BLOOM has grown so incredibly quickly by the grace of God and the support of all of you. When I joined the Board of Directors late in 2017 there wasn’t a lot to oversee. As word of our mission quickly spread, we started receiving donations a little at a time and sent out enthusiastic thank you notes and tax receipts. As our social media campaigns built, so did our donor base.
Our donors all over the world were looking for ways to donate and PayPal was an obvious choice. We partnered with Facebook and Network for Good and were able to raise even more money for our PlayGardens. Soon donations started coming in from friends of BLOOM who didn’t know any of us personally. It’s a great position to be in, but it is also one that keeps a treasurer up at night.
We have processes in place to account for all our funds and donors, but we wanted something more robust. We were hand writing thank you letters and generating tax receipts somewhat manually initially. We needed a better system, but we also wanted to be efficient in the use of our funds. We spent a considerable amount of time exploring donor databases, accounting software, and capabilities of our existing software. Simultaneously we were holding fundraisers, developing strategic partnerships, and of course building PlayGardens!
We raised $20,639.00 in the three months of 2017 that our organization operated. As we close out the second quarter of 2018 we have raised over $50,000 (approximately $15,000 of that was during our Ramadan campaign). We have one completed project and are looking forward to the implementation of two more in 2018. It all must be accounted for, vendors need to get paid, donors must be acknowledged, and future projects budgeted for. Our Board held a day long planning meeting over Ramadan to ensure that our processes are second to none. We have a technology meeting scheduled in July to discuss the integration of all our systems. We are working with an organization called TechSoup to get deeply discounted rates on things like Quickbooks and other software that our organization uses. In short, we are finding ways to have a streamlined, transparent and effective non-profit while retaining as much of our funds as possible for our PlayGardens.
We have put significant information up on our Guidestar profile and are so proud to have moved up from a Bronze star to a Gold star in seven short months. Our Form 990 (tax return) will be on the Guidestar website as soon as it is processed by the IRS.
Having a tangible result so early on is heartwarming and motivating. I encourage you to all watch our time lapse video of the building of the Le Nid playground if you have not already done so (LINK). As always our goal is to maximize the impact of your donations to the children living in Moroccan orphanages, thank you for joining us on this journey.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me directly if you have any questions about your donation. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With best regards,
S. Mona Reza, JD LLM
Treasurer, BLOOM Charity, NFP