Funding planning study for 2020 Lambeth Conference
THE anglican communion
"Having David Saint’s input as an independent yet critically sector-informed fundraising strategist enabled us to challenge and validate our assumptions and pointed us towards the strategic steps required. Because of his experience within the Christian sector, Action Planning was the natural choice for this job."
DAVID WHITE, CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER, ANGLICAN COMMUNION
The Anglican Communion is a fellowship of 45 autonomous national, regional and provincial churches from around the world, all of which are in communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury. It is responsible, via a separate charitable company, for organising and funding the Lambeth Conference, a gathering of bishops from the communion at the invitation of the Archbishop of Canterbury, which happens approximately every 10 years. Because of the lengthy interval between them, there is little or no operational continuity from one conference to the next. Action Planning was approached by the Anglican Communion’s new Chief Operating Officer David White, with whom David Saint had worked on previous projects with other charities, to support a preliminary study into the funding of the 2020 Lambeth Conference.
As a critical early step in the project, David Saint was asked to carry out the necessary background work in order to provide a straightforward and limited strategic indication of the direction the funding campaign should take. This included an examination of the estimated funding target, a breakdown of the likely sources of funding, including major donors, and a recommendation of the resources required.
David Saint began by gathering information from David White, from the 2008 Conference and from interviews with key stakeholders. From the data gleaned, and drawing on his own experience, he put together a set of documents assessing the fundraising target, estimated fundraising potential, the case for support, fundraising strategy and proposed fundraising resources.
Action Planning’s work enabled the Anglican Communion team to crystalise their somewhat nebulous impression of the challenge facing them into a bolder vision of the task, a firmer conviction in their estimates and a clearer idea of the next steps required.
It is always difficult to know when is the right time to carry out a fundraising feasibility study. But having a structured way to build an early assessment of potential, then validating the assumptions as more information becomes available, is a valuable way of providing a financial framework for project planning and management.