Duluth, Georgia-based Rainbow Village has been providing transitional housing to homeless families with children for over 25 years. In 2008, the organization’s leadership determined it was time to significantly expand their mission…with a goal of tripling the number of families they serve. They took all the right steps. A board-led strategic planning process helped to define their goals, costs were researched and a goal of $7 million established, and a consultant was brought in to complete a funding feasibility study. That’s where it almost fell apart before Convergent was engaged.
After receiving a disappointing estimate from the previous consultants, Rainbow Village’s Former CEO Nancy Yancy found herself remembering one sentence she heard while attending Convergent Principal Tom Ralser’s presentation at a Georgia Alliance to End Homelessness conference:
Nancy’s recollection of this one seemingly simple sentence from Tom can be looked at as the turning point in Rainbow Village’s Capital Campaign. After determining that the original firm’s “old school” philosophy was not the right approach, Rainbow Village ultimately hired Convergent to manage their campaign.
Convergent revisited the individuals interviewed in the original feasibility study conducted by the previous consultants. It was immediately apparent that the total scope—and impact—of the campaign had not been properly explained. In fact, the process of reinterviewing these individuals directly led to two separate $1 million investments, which provided significant momentum from the outset of the campaign.
I can tell you of all the things connected to this campaign, the greatest angst for our board was fear of having to ask for money. Taking away this angst—and replacing it with the reassurance that professionals would be making the ask—instilled our confidence in Convergent to lead a successful campaign.