Your case statement/case for support is the key document of any fundraising campaign, specifically, fundraising initiatives such as capital campaigns or endowment campaigns. Your case statement should appeal to a wide range of your stakeholders. It should work for both external and internal audiences. Most important, your case statement should be as understandable to your organization's receptionist as it is to your wealthiest prospective donor. Your case statement should include your mission, vision and values statements, and should set out to clearly answer the who, what, and why of your fundraising efforts.
Your case statement serves as your source document for all of the materials that you may use throughout a campaign or even over an extended period. You can and should throw everything but the kitchen sink into your draft of the case statement. Afterward, you can and should shorten, polish, refine and excerpt at will. Every fundraising campaign has a case statement or case for support at its center. Your case statement sets out the argument for supporting your cause.
A case statement must have eight essential elements. These elements may not necessarily show up as separate items and they may overlap or even be repeated. However, they must be present. A draft value proposition statement will be created based upon the cumulative information gathered throughout the feasibility study. This statement will have multiple uses.
Best Practice elements are:
- The title.It develops the theme and the tone for your case statement. Its job is to get the reader to turn to the page and begin reading.
- Grabbing the reader.This happens in the first few paragraphs. Often, a compelling quote in the early part of the case works wonders.
- The irrefutable case.Here is where you document the need and the urgency.
- Your unique position. This describes how your organization is positioned to meet the need head on. It must burn itself into the minds and hearts of the readers.
- Waving your flag.Here you describe the history of your organization, its mission and its history.
- Reinforcing the urgency.This reminds the reader of how pressing the need is and how it must be dealt with immediately.
- Making it happen.This describes what will be required financially to relieve the need.
- The benediction.This provides the closing and final blessing to the program/campaign. The theme is employed again for emphasis.
The Hodge Group creative team will work with your organization to create an effective case statement for your fundraising needs. (Visit our Case Development page for sample case statements)