Why Fundraising Convention is the place to be for freelancers and consultants

: Sarah Eite

Sarah Eite explains why attending Fundraising Convention is so valuable to her, in her role as a fundraising consultant.

As a fundraising consultant, it’s critical to stay connected with the latest developments in our sector. I love heading to Fundraising Convention every year because it provides an opportunity to meet with kindred spirits (it’s the largest gathering of fundraisers in Europe!) and an unrivalled programme of inspiring content on everything from digital fundraising to events, community, philanthropy and more… all delivered by a fabulous mix of experts in our field. So, for freelancers, consultants and fundraisers alike, here are just a few of the reasons why I can’t wait for this year’s event.

We’re bringing a corporate perspective

We’ve secured some fantastic speakers from the corporate sector this year. I’ll be getting The inside scoop on how companies are approaching corporate responsibility in today’s environment from a panel of CR practitioners, you can find out what Morrisons, Societé Generalé and YBS Group think of some ‘Perfect Pitches’, plus how Helly Hansen won its partnership with the RNLI.

The opportunities for shared learning are endless

Whether you work in trusts, individual giving, philanthropy, or any other area, our work as fundraisers is underpinned by building great relationships with highly engaged supporters. You can learn a great deal by heading ‘off piste’ to a few sessions that are outside of your expert area. When it comes to engaging supporters, I’m predicting a high energy session on how to lose a supporter in 10 days (or not) and am keen to hear how Battersea Dogs & Cats Home is measuring and improving donor satisfaction. On the philanthropy side, I’m looking forward to some insights into how conversations with donors have transformed Oxfam’s philanthropy programme and the story behind how the MS Society has mobilised senior volunteers

We have some great digital stories to tell

Talking of mobilising supporters, lessons from the frontline of the resistance with Paul de Gregorio and the ACLU is a top pick for me. And whilst we’re thinking digital, I’d like to know more about how Pancreatic Cancer UK recruited 40,000 cold leads from Facebook… and what they did next!

We’re keen to discuss the challenges we’re facing in fundraising 

We know that there are challenges in the fundraising sector right now, and we don’t shy away from them. We have great teams of speakers lined up to share thoughts on tackling the sector’s diversity challenge as well as how we can drive change through developing future talent.

We think bigger picture

My final top picks are behavioural economics and the future of fundraising with the brilliant Bernard Ross, and I can’t wait to hear Alix Wooding share her fundraising confessions in 'I wish I hadn't done that' – a session not to be missed!

If you’re debating whether it’s worth investing in coming along to Fundraising Convention this year, my advice is to come along and check out some of these sessions, you won’t regret your decision. I hope to see you there! 

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