It was seven years ago that they first connected. That marked the start of a beautiful relationship that consisted of meaningful touch points, impact reports, tours of programs, solicitations, and meetings with leadership.

The frontline fundraiser would ask the donor twice a year for large gifts, and she increased her giving year over year, with her last gift being $300,000.

When the donor’s health began to decline in late 2020, the frontline fundraiser would call, email the donor, and stayed very connected. She even brought the donor groceries during the pandemic and would leave them on the doorstep.

Unfortunately, the donor passed away in the summer of last year.

Last month, the frontline fundraiser met with donor’s financial advisor, whom she had also developed a deep relationship with. During lunch, they were reminiscing and sharing stories about the donor and the impact the donor’s giving had had on the organization.

The advisor then stopped and handed the frontline fundraiser a folder with a letter addressed to her. As she read it, she began to weep as it shared how the frontline fundraiser had served the donor so well and how much the donor loved the organization and all the good that had been accomplished by the donor through their giving.

Then the frontline fundraiser read the part of the letter where the donor had included the organization in her will. It was for $28 million dollars! Truly a transformational gift. The financial advisor announced that the wire transfer would be going through in the following week.

It often takes a long time for a good and authentic relationship to result in transformational giving. Take time to be real, caring, loving, and kind with each of your caseload donors. That is what counts. The money will follow.