United Way of Metropolitan Chicago (UWMC) needed a new, more diversified fundraising strategy. The organization had moved from broad partner-agency funding to a more targeted focus. The new emphasis was on improving the foundations for individual, family, and community success through investments in education, health, financial stability, and basic needs. It was also implementing an initiative to better coordinate services in the highest-need neighborhoods of Greater Chicago. The organization sought BCG’s help in designing a sustainable plan to raise money to support its new model through 2020.
The BCG team conducted more than two dozen interviews with donors and potential donors, including employee campaign managers, corporate gift administrators, individual donors, and private foundations. Using information from these interviews—in addition to historical fundraising data and best practices from other United Way chapters—the team developed a holistic long-term strategy that matched UWMC’s new direction.
Armed with the new strategy, the organization’s fundraising staff reconfigured its approach to donor engagement, adopting a more targeted and collaborative way. The strategy set a clear—and bold—goal for fundraising by the year 2020. It has generated additional enthusiasm among the UWMC team about their ability to reach their goal.
United Way of Metropolitan Chicago (UWMC) is the largest private funder of health and human-services programs in metropolitan Chicago. With a focus on educational success, financial stability, health access, and basic needs support, the organization works to improve lives and strengthen neighborhoods across the city and suburbs. BCG has partnered with UWMC for more than a decade.