Case studies > Skills sharing > Fundraising Strategy

The Ben Kinsella Trust and Beth Crackles

This is a photo of small charity member The Ben Kinsella Trust. Click the image to visit their website

The Ben Kinsella Trust is an organisation that has been responsible for many changes and achievements in the battle against knife crime. The Trust was founded in 2008 after Ben Kinsella was tragically murdered in a knife attack in Islington, London. The Trust has a static, interactive exhibition space where it educates young people about the choices they make and the consequences of those choices through telling Ben’s Story. The intention is to make young people think twice about becoming involved in knife crime and to highlight the devastating effect that it has on families and communities.

In May 2015, Yohana Franklin, Trusts Manager at The Ben Kinsella Trust, contacted Small Charities Coalition requesting support in developing a fundraising strategy.

Yohana and The Ben Kinsella Trust were then matched with Beth Crackles, Head of Development at Toynbee Hall. Yohana and Beth decided that it would be beneficial to have an initial meeting in person in order to introduce themselves and determine the aims of their match. Following this, the rest of the match was then completed via email, over the phone and with an additional face-to-face meeting.

Although the initial aim of the match was to develop a fundraising strategy for The Ben Kinsella Trust, upon meeting in person, Yohana and Beth established that it was first necessary to refresh the organisation’s business plan.

Beth described the outcome of her initial meeting with Yohana in the following way:

We agreed that it was the organisation’s ambition and how that translated into an operational delivery plan that was most challenging for fundraising. We therefore focused on how Yohana could engage with the trustees more effectively to get clarity from the organisation’s business plan – from which a fundraising strategy would follow.

Yohana explained how she was able to receive feedback via email from Beth on some of the work that she completed between their meetings, and how they were then able to meet again and discuss what needed to be done next to progress her work.  

She went on to describe some of the ways in which Beth was able to support the development of a new fundraising plan for The Ben Kinsella Trust:

The work was mostly strategic and part of the process was reviewing our business plan that needed refreshing before we could complete a new fundraising plan. This included planning for a trustee away day and also some feedback on fundraising applications.

In addition to this, Beth informed us of the ways in which she was able to use her experience to directly support the Trust:

I provided Yohana with budget templates as she had asked about this and I re-worked a letter that she had drafted for a funder, to try to focus and highlight the key points; sometimes it’s easier to do when you’re not so close to it.

Reflecting upon the match, Yohana described how useful it had been to approach producing a fundraising strategy from a different angle. She also noted how much she had enjoyed receiving support from Beth, and how this had been enhanced by the fact that they shared a similar set of values: 

I work for a small charity where there is not a huge amount of support, so speaking to someone independent from this was really beneficial. Being able to tap into Beth’s experience of working in charities and in the development role she does was invaluable.

Beth recommended the matching service to other fundraisers based on her own enriching experience:

Professionally it’s helpful to get experience of how other organisations operate and it’s good to be mentoring as I see that being important to me for future roles. The Ben Kinsella Trust was really interesting to me as I was aware of the case and it’s so close to home – it was nice to work on something local to me and that affects where I live

Finally, Yohana concluded on a very positive note by describing how the match with Beth has enabled The Ben Kinsella Trust to optimise its strategy for the near future:

Our vision for the next 3 years was reviewed and clarified during an away day that we designed together. As a result of this, our business plan was completed.

 

Match completed October 2015.

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