Running a religious organization such as a church or charity is not a business. But these institutions have to handle money wisely, even as they focus on serving a purpose instead of earning profits. The balance can get tricky as you need money to sustain and achieve your mission. The best way to do this is by spending every dollar wisely and keeping financial planning on priority.
Even as you follow a good cause, you have to gain financial expertise to keep your organization afloat. Here is the best money advice you can rely on.
Account For Contributions
Since religious organizations survive on contributions, it is essential to account for them. After all, you are answerable to the donors, and keeping track of accounts makes it easy to address their questions. Start by classifying the contributions you receive, such as unrestricted, designated, and restricted contributions. Maintain the records on receipts and spending so that you have complete data at hand.
Get Smart With Budgeting
Like any business, you must have a realistic budget for running your operations. You will probably have to bear expenses like office space, employee salaries (not everyone can volunteer), utilities, and more. Budgeting enables you to have tight control over these expenses and ensures zero wastage. Prioritize essential expenses, and trim whatever you can. A good approach towards budgeting can make it easy to stay afloat and not depend too much on funds.
You may be great at philanthropy, but do not expect to do it all alone. Good financial planning is crucial to survival, so seek guidance from Christian financial advisors to make viable money decisions. Look for an expert who can guide you about investment strategies, planned giving, and estate and gift design. With experts helping with these strategic choices, you have to worry less about money. It means you can focus on your mission of making the world a better place.
Have A Clear Gift Acceptance Policy
Donors expect you to use their contributions for a cause. When running different initiatives, ensuring the right match between contributions and causes is cumbersome. Establishing a clear gift acceptance policy can avoid misunderstandings. You can define the minimum amount of a contribution to be considered as designated or restricted. It makes the process simpler and gives you more control over the allocation of funds.
Explore Revenue Streams
Do not depend only on donations to get a better hold on money while running a religious organization. Consider finding revenue streams that bring funds for day-to-day operations. For example, you can sell books, run coaching classes, or put up stalls at events. You can even ask members of the community to volunteer for such initiatives. This way, you have your own money, so you are not answerable to donors for everything.
Money is often the last thing religious organizations think about as they focus mainly on their cause. But you must prioritize it to stay afloat and run seamlessly at all times. These simple tips can help you survive and give the best to your mission.