Online all the time

By Todd Cohen

With the flood of online giving unleashed by the South Asia tsunami last December, the web finally won broad acceptance as a philanthropic tool.

But while donors showed they were willing to use that tool, many charities still are not equipped to use it.

Charities need to prepare themselves to deploy technology to market and handle online giving.

And they need to be prepared not only to raise money online in wake of rare catastrophic events like the tsunami or 9/11, but also to secure the resources they need on an ongoing basis to cope with the day-to-day struggle to address the silent and persisting disasters our communities face.

Soliciting money online is not likely to replace the hard and critical job of working face to face to build relationships with donors and keep them involved in the work of their organizations.

But technology can be a powerful tool to make that job more effective, and charities need to embrace and use it.

If they can integrate technology into the way they run their business, deliver services, communicate and raise money, charities can better serve and work with their donors, volunteers, clients and partners.

Todd Cohen is the Editor and Publisher of the Philanthropy Journal.

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