As the Vice President of Development for Camp Fire First Texas, my favorite part about fundraising is likely not what you think it is. My favorite part is not securing donations from our supporters (don’t tell my boss!). Although that is important, for sure, and it is awesome when a donation comes in that is “gong-worthy”! (I actually do have a big gong in my office that my team and I bang to celebrate success.)
But my very favorite part of my job is
- engaging, and
- building relationships with people.
It is an honor to learn from others about what is meaningful to them. You see, I LOVE PEOPLE. I believe every person has a story and every person is important. Sitting down for coffee and a conversation reveals wonderful and interesting bits and pieces of a person’s life. People want to be listened to as they share part of themselves. For me, it is a joy to be that listener.
Being an extrovert, it is sometimes hard to talk less and listen more, but when I take the time to do those two things, it is so worth it. I have found that no matter the difference between myself and the people I meet, there is always something for us to connect over and an opportunity to discover common interests.
Take a look at these definitions:
- Connect: to join, link, or fasten together; unite or bind.
- Engagement: involvement, a pledge; an obligation or agreement; to become involved; to occupy the attention or efforts of (a person or persons); to attract and hold fast.
- Relationship: a connection, association, or involvement; connection between persons; an emotional or other connection between people; to establish a social or sympathetic relationship with a person or thing.
- Philanthropy: altruistic concern for human welfare and advancement, usually manifested by donations of money, property, or work.
Who wouldn’t want my job when it’s broken down in this way?
Here at Camp Fire First Texas, we’re not just focused on running a financially strong organization. We’re more focused on connection, engagement, and investing in relationships that have the power to transform young people.
According to a recent report from Camp Fire National, young people are craving deep, real connections with others who see them as they are. This realization is what drives our organization’s mission and vision. We don’t just provide incredible outdoor and afterschool programs for young people. We use those programs to connect young people to the outdoors, to others, and to themselves.
As we approach the end of 2022, will you consider joining our year-end giving campaign?
Young people – and parents – are calling for connection, and we’re working to answer that call, but we can’t do it without your help. To help us continue making a difference in our community, click here. Who knows? Perhaps I will be able to connect with you for coffee and conversation in real life.
About Camp Fire First Texas
Camp Fire First Texas invests in North Texas communities by providing out-of-school time and outdoor learning programs for children and youth while also offering workforce development programs for early childhood educators. We envision a community in which every child has equitable access to the learning opportunities they need to succeed and thrive in a rapidly changing world.