Donor ‘socialization’ may boost donations

Encouraging intense and engaging volunteer opportunities for donors can increase the value of some contributors’ donations and boost their involvement, a new study says.

In an analysis of Social Venture Partners’ members, who agree to donate at least $5,000 annually to a giving fund, donors say their increased involvement led to higher donations, says the study by the Center on Philanthropy and Public Policy at the University of Southern California.

About seven in 10 Social Venture Partners members say their giving and volunteering has increased since joining, with one in three saying its up by at least half, and the majority reporting at least a doubling in donations and volunteering.

Membership in the group, which provides training and collaboration opportunities, also affects how members give.

Almost nine in 10 report changing how they give, with members reporting they have become more strategic, results-oriented, collaborative and more engaged.

To increase “donor socialization,” the report recommends creating more experiential opportunities for learning and providing opportunities for peer-to-peer learning among donors.

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