TEA BREAK WITH

ELLES VAN ARK

What kicks you off on Monday morning?

A double coffee. Talking with colleagues also kicks me off but if I am really busy, I like to start working from home, where I can focus better.

What inspires you in fundraising?

What inspires me are the projects we do in developing countries. The people who we work with are really motivated to bring change to their countries. The beneficiaries of our projects live in difficult circumstances and this is the group I am inspired by. I really need to know that what we do has an impact on people’s lives, directly or indirectly.

As a fundraiser, you often have deadlines and have to work long hours, but knowing that your project can really change people’s lives is something that helps me do that bit of extra work.

As a fundraiser, you often have deadlines and have to work long hours, but knowing that your project can really change people’s lives is something that helps me do that bit of extra work.

I love working towards a concrete result and with a certain time frame. I enjoy working in an energetic environment and I like doing both – working behind my desk but also talking to people about the projects. This diversity of fundraiser’s work, being outside as well as inside, is what I like about it.

Do you foresee any fundraising trends?

I think we will work in a more sustainable way. Sustainability of projects is more and more important, we need to be sure that the project can continue by itself after its official end. Donors are no longer looking for non-sustainable projects. It is something I am always worried about when I’m writing a project, making sure it will be standing on its own feet after the lifespan of the project.

At the same time, I think we will see more mixed projects, mixes between grant income and financial resources from companies, which I find very interesting.

Sustainability of projects is more and more important, we need to be sure that the project can continue by itself after its official end.

Is there an organization that inspires you in fundraising?

An organization that is working towards a good cause and doing it in a different way is Tony’s Chocolonely. It’s a very inspiring organization that has the goal to end child labor in the cocoa sector, but they are doing it in a very interesting way. I like the way they combine business with a good cause, and their use of marketing in achieving their goal.

They are also being honest about the difficulties they have in achieving their goals. Donors are interested in partnerships where organizations don’t hide their problems. They are willing to assist the grantee, want to think along in bringing solutions. Just as it should be in true partnerships.

What is the most important quality of a good fundraiser?

Being stress-resistant and a being good networker. These are the two qualities that you need to be able to combine. Why you need to be stress-resistant is clear. Being able to build partnerships is necessary because you can’t do fundraising alone, you need different people with specific knowledge to be successful. That is also a mistake that I sometimes make – I want to do too many things by myself. But you really need others, you need to be able to motivate them to work with you, to share their knowledge, commitment and enthusiasm.

Being stress-resistant and a being good networker.

Elles van Ark

Fundraising Manager at CNV Internationaal

About the series

Have you ever wondered whether you had more in common with your peers than just your passion for making a difference? Through informal interviews, we explore the ultimate drives of fundraising professionals, donors and association’s leaders, as well as their secrets for successful Mondays and their insights about the NGO and fundraising sector. Grab a cup and read on!

Have also a tea break with

+ Elise Kant

+ Saskia van der Kooy

Minke van Rees

+ Juliet MacDowell

+ Anisa Mehdi (coming soon)

+ Bart Romijn (coming soon)

+ Matthew Costello (coming soon)

 

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