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Re: [school-discuss] ANN: Calendula - fundraising for nonprofitsand schools
Thanks for sending along your announcement about Calendula to the list.
That sounds absolutely exciting!
I personally am vested in helping nonprofits adopt Free Software
(currently working around the Washinton DC, USA, area). Of course one of
the two biggest tools of which I have seen a gap is fundraising management
software, (in addition to an easy-to-setup email program that integrates
and group-shares calendar and webmail). I think the fundraising management
software is really a central point where Free Software has one of the
sharpest edges to offer the nonprofit sector.
I would love to talk with you, first hand, off the list, and hear about
your progress and see if we can set up some tests.
Also, I have included one or two folks in my BCC that I have briefly
chated with in the past about developing something to [eventually] take
the place of "Raiser's Edge".
Please send me a line as I am eager to hear what you have to say.
Karl G. Pena
SEUL-EDU Projects Liason
On Thu, 31 Jul 2003, Darryl Caldwell wrote:
> Date: Thu, 31 Jul 2003 17:40:03 -0500
> From: Darryl Caldwell <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> Reply-To: email@example.com
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Subject: [school-discuss] ANN: Calendula - fundraising for nonprofits and
> Announcing Calendula
> One of the most important pieces of software at work in most nonprofit
> organizations is the fundraising management system. This was true even
> before the current economic climate, it is an imperative now. Fundraising
> management systems in the form of specialized databases help NPOs track
> their donors, prospective donors, and help manage their events. Many
> charities, schools, and educational groups can't survive without healthy
> relationships with their supporters, a relationship made easier with this
> The Calendula project is just getting started, and hopes to address this
> If you work for a non-profit, here's the justification for supporting a
> * In 2002 (and in a shaky economy) U.S. citizens donated almost
> $50 billion in individual donations to nonprofits. Nearly all of
> this money was tracked in proprietary software systems by the
> nonprofits which received the respective gifts. Some of the
> most popular proprietary systems are Raiser's Edge, Donor2,
> Paradigm, and GiftMaker Pro.
> * High quality, proprietary fundraising systems generally costs
> $5000 to $20,000. This significantly adds to a nonprofit's
> administrative costs and reduces the amount of money going toward
> its goals.
> * Smaller and mid-sized nonprofits are blocked by a financial
> barrier to the technological enhancements that are enjoyed by
> larger NPOs that can afford the top proprietary systems.
> * Proprietary databases are not based on any standard in terms of
> their operations and user interfaces. A typical development
> director will only stay in his or her job for 3 years before
> moving on to a different organization. This means they will have
> to be retrained to use the database system at the new organization
> or they will attempt to either buy or develop a crude system on
> their own to get their job done. This adjustment period costs the
> nonprofit money. If there were an open fundraising database
> standard, development directors could hop from job to job without
> the need for more training in the system.
> If you're a software developer, here's why you might be interested in this
> * We hope to make a system that can be generalized. While we want to
> address fundraising needs first and foremost, we also want to build
> an infrastructure that can be used for other application that deal
> with the human contacts a foundation makes: action centers, political
> organizing, conference planning, general contact management.
> For-profit Corporate-oriented CMS solutions rarely are adaptable to
> the unique needs of nonprofit organizations.
> * We will use state of the art technology, and we want to support as
> many development languages as possible. But, what languages we can
> support depends on what developers show up to work with us. If you
> have a favorite language you want to be able to write non-profit
> fundraising and contact management solutions, join us so that we
> can support your language.
> * We will use state of the art Free Software database technology
> underneath. If you are excited about challenging data design
> problems, we can use your help immediately!
> * It's an opportunity to get on the ground floor of a new project.
> The project development site is located on FSF and GNU's savannah.gnu.org.
> There you will find the initial requirements doc, the initial roadmap, and
> a draft database schema. The targeted development tools for the first
> incarnation/prototype are wxpython and postgreSQL.
> If you are interested in getting involved visit:
> To sign up for the development mailing list, please visit:
> BTW, the GNU endorsement isn't fully officially yet, but it should be
> soon. Folks from the FSF and the GNU project have been working with us on
> getting started and they are very excited about it.