Trellis Supportive Care (TSC), formerly known as Hospice and Palliative Care Center of Winston-Salem, a beloved and broadly-supported health care organization, approached RSC to conduct a Fundraising Assessment to review trends and establish the path to increase annual fundraising by 50% over a four-year period.

TSC's fundraising program was strong but not stable, with troubling barriers that prevented reliable year-over-year growth. Most gifts were one-time contributions, as either honor / memorial gifts (made in honor of a patient) or participants in an annual TSC 5k race. Consequently,
annual fund donor retention was less than 30% and more than 1,000 donors were not
retained each year. 




Working with RSC, TSC revamped staff and volunteer roles, increased donor communications, and implemented stronger fundraising systems across the institution, achieving fundraising goals in the first year of RSC’s engagement.

 As part of a multi-year fundraising plan, RSC guided TSC to develop a robust communications strategy necessary to engage donors at all levels through mission-focused storytelling, cultivate and educate supporters, and broaden direct mail and other solicitation methods. The organization also created a Stewardship committee of volunteers and board members to
make thank you calls, write personal notes and host special events for first-time donors,
resulting in significant overall new donor growth, improved retention, and upgraded
giving from current donors.

While many non-profits, especially performing arts, do not rely on honor memorial and event donors, they should not be written-off as transactional supporters or one-time givers.
First-time donors make gifts for any number of reasons, and it’s the fundraiser’s job to
engage them to the next gift. Working with RSC, TSC is building lasting relationships with
donors at every level of support. 


What the client said

“RSC has been a wonderful partner as our fundraising program has matured,” said Foundation Executive Board Director Ellen Coble. “They helped us to build structure and systems as part of building a true philanthropic culture here.”


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