Coalitions Conference Call
Fundraising Tips for Coalitions
Please see the accompanying slide deckfor more detail on all these points.
Lisa has worked with coalitions for 18 years, including coalitions related to housing, lead, dental, and immunization. The Chicago Area Immunization Campaign (CAIC) is a project of the Illinois Maternal and Child Health Coalition, and is housed in their office which helps with overhead. When Lisa became director of CAIC 5 years ago, its budget was $200,000, which has since doubled. Funding comes from many sources, primary federal Section 317 funds, but also from the Chicago Department of Public Health, the Illinois Department of Public Health, Wells Fargo, CVS Pharmacy, GSK, Merck, Pfizer, and Novartis. CAIC did not take industry money at first, but Lisa came to realize that the anti-vaccine forces would be suspicious of them whether they took such support or not. She said that accepting this support has not caused them any more problems and has brought them more money.
1) Be project oriented: funders like measurable projects
Funders like to support something specific, not just your coalition. For example, CAIC created a project called Protect Our Infants from Pertussis which was framed with measurable objectives such as how many presentations would be given and the desired decrease in the rate of pertussis in the area. This was funded for $77,000 by GSK and CVS. CAIC then developed a related project called You're Not Done at Age One, which was initially about pertussis vaccination but then expanded to other vaccines when Pfizer (Prevnar) contributed to the funding.
2) Use immunization problems to your advantage.
Outbreaks of pertussis and influenza, unfortunate as they are, can nevertheless be used to get funding. When something is in the news, people are more likely to want to help solve the problem.
3) Develop relationships with local health departments so that you are their "go-to."
With CAIC, the Chicago Department of Health comes to them when they learn of federal funding opportunities that they can collaborate on.
4) Get to know national groups so you can take advantage of opportunities at a national level.
For example, CAIC hosted the National Conference on Immunization and Health Coalitions in Chicago in 2010. This turned into an ongoing funding opportunity, as CAIC became the fiscal agent for the group and receives $5,000/year in unrestricted money for this. CAIC has also collaborated with Every Child By Two on a billboard campaign and assisted CDC in setting up meetings in the Chicago area.
5) If you take pharmaceutical money, use all opportunities to get it.
Besides applying for grants from the national companies, think about how you can work with local representatives; e.g., to sponsor meetings (speakers, food, etc.)
6) Throw darts.
Take a chance! For example, although it seemed like a long shot, Lisa completed an online form for CVS Pharmacy and got $44,000 for a pertussis project. Talk to everybody–you never know what will work out.
7) Be open to all opportunities.
For example, Lisa was talking to her neighbor and he mentioned how he was in charge of awarding small local grants from Wells Fargo. She then applied and got support from Wells Fargo, not an organization she would have thought of as supporting health outreach.
8) Be willing to share.
Part of a pie is better than none. Don't go up against local competitors–it doesn't look good to funders. It is better to apply together. CAIC has applied for grants with AAP, faith-based groups, and others. When you do this, it also generates goodwill with the other group.
9) Be geographic.
Look in your own backyard. For example, privately owned hospitals usually have foundations that are commissioned to support worthwhile causes in their areas. Lisa reads Crain's Chicago Business to find out what businesses in the area are up to.
10) Be direct!
Just ask! They know you want support, so don't be shy. For example, Lisa felt CAIC wasn't getting enough funding from the state health department for the work it did in suburban areas. She made her case for this year's grant and got a 50% increase in funding from them.
CONCLUSION: FUNDRAISING IS RELATIONSHIP BUILDING
Please see the accompanying slide deck for more detail on all these points.
Debbie started by saying that she always tries to make the positive point that fundraising allows the community to invest in their health.
1) All coalitions can increase resources.
- Make your case
- Build collaborative relationships
- Recruit with fundraising in mind (both for staff and board members)
- In-kind, underwriting, and offsetting costs make a difference
- Encourage creativity, use the natural skills of your staff and partners
- Always say thank you!–even when funders say no. You've just taken the first step in the relationship.
2) Background on TAPI
Debbie became director of TAPI in 1996. A 3-year grant had just run out, TAPI had no sponsoring home, and only 1 year of transitional funding. Now TAPI has a budget of $989,000 and 5 full-time staffers, plus 2 part-timers and another 6 people working on the county billing project. Funding comes from a state contract that supports multiple activities, as well as from counties for whom TAPI bills Medicaid for vaccine administration. TAPI is also funded by local foundations, pharmaceutical companies, joint education projects with AAP, and small grants from March of Dimes, Maternal and Child Health, local corporations, and health plans.
3) Think like a funder
- Know funders' objectives and help them reach their goals
- Always talk to funders in advance of submitting a grant. This way you will write the grant appropriately and not waste your time.
- Use measurable results to your advantage
- Addressing disparities and reaching special populations have great appeal
- Collaborate with like-minded organizations
4) Make it easy to give.
Many partners want to reach your audience and will be happy to sponsor a project, especially if it has their name on it (e.g., baby bibs about infant immunization).
5) Make it fun.
TAPI has held a silent auction as a fundraiser for a number of years. This is a fun way to engage the community and show off local talent. TAPI makes $2,800-$3,200 each year from this event. Creativity is encouraged in other ways; e.g., two young women who survived pertussis share a percentage of their craft business to help TAPI share the importance of pertussis vaccination.
6) Celebrate your success. Tell your story. Provide opportunities for your partners to be visible. Thank them often!
When you tell your story and do your job well, people will want to work with you. It is important to acknowledge your funders publically.
7) The key to corporate sponsorships is to act early to meet budget deadlines.
You can ask for money for specific events, meetings and meals, and print materials. Some companies may do your printing in their print shop for free or at cost.
8) Let your community invest in your good work!
For example, TAPI held a focus group with older adults who suggested that relevant immunization information could be provided via a placemat, as many eat at community centers and would read such information when bored. Arizona Public Services sponsored the printing of an attractive placemat with the slogan, "Plant the seeds to a healthy family. Vaccinate yourself & everyone around you" and elder services distributed them.
QUESTIONS FOR LISA AND DEBBIE
Lisa first commented that her principle of 'throwing darts' was not in conflict with Debbie's principle of always talking to funders before submitting a grant. Lisa agreed that knowing what the funder is looking for is important, and she always tries to find a personal contact even when filling out generic online applications.
Deborah Wexler asked for more information on Crain's Chicago Business magazine. Lisa did not know for sure if Crain's covered other areas, but intended it as an example of a business resource where one could find out the latest on foundations, and private and public companies. Debbie said she looks at the Arizona Business Journal for such information.
Sharon Humiston asked whether CAIC and TAPI hired grant writers. Lisa said she wrote all CAIC grants as she thought it was too hard to translate the requirements to an outsider. Debbie said most of TAPI's grantwriting was done in-house, but they sometimes used outside help when in a time crunch.
Amy wanted coalitions to know about a recent UN committee effort to ban mercury worldwide. Although this is a noble goal, ethyl mercury (i.e., thimerosal) would be included in the ban which would mean that children in developing nations would be much less likely to get life-saving vaccines. According to WHO, if thimerosal is no longer in use, single dose vials will increase the amount of transportation and storage space required more than threefold with an estimated cost increase that exceeds $300 million annually.
Pediatrics recently published a an endorsement of WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization pertaining to the use of thimerosal in vaccines. Three commentaries accompany their endorsement of the use of thimerosal in vaccines. The first titled Ban on Thimerosal in Draft Treaty on Mercury: Why the AAP’s Position in 2012 Is So Important provides the rationale for the AAP call for the removal of thimerosal from vaccines in 1999. The commentary concludes with this statement: "Had the AAP known what research has revealed in the intervening 14 years, it is inconceivable to us that these organizations (AAP and USPHS) would have made the joint statement of July 7, 1999. The WHO recommendation to delete the ban on thimerosal must be heeded or it will cause tremendous damage to current programs to protect all children from death and disability caused by vaccine-preventable diseases.”
Besides wanting to draw attention to the UN proposal, Amy also thought that coalitions might be able to use the AAP statement above (i.e., they wouldn't have called for a ban on thimerosal in 1999 if they knew then what they know now) as ammunition when working with state legislatures that want to ban, or that have already banned, thimerosal in vaccines.
Amy has written a summary of this issue on the ECBT website, shotofprevention.com.
Here are the four journal articles that relate to this issue.
- AAP's Statement of Endorsement: Recommendation of WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on Immunization
- Global Vaccination Recommendations and Thimerosal
- Ban on Thimerosal in Draft Treaty on Mercury: Why the AAP's Position in 2012 Is So Important
- Global Justice and the Proposed Ban on Thimerosal-Containing Vaccines
Every year recommendations for routine use of vaccines in children, adolescents and adults are developed by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) and, when adopted by the Director of CDC, become official CDC/HHS policy. Effective in 2013, the recommended immunization schedules for persons aged 0 through 18 years and persons 19 years and older will be published together in an MMWR Supplement [online publication 01-28-13, MMWR publication 02-01-13] instead of being published in MMWR Weekly on two different dates.
CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD) maintains the most current immunization schedules on the Vaccines and Immunizations pages of CDC’s Web site (www.cdc.gov/vaccines). To stay up to date with CDC’s schedule page, the agency encourages organizations to subscribe to CDC’s free content syndication service. Content syndication allows organizations to integrate CDC Web content such as immunization schedules into their web sites with automatic updates whenever changes are made on the CDC site. Often, organizations download a PDF of a CDC immunization schedule and place it on their site to share with visitors. However, subscribing to the content syndication service would be a more reliable strategy for organizations to adopt.
Organizations can subscribe to CDC content syndication at http://tools.cdc.gov/syndication.