by Bill Dillon
Raising support or the dread of it should never keep you from pursuing a ministry or entering the mission field. Support raising can be a positive experience once you learn some basic skills and develop a strategy.
William Dillon Founder and Executive Director of Inner City Impact in Chicago has written a book for Moody Press entitled People Raising: A Practical Guide to Raising Support. http://www.peopleraising.com/tools.cfm#book
The book now in a 10th printing is an extremely practical guide to help you get beyond generating a donor list to building a ministry team with an eternal mission. His goal is to teach you how to raise financial and prayer support with as little effort as possible and in as short a time as possible.
Raising support for your mission or organization shouldn't cause the anxiety that it usually does. This breakthrough manual provides a nuts-and-bolts guide to raising support.
Drawing from the most successful approaches and proven wisdom of the best ministries, People Raising replaces the horror stories of "deputation" with a vision of success. Along the way it tackles issues such as:
* Beating the number one enemy of support raising
* Why strategy doesn't negate faith but is a means of it
* The "George Mueller" approach - not for everyone
* A practical 12-step nuts-and-bolts plan
Support raising isn't begging. It's biblical. It's learning how to share your vision and draw others into ministry. You're not just developing a "donor list" but a ministry team with an eternally crucial mission. Here's your blueprint to make it happen. The book covers the following:
Cultivating a Positive Attitude Toward Support Raising
Why Is Support Necessary?
Is Support Raising Biblical?
To Ask or Not to Ask
What's Your Philosophy of Support Raising?
The #1 Enemy of Support Raising
Support Raising Is a Ministry
Cultivating the Necessary Skills for Support Raising
Step 1: Begin with My Home Church
You always want to sit down with your pastor and share your vision and look for ways the church can be a part of your support team. Four goals are laid out for you to accomplish as you meet with him.
Step 2: Determine Who I Go to for Support
Each of us has a number of different people that the Lord has brought across our path. A handy checklist is provided to help you think through those who could be challenged to join you in your mission enterprise.
Step 3: Record and Catalog Prospects
Now that your list is coming together it is important that you recognize that some have greater potential to invest in your ministry than others. Itís a simple fact that is often ignored. To streamline your approach it is very wise to identify those who you would consider to be high priority, medium and then low priority. This principle alone could cut the time it will take you to raise support. In People Raising we look at each person and how they can contribute as opposed to the mass approach.
Step 4: Mail the First Prayer Letter
This becomes your announcement to all your friends and relatives that you are embarking on this missionary enterprise. Instruction is given as to how to maximize this initial mailing.
Step 5: Make Appointments
In People Raising we suggest being as personable as possible and for those close by sitting down and sharing your ministry is the key. People Raising will walk you through pointers on how to set up appointments by phone and guide you in how to handle objections.
Step 6: Conduct the Visit
Many questions run through your mind as you prepare to sit down and challenge people to be a part of your team. What do you say? What questions might they ask? How much should I ask for? Beyond the book People Raising is a 6-hour video training program that has role-playing and allows you to see how to ask for needed funds. For more information check out http://www.peopleraising.com/tools.cfm#video
Step 7: Track Support
Effective on going support needs to be tracked. Check out the People Raising tracking program http://www.peopleraising.com/tools.cfm#tracking
Step 8: Say "Thank You"
Far to often we think our job is complete once a person agrees to provide financial support but in fact that is just the beginning. We are talking about people, real people that need to be thanked. At People Raising we have this to say about thanking peopleÖ
Say thank you
Say thank you immediately
Say thank you immediately in writing
Step 9: Conduct a Letter/Phone Strategy
There will be those who you will not be able to sit down with personally. My advice, send a letter followed by a phone call. I think you would agree that 2-step approach is far better than simply a letter.
Step 10: Expand My Contacts
Most individuals raising financial support sooner or later run out of contacts. What do you do then? You need some advocates who can help expand your contacts. You might get a hold of our 6 hour audio program and learn just how to effectively expand your contacts, They can be ordered right off our web site http://www.peopleraising.com/tools.cfm#audio
Step 12: Cultivate Support
Our goal in People Raising is not only to help you get support but help you keep support. The key is ongoing cultivation of your donors. Each month People Raising provides a FREE e-mail newsletter, which provides fund raising advice that will help, you get and keep your support. You can join by going to http://www.peopleraising.com/email.cfm
Step 13: Resolicit for Support
As you build support long range you might not realize it but most of your supporters need to be challenged to give even more. You see, things change with people and that person that began with an initial gift of $50 a month now might have been promoted in his job, his kids are through college and now he very likely is a candidate to support you at $240 a month.
It is possible to take the dread out of support raising. In essence you already are in ministry as you meet with the Lordís people and encourage them to be a part in bringing the gospel to the world.
For further information on People Raising visit http://www.peopleraising.com
William P Dillon
2251 Pine Street
Des Plaines, IL 60018
877-611-PEOPLE (toll free)
Materials available on the website:
255 Page Text book: People Raising: A Practical Guide To Raising Support by Moody Press http://www.peopleraising.com/tools.cfm#book
6 Hour People Raising Video Kit
6 Hour People Raising Audio Kit
Short Term Support Manual http://www.peopleraising.com/tools.cfm#stm
People Raising Conferences http://www.peopleraising.com/conferences.cfm
To sign up for the FREE People Raising Monthly E-Mail Newsletter go to
William P. Dillon has been "People Raising" for more than three decades and deeply desires to see more join him in fulfilling the Great Commission. A graduate of Moody Bible Institute and Murray State University he is the founder and executive director of Inner City Impact.