Tutor blogs

How to make your ideas ‘sticky’

By Bernard Ross Some ideas are ‘sticky’ – that is they seem to very quickly and easily acquire status and circulation. Some of these ideas are natural – that is they have grown up seemingly spontaneously – and some have been created – consciously designed by advertising executives, marketers or charity fundraisers. This article explores […]

Read more

30 years running & £350M raised… is it REALLY worth the hype?!

It’s crazy to think that the National Arts Fundraising School, or NAFS as it’s affectionately known, has been running for 30 years. Because 30 years ago, arts & cultural fundraising was a totally different space. Remember when Tony Blair got his guitar out, declared that music is power and set up the National Foundation for […]

Read more

Halloween? Spooks? Witches? Creepy Crawlies? Hah! The real Halloween terror is within…

In this blog, fundraising guru and School Director Bernard Ross talks fundraising fears in this halloween blog… At this time of year I see a lot of blogs based around the idea of an arts organisation’s worst nightmare. The nightmare varies from losing NPO status, to a major donor reneging on a gift, to a […]

Read more
NAFS Alumni event Sep 2018

The Power of the Network

With over 1,800 people trained through the National Arts Fundraising School over the past 30 years, the alumni network is an amazing source of advice, guidance and support when you leave the school. As an Alumna myself (and now lead tutor on the School) I’ve experienced this first hand. So when the latest Alumni event […]

Read more
Ayr Gaeity

Live from NAFS: Dana’s blog (day 5 & 6)

Small changes, big changes… Today’s blog will be my final blog – because I feel like it sums up the whole week in one simple act. You may ask yourself – how quickly can the learning on NAFS be implemented? The answer? As quickly as you read that last sentence. The brilliant Suzanne McLellan desmontrated the […]

Read more

Live from NAFS: Dana’s blog (day 4)

Communication is key Day four at NAFS prepares our attendees for the all important pitch (if you know someone who has been on the course… ask them about the pitch task!) and our communications expert Jules Bellingham takes attendees through the part of the ‘ask’ that, ironically, we think about the least… the physical experience […]

Read more
NAFS Apr 2018 day 1

Live from NAFS: Dana’s blog (Day 3)

The business of fundraising Company giving has had a lot of press lately: most recently an artist led campaign that meant BAE recalled their sponsorship of the Great Exhibition of the North – which means that cultural organisations have to consider whether they want to pursue corporate support at all, let alone how they want […]

Read more

Live from NAFS: Dana’s blog (Day 2)

“One of the most powerful words in fundraising is ‘imagine’. Imagine if you could change this today. Imagine if you could stop this forever. Imagine if you could make this happen.” Day two at the National Arts Fundraising School kicks off with Director of the school, Bernard Ross, encouraging our attendees to re-imagine their own […]

Read more

Live from NAFS: Dana’s blog (day 1)

Fresh from day one of the first of our 30th anniversary Schools in 2018, tutor Dana Segal shares her thoughts… Look out for her daily blogs coming this week. The arrival of 29 fabulous chief executives, producers, artists, fundraisers and artists brings out not just the sunshine but also passions that exists across the arts […]

Read more

Using behavioural economics in arts & culture fundraising

Dana Segal, NAFS tutor and =mc Partner Consultant blogs on her experience at the Change for Good using Behavioural Economics seminar, and discusses how and why arts organisations should be looking to use these techniques in their fundraising. The accompanying book is now available, find out more, join the book tour and buy your copy […]

Read more
5 questions for your training provider

Thinking about investing in arts fundraising training? 5 tough questions to ask your supplier before deciding

It’s never been more important to invest in skills and knowledge about private fundraising in the arts. These are tough times. The arts council faces more pressures than ever, lottery income is falling, we are leaving the EU and its cultural investment, LAs are withdrawing from arts support and even competing for funds up as […]

Read more
Brain cubed

Myth No 5: The rational case for the arts drives donations

In the final part of the #5Myths of Arts & Culture Fundraising blog series by National Arts Fundraising School Director Bernard Ross, he touches on the use of behavioural economics in fundraising. There’s been a massive growth in desire to justify the social or economic impact of the arts and culture. (And to prove the […]

Read more
Generation Y

Myth No 4: Millennials are mean (or millennials are magnanimous…)

Part 4 of #5Myths of arts & culture fundraising from National Arts Fundraising School Director Bernard Ross. ‘Millennials’ – or Generation Y – is a general term for a demographic that includes anyone born from early 1980s to mid 1990s – a number of whom are now turning 30 or even closing on 40. There’s […]

Read more

Myth No 3: Crowdfunding will solve the cash crisis

Third blog in the series of arts & culture fundraising Myths (#5Myths) by Bernard Ross. This time, crowdfunding… The headlines and hashtags leap out – mostly from social media, and especially Twitter – with claims that crowdfunding will replace or massively supplant ‘conventional’ fundraising. These headlines and claims offer hope, often to small organisations, about […]

Read more
Wolf of Wall street 2

Myth 2: The rich will save us all

Introducing the second blog from the 5 myths of arts & culture fundraising series (#5Myths) by Bernard Ross.  Even as the corporate myth slowly starts to fade it’s been replaced by another – if slight – variant. Rising over the crest of the hill, see the new Knight in Shining Armour astride a unicorn – Sir […]

Read more
Unicorns dont exist

Give up on the Unicorn! 5 Fundraising Myths for Arts and Culture…

Bernard Ross, =mc & National Arts Fundraising School Director and fundraising expert speaks out on 5 fundraising myths in arts & culture that you need to address… Here’s a challenging graph. With some challenging information. And challenging implications. The question is, what do we do about the loss of public support since it’s unlikely that […]

Read more
Bernard Ross Director

Stop ‘asking donors for money’ right now

=mc Director Bernard Ross bucks against the latest fundraising trend… and with good reason. Sometimes I feel like I’ve been transported back into the arts and culture world of the 1970s. To be honest it’s not all bad. I mean I could live with the bad hair, the purple nylon velour loon pants, and even […]

Read more
Roxie Keon & Dominic Haddock

Day five at the National Arts Fundraising School

After a late night preparing their pitches, NAFS participants are up early on this bright and sunny day in Alfriston to do their Corporate Pitch task. Everyone is looking super smart and ready to pitch to a company for anywhere up to £50,000 – and have six minutes to do so, with their fellow delegates […]

Read more
Dr. Claire Routley

Day four at the National Arts Fundraising School

Read more
The Influential Fundraiser

Day three at the National Arts Fundraising School

Something that strikes me about the way the course is structured and designed is how it enables us all, both staff and participants, to reflect on our learning so far and share experiences, thoughts, reservations, dreams and ideas with each other over the (delicious) meals. The power of peer learning is one of the secrets […]

Read more
The NAFS Mug

Day two at the National Arts Fundraising School

Our session about how to develop relationships with Trusts seems particularly relevant this week, as the Garfield Weston Foundation announce their new strategy – including providing supportive materials for applicants on how to submit a good proposal, and good finances. Trusts are increasingly supporting applicants to make the best of their application – it’s up […]

Read more
Dana Segal

Day one at the National Arts Fundraising School

Dana Segal, =mc’s newest Partner Consultant and co-leader of The National Arts Fundraising School offers up the first instalment of her daily blog.

Read more
Bernard Ross Director

Crowdfunding, Gift Horses and their Dental Work

National Arts Fundraising School Founder-Director Bernard Ross looks at Crowdfunding, and explains why all may not be as it seems… I was recently sent an interesting report on crowdfunding by a participant on the National Arts Fundraising School – and specifically a scheme that’s been successfully run in Plymouth. At first the results look really impressive […]

Read more

Our next programme runs 10 - 15 November 2019

2019 price: £2149 + VAT.
We even have a money-back guarantee!