How to Engage Younger Generations With Your Cause
Espace idées • March 29th, 2019
ounger generations will inevitably make up our future donor pools. It will therefore be essential for nonprofit organizations to put different strategies in place that are adapted to the reality of these generations. This approach is how you will convince them to get involved with your cause.
Here are some interesting facts about generations X, Y and Z drawn from Episode's latest study on philanthropic trends in Quebec:
- Generations X, Y, and Z report supporting different causes or organizations each year. They are more volatile donors.
- They are more attracted to challenge-type activities that are adventurous and unique.
- They are more demanding of organizations, looking for transparency, commitment and communication.
- Young generations are more focused on immediacy and will be more willing to make a donation if an organization's communications invite them to become involved.
For young professionals, 5 reasons motivate them to get involved with an organization:
- They believe in the cause
- It may improve their employment prospects
- Their friends volunteer with the cause
- They can be challenged
- By obligation from the employer
Organizations will certainly have to make significant changes to attract younger generations. Here are suggestions from Espace idées.
For your events:
- If your fundraising activity includes team registrations, encourage student participation and/or require a minimum number of students per team.
- Consider organizing a family activity.
- Organize visits or an “open house” exclusively dedicated to young people and adapt your content for them.
- Be very active on social media and talk about young people who are already involved with you.
- Adapt your fundraising events by creating different components, including those that encourage youth participation.
- Host your events in unique places.
- Present inspiring speakers (professional athletes, cancer survivors, innovative entrepreneurs, etc.). These are very popular with millennials.
For your board and committees:
- Propose a bylaw stating that a minimum of 2 people under the age of 45 should be an administrator on your board of directors.
- Plan board meetings in less intimidating, more "casual" spaces, offer a less formal structure and try to avoid jargon.
- Pair an experienced board member with a new member to act as a mentor.
- Create a “next generation” committee that reports to your board, but that has its own responsibilities.
- Create a youth organizing committee for fundraising activities targeted for this generation.
For volunteer opportunities:
- Involve students who must complete volunteer hours as part of their school programs. Take the opportunity to interest them in your cause and keep them engaged.
- Develop relationships with the school board, CEGEP, and any other organizations that work with youth.
- Consider representation activities at youth events.
- Share your volunteer needs on the Symplik website and on social media.
Finally, don’t hesitate to get in touch with young people by creating online surveys as well as asking questions directly to discover their preferences regarding community involvement.