“What can I do to make a difference in the world?” is one of the questions that come into the minds of many of us. “I live far away”, “I’m too busy”, “I’m not powerful enough”. And these are some of the answers we give ourselves. But guess what? Together, and a little bit at a time, we can all make a difference!
Perhaps this is best illustrated by the “Ant Andy and the Storm” story. Andy was one ant of an anthill that, one day, noticed a heavy storm coming. Andy had a sense of urgency, but he alone could not save the anthill, no matter how wise or strong he was. Andy addressed the community to face the challenge: it’s a need to act! The ants huddled together, which enabled them to survive, and after the storm, they rebuilt a safer home.
Lightup Impact's history with donations
Since 2021, and with your support of our crowdfunding campaigns, Lightup Impact has empowered young grassroots leaders in East Africa to create sustainable social change in their communities. Now, we’ve launched our very own monthly giving program to ensure the long-term success of this mission.
Building an ecosystem of successful and sustainable grassroots organizations in East Africa that drive social change is great! But it doesn’t come cheap. Many expenses are involved, from administration to marketing, technology, staff, networking to mobilize resources, and engaging local communities.
In the past, crowdfunding campaigns have been essential in supporting our programs and activities:
- “Founder Tour Program 2022”: with the help of 67 donors, we raised 4 327 euros to support 6 grassroots organizations (4 from Kenya, 1 from Uganda, and 1 from Rwanda), each receiving 500 euros to support projects within their communities – benefiting around 200 children, women, and youth. Read more here.
- “Skills Development and Innovation for Impact Program”: with the support of 100 donors, we raised 16 015 euros, which we will use to train the leadership, advocacy, governance, fundraising, and communication skills of 2 grassroots organizations, Usanii Village Africa (Uganda) and Soulevement Lives CBO Kenya. This 1-year program will prepare these organizations to raise resources sustainably. Read more here.
Although these campaigns were incredibly successful, crowdfunding isn’t stable, and without the necessary funds, we cannot help other grassroots leaders create and grow their impact. The entire chain is broken.
Why a monthly giving program?
A monthly giving program is a recurring, convenient, impactful donation program that offers numerous benefits for donors, Lightup Impact, and our member organizations. Some key advantages include:
- Long-term impact and commitment: With monthly giving, you can make a long-term commitment to a cause and a more significant impact over time, even if your contributions are modest. When added together, these regular donations add up to a substantial sum, which can contribute to the sustainability of a cause(s).
- Sustainability and financial stability: Having a steady and predictable income allows us to plan for the future, invest in long-term projects, and budget for and respond to unexpected challenges more effectively.
- Reduced fundraising costs and ease of administration: Hosting regular fundraising campaigns and attracting new donors are costly and time-consuming. With a more sustainable income, we can focus on cultivating and retaining existing donors who are passionate about our cause(s). Additionally, automated donation reduces administrative burdens for both parties and ensures a smooth and efficient process that becomes part of a routine.
- Flexibility for donors and better donor engagement: By giving small but regular amounts, you can contribute to many different causes you care about without making a large one-time donation. Our regular communication with you fosters a sense of community and reinforces the impact of your contributions.
- Maximizing impact and encouragement: With more stable funding, we can better plan and execute our projects. When others see the collective impact of a community of monthly donors, it can serve as a powerful motivator for new supporters to get involved.
At its core, a monthly giving program fosters financial stability, long-term impact, and a stronger connection between you (our supporters) and our cause.
Where will your donation go?
Lightup Impact is committed to transparency and ethical behavior. We have and will continue to clearly communicate our mission and the impact of our programs as we go along.
As a donor, you can expect detailed descriptions of how funds are allocated to specific programs, projects, or initiatives and receive regular updates on any impact created as a result of your donation. We have also made available the budgets for our ongoing or planned programs and activities and our financial reports from past years.
On our blog, you can learn more about our members and their initiatives and find various impact stories of how your contributions can help make a positive change.
We have an open-door policy and encourage donors to ask any relevant questions (email@example.com). In the future, and according to demand, we will create a FAQ section on our donation page addressing your most common questions.
In general, your donations will go towards:
- financing our operating costs,
- making possible our annual conference, Lightup Impact Days,
- expanding our “Skills Development and Innovation for Impact Program”, and
- our Founder Tour and locally-led Founder Meetups.
Read more about this on our donation page.
Yes, you can do something to make this world better
Every “ant” matters, and every donation helps. Participating in our monthly giving program will help create a stronger and more stable chain, and make you a permanent fixture in our community of changemakers.
Be the change today – join us in our mission and Lightup your Impact with us.
A special thanks to Dr. Natasha de França for authoring this article.