Pros and Cons: Memorials

Memorials are gifts given in memory of someone who has died. To start a memorial giving program, let people know (through your newsletter, direct mail, press releases, and so on) that such a program is available. When you receive a gift, thank the donor and send an announcement to the family of the deceased.


  • It's one of the easiest ways to raise funds.
  • Little labor or cash is required.
  • It helps build your mailing list.
  • It can generate a steady income stream.


  • Gifts tend to be small.
  • It takes time and patience to develop such a program.


  • Be prompt in sending donor thank-you cards and announcements to the deceased person's family.
  • A memorial giving program works best in conjunction with a concerted public relations and marketing effort to increase your organization's visibility. (The exercises you completed in step 6 will be helpful here.)



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