One of the best parts of being a part of the Z2 Systems community is seeing how different organizations utilize the NeonCRM to achieve the goals of their mission. We’ll be spotlighting one of those today – Share Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support. We talked with Megan Nichols, their Development & PR Director, to discuss one of their biggest events – the Walk for Remembrance & Hope.
Can you tell us about your organization?
Broadly speaking, Share serves families who experience the death of a baby during pregnancy or shortly after birth. We offer peer to peer support groups, information packets, phone support, hospital visits and much more all free of charge. We also provide training to healthcare professionals on topics such as perinatal bereavement, how to run an aftercare program, memory making and the rights of bereaved parents.
Share is truly an agency unlike any other. We are not funding research or seeking to prevent these tragedies from happening, but rather we introduce families to a community of understanding where their grief can be openly expressed and their baby’s life acknowledged. It is our goal to provide those we serve with a positive resolution to their grief.
What is the event that you just held? Tell us a bit of the history behind it.
On October 20, we held the 11th Annual Share Walk for Remembrance & Hope. What began as a memorial service for 25 Share families has grown into an incredible awareness opportunity for perinatal bereavement that generates over $80,000 to support Share’s programs and services. Over 3,000 participated this year among 165 teams in memory of 425 babies.
We host the event every October to honor Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month as declared by President Reagan in 1988. All 93 Share chapters across the country are invited to host a Share Walk in their area in congruence with the national office event.
If you’ve previously run this event, how were donations and registrations tracked before moving to the NeonCRM?
We have managed event information through various efforts before Neon – i.e. Active Giving, RegOnline, an Access database and Excel spreadsheets. It was difficult to keep track of it all. Now the processes of social fundraising and event registration are streamlined into one cohesive element because of Neon. Gone are the days of exporting, importing and cross-referencing data.
How did the event go this year? Did you see an improvement over previous events?
We have always received support through paper registrations and pledge tracking, and less that 5 years ago these were the only options we offered. With electronic formats growing exponentially, we knew we needed to take steps to improve our processes and to stay current. We implemented online fundraising in 2008 and online registration in 2011.
The Neon online registration and fundraising processes worked really well for us and our constituents. We had over 300 new attendees and raised over $25,000 with our social campaigns! We also doubled our number of social fundraisers and had growth in our event merchandise sales.
What did the NeonCRM do to help with this year’s event?
Neon helped keep us on track to meeting and exceeding our event goals. Through the different modules within the system, we were able to keep our constituents engaged and informed.
What are your goals for the future with this event?
We see nothing but opportunity for the Share Walk for Remembrance & Hope in the future. We plan to increase our revenue by 30% for 2013 based on the response and growth from this past year alone.