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The NoNo and the ProNo

A new research paper from Cass Business School 'The Art of Refusal: Promising Practice for Grant Makers and Grant Seekers' presents the findings of a study of experiences at the point of grant refusal among both seekers and makers of grants to charities.

Read more in the News & Blog section

“After working with Lesley, I've always emerged with a clearer idea of what work to carry out in order to get where I want to go.”

Vicki Elcoate, Executive Director, The UK Environmental Law Association

Lesley Hynes

Fundraising Strategy

Lesley works closely with the chief executive, head of fundraising, or trustees to develop fundraising strategies relevant to the organisation's needs. Sometimes an organisation can benefit from one or two sessions with Lesley to refocus their direction. Other organisations will benefit from more intensive work across the whole team and/or the production of an organisational strategy.

Case Study from Artists First

Lesley approached us through one of our trustees offering to raise the money to pay for 10 days of her time! I don't think she makes a habit of this, but she was inspired by what we do and impressed by the commitment of the trustee whom she knew very well.

She raised the funds from two philanthropists who she knew would be interested in what Artists First does. At the time we weren't a charity (although now we are) and had £1200 in the bank account.

Lesley's approach was strategic, direct and focussed, but she made us feel included and valued as a group of volunteer workers and trustees. She met with the artists who are all learning disabled and involved them in the planning and approaches and she attended a trustees meeting to share her ideas and to learn from us as a group about our needs and how we wanted our work to be presented to funders.

In 10 days, Lesley guided the strategic development of the organisation, produced a case for support and approached two major funders for multi year grants, one of which gave us a two year grant. She also left us with appeal materials, a list of funders to approach and was clearly keen to ensure that we built on what she had helped us to start. She remains in touch after two years, sending us information on funders and keeping us focussed albeit from afar! Last year, she arranged for the two funders who paid for the fundraising to meet the artists and trustees. It was really motivating for everyone and both ladies gave us more funding.

Artists First feels on firmer ground now, not simply in terms of money in the bank, but in terms of strategic direction and governance. Without Lesley's help, we would not have moved forward so progressively and confidently, and we are in a very different place now to where I think we would be without her hard work and support. And that's happened over a relatively short space of time.

Donna Baber, Chair of the trustees