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The Only Mistake You Can Make is Not Asking for Help

So, your annual fund is sitting still, not growing at the pace you’d like? Here’s how one fraternity used the power of a wish list to raise more than $60,000 in just a few months.

In January of this year, Affinity client Alpha Zeta at Penn State appealed with a very specific need. In the midst of one of the coldest State College winters in recent history, the furnace system broke down and was unable to be repaired. The fraternity would now face a $50,000 bill to keep their active members warm.

As a result, their alumni president contacted Affinity, and with swift, agile precision, Affinity Connection crafted an appeal letter to be sent via direct mail to the active alumni members of Alpha Zeta at Penn State, and supported it with an accompanying electronic campaign of emailed newsletters, highlighting the progress of the fund monthly.

The result? An annual fund that was sitting at roughly $9k grew to nearly $70k by June. In five short months, 159 alumni contributed the necessary equity and the active members were able to stay warm. 

Yet another case of a stagnant annual fund roaring back to life was, well, coincidentally, also a fraternity chapter roaring back to life. Pi Kappa Phi at Penn State was forced to close its doors in 2014. Four years later, it has full university approval to return to the University Park campus, with a slew of brothers eager to take on positions of leadership and philanthropic duties.

In order to do so, however, they need $125k to pay bills, professionally clean the house and get everything prepared for the group of young men moving in this fall.

Alumni President Steve DiOrio is historically leading the charge and with the help of Affinity, has created a “409 Club,” in which donations of $409 or more allow recognition to the Club and fund the recolonization efforts. In less than two months, 34 brothers from the Alpha Mu Chapter of Pi Kappa Phi have raised over $18k. This significant ask was backed up with a print appeal letter, and also includes a special page on the client’s website, where a timeline, financial statement, honor roll and running total can all be found, offering a live, up-to-the-minute look at progress.

So, want to be the hero amongst your alumni brothers? Tell us your needs; your wish is our command.