Voices for Children Montgomery (VFCM)

Development Planning & Fundraising Support


Children and teens enter foster care through no fault of their own. Most have been abused, neglected, or abandoned and are unable to continue living safely with their families. Being removed from their home due to abuse or neglect is immensely traumatizing for children and can have potentially life-long negative consequences. Foster children need and deserve support, guidance, and stability.

The mission of Voices for Children Montgomery (VFCM) is to train and support volunteer advocates for children in Montgomery County foster care to ensure their placement in safe, permanent homes. This mission is accomplished through the recruitment, training and on-going support and supervision of volunteers from the community who are appointed by the Juvenile Court judges to serve as Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for children.

Voices for Children Montgomery is growing its team of staff and volunteers to ensure that every child in County foster care who needs a CASA, gets one. At this time of our engagement, VFCM served 185 out of 420 eligible children. To meet its goal of serving ALL the children in Montgomery foster care in need of a CASA volunteer by 2026, VCFM needed to double its budget, hire eight more professional staff members and recruit and train an additional 50 active volunteers.

The Process

Working closely with the board and staff, Due East created a 5-year strategic development plan that supports the ambitious growth needed for VFCM to serve all children in Montgomery foster care. First, the team conducted a Growth Capacity Assessment to determine relative strengths and opportunities within each of our five drivers, which was supplemented by an audit of VFCM’s development function.

Then, bringing decades of hands-on fundraising experience to bear, Due East worked with VCFM to craft a 5-Year Development Plan to support VFCM’s strategic growth goals and financial needs.   Due East worked with the board’s Development Committee to design a year-end fundraising campaign focused on individual donors to launch the new plan.

The Results

The Development Committee set an ambitious goal of raising $50,000 over 10 weeks from mid-October through December 2020. The Board pledged half of the initial goal with a commitment to raise the rest from their networks and VCFM donors. The Board and staff ultimately raised over $75K, nearly five times the total donations from individual donors in the year prior. Many inactive donors and former board members contributed.

“I cannot say enough about Due East Partners! They took the time to listen to people in every part of our organization, from volunteers to Board members. They guided us in formulating a development plan with long-range strategies, tailored to our strengths. In the first three months after we began implementation of the plan, our end-of-year campaign raised $77,000—154% of our goal and a 300% increase over the previous year—and we received the largest private foundation grant in the 30-year history of our organization.”

Francha Davis

Executive Director, Voices for Children Montgomery

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