Maecenas Initiative: increasing individual philanthropy

Maecenas Initiative: increasing individual philanthropy

By Arts & Business


The Maecenas Initiative was an Arts & Business’ programme to increase individual philanthropic support of the arts in the UK. The first part of this detailed report explains the success of charitable giving in the US and Canada. It then goes on to discuss factors that can influence and improve the climate for individual giving. The second part is a comprehensive glossary of charitable giving mechanisms.

Successful individual fundraising requires a combination of strong board leadership, trained professional fundraisers, and adequate resources to support the effort, yet professional development staff are responsible for the lion’s share of development work. A recent survey by the Urban Institute and the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University found that, while nearly 75% of organisations report using volunteers for fundraising, 53% said volunteers are responsible for less than one-tenth of all fundraising. Staff bear the brunt of the fundraising burden, and, ironically, the survey found that organisations that characterize their staff, executive director, and board members as “highly involved” with fundraising have executive directors even more involved with fundraising than their development staff.

Resource type: Research | Published: 2014