relationships and increase giving.

"We’ve felt for quite some time that philanthropists and fundraisers need to better understand each others’ point of view," said Lewis in a statement.

"There was a general feeling that there needs to be more and better asking from good causes. If philanthropists aren’t being engaged with, then why should they even consider giving?"

The institute will now develop an action plan explaining how charities should approach philanthropists. The discussions will also feed into the government’s giving summit, which is scheduled for May.

Thomas Hughes-Hallett, the chief executive of Marie Curie Cancer Care, who chaired the Philanthropy Review, said: "It is so good to see fundraisers and funders meeting together to explore how we can improve the value and impact of giving."

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