Part two of an interview with philanthropist Tiffany Futch
Tiffany Futch has grown from a community volunteer to a woman with a history of raising millions of dollars. She wasn’t born a philanthropist and fearless fundraiser: she became one. She shares her story to inspire you.
“Today, I’ll ask anyone for money without second guessing. Now I know that it’s less about the ask and more about sharing the difference a nonprofit is making. Fundraising is not aways sitting across the table from someone and asking for money. I’ve fundraised by inviting friends and family to events, for my own mission trips through online campaigns, and even by selling southern-style sausage and cheeseballs for a work challenge. I’ve helped raised as little as $25 up to millions and I consider each a success.”
Of course some successes are bigger than others. “I was the board chair of CHOICES: Memphis Center for Reproductive Health when we closed out our multi-million dollar capital campaign for a new birthing center. I had to push through a lot personally during that time and I was overjoyed to see the building completed. I knew it was a part of so many people’s legacies and it was going to improve the birthing experience of families in Memphis for generations to come. I purposely drive by the building on my way home from work and I want to cry every time I think about what we accomplished.”
Tiffany is part of a long legacy of Black women philanthropists and fundraisers. “Every year, there’s an article with the headline that Black women are leading in philanthropic efforts and I want to say ‘Duh!’ I remember all the examples of Black women who I saw volunteering in my school, donating to sports team fundraisers, and establishing endowments through my sorority. My mom was always involved in fundraisers at my school. I’ve always been surrounded by Black women giving back. I just wish that we were more visible in the media so that younger generations can see.”
Tiffany shares her suggestions for how to get started. “Start with what you can and don’t worry about if it’s not as much as others. All of those drops in a bucket eventually create overflow! Each year, review how much you gave the previous year and challenge yourself to adjust your lifestyle so you give at least 1% more. I currently give 10% of my annual income to non-profits through planned giving through small changes that make a big difference. Also, don’t do it alone. Share your passion for giving with your friends, coworkers, church members, or anyone who will listen. Share how you’re making adjustments in your lifestyle, using your resources, or creating more streams of income so that you can be more philanthropic. You never know who you will inspire to start or deepen their philanthropic journey. And don’t forget to submit for your company match when can easily double your impact. Keep the cycle going because there’s a younger you that benefited from a Black woman philanthropist.”
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