Author Archives: Dalya Massachi

Grantwriter’s FastTrack Coaching Program: Spring Session Runs 4/28 – 5/22

 high-speed-rail  CFRE_ContEd_Logo14

Announcing the Spring Session of the….

Grantwriter’s FastTrack Coaching Program

~A personalized online community to shorten your grantwriting learning curve and help you win grants faster~

April 28 – May 22, 2014


The 4-week intensive Grantwriter’s FastTrack Coaching Program is a unique opportunity to receive in-depth group and individual training and coaching to fine-tune your grantwriting skills. We’ll cover a wide range of topics concerning the strategy and craft of grantwriting to foundations and corporations. You’ll earn  up to 11 Continuing Education credits for CFRE Int’l certification!

The FastTrack Program includes group training, thorough feedback and advice, and individual “laser” coaching: all to help you improve at least one grant proposal (and edit many others). Together we will create a safe and supportive online group of trusted colleagues.

This online program is designed for you if…

  • You have grantwriting responsibilities as a nonprofit development or program staff member, volunteer, or board member
  • You are a beginning/intermediate grantwriter
  • You have strong writing skills and want to explore the world of grantwriting

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Describe Your Unique Role in Collaborative Efforts

fabric threads[Dalya's Note: This is an excerpt from my award-winning book, Writing to Make a Difference: 25 Powerful Techniques to Boost Your Community Impact.]

You may recall my post about the value of collaboration. Today I want to talk about the importance of carving out a unique niche for your organization in those collaborative efforts.

Your work to advance your organization’s unique brand involves illustrating how you contribute essential threads to your community’s interwoven fabric. You serve as a crucial resource and contributor to social and/or environmental responsibility.

Collaboration combines your organization’s power with that of other organizations that share your values, in a strategic effort to benefit a larger number of people than you could alone.

Ask yourself: How does your work fit into the larger picture of your community’s well-being?

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6 Tricks to Make Your Content Skimmable

eyeglasses[Dalya's Note: This guest post by Laurel Dykema was originally published on November 14, 2013. Laurel Dykema joined Mission India in 2010 and currently serves as the staff writer and social media guru.]


Twitter-ers are tweeting.

Facebook-ers are posting.

Pinterest-ers are pinning.

Instagram-ers are picture-taking.

More micro content on the internet is piling up each day! So, what’s a great nonprofit to do in this age of bite-sized information?

Adapt. Or die.

Okay, okay. Maybe that’s a tad melodramatic.  :)

But if you want to engage today’s faster-than-a-cheetah-runs readers with content longer than a 140-character tweet, here’s what you need to do: create “skimmable” content.

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Creating a Direct Mail Letter that Sticks (Part 2)

mailbox[Dalya's Note: This guest post was written by Derrick Feldmann for Achieve. Originally published 12/10/13.]

Continued from Part 1

Tell a story that will resonate

Stories work. They put a face to your organization. More importantly, a story will allow the potential donor to see exactly whom their money is helping.

In many cases it’s best to focus on one individual or one family and show how their life was directly affected by your organization. Make it a narrative, be as illustrative as possible in telling their story, where they were before your cause stepped in, how exactly you helped them and where they are now. Data won’t be necessary as a well-illustrated story is much more effective than statistics.

Statistics can be useful when they’re true. But stats lack the ability to generate emotion like a compelling story. Emotions are key in fundraising, as opposed to data, which is just work. Though stats can add credibility to your copy, you don’t need much to make your case. Emphasize the “face” of your organization.

Tell them what you do

What makes you relevant? This paragraph is for giving your organization’s elevator pitch. In a few sentences, tell how your organization is different from every other organization and why it is really making a difference in the community.

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Creating a Direct Mail Letter that Sticks (Part 1)

mailbox[Dalya's Note: This guest post was written by Derrick Feldmann for Achieve. Originally published 12/10/13.]

Fundraising trends change rapidly but one piece continues to remain useful every year: the direct mail letter.

What might seem an archaic practice, if used the right way, can be a powerful tool for your end-of-year campaign. We know online giving during the last three months of the year accounts for nearly 40% of all online giving for the year – 22% in December alone – making your end-of-year letter a crucial fundraising piece.

Here are a few tips for writing a direct mail letter that will capture and engage your donors.

Start with the P.S.

Your whole message can be summed up in one sentence. Although the P.S. goes at the end, it should be the first thing you write when drafting the direct mail letter. Tell the reader what his or her donation will do. Tell them why you need their donation now and what this gift means to those receiving aid.

Why put this in the P.S.? Because people read it.

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