Living Donor Coordinator: This was the job title of the person who was responsible for managing my process as a living kidney donor – for the year leading up to the operation, the surgery, and the post-surgery experience. (Here’s my post announcing my kidney surgery. Here’s what I wrote post-surgery.)
The living donor coordinator guided me through the various medical tests necessary for donation approval. This medical professional, also, was responsible for helping me make an informed decision. I could ask her questions about any aspect of living kidney donation. I credit my living donor coordinator when discussing what a positive experience I had with Clarian Transplant.
So, what does this have to do with fundraising?
Unfortunately, there are many misconceptions about fundraisers. We may be seen as beggers. We may be perceived as money-crazed or pushy. To combat these stereotypes, I encourage all fundraisers to embody the essence of a Living Donor Coordinator. Answer these questions to see if you live up to the job title (and the great experience I had with my living donor coordinator at Clarian Transplant.)
- Are you helping donors make an informed decision? Provide accurate, up-to-date information about your program. My living donor coordinator could answer every question I had!
- Are you easy to get a hold of? Be available by email, phone, or mail. Respond when you say you will. My living donor coordinator was consistent and reliable!
- Are you focused on the people – not the tasks? Be sensitive to individual’s needs and preferences. My living donor coordinator always treated me like a person – not just a line-item on her to-do list!
- Are you there for the whole process? Fundraising is more than just solicitation – pay attention to identification, cultivation, and stewardship tasks. My living donor coordinator was involved beginning to end!
- Are you involving your donors in your organization’s programs and clients – to their comfort level? Consider tours, meeting clients, requesting ideas/feedback, etc. My living donor coordinator facilitated an opportunity to meet the recipient of my kidney and the entire kidney chain but only because I wanted those experiences!
How else can a fundraiser act like a Living Donor Coordinator? Please leave a comment with your idea!