Year-End Appeal: How to Write a Giving Letter

Year-End Appeal: How to Write a Giving Letter

December 12, 2018 by

Year-End Appeal TemplateThe year-end appeal is a standard in the nonprofit world. People are thinking about giving and it’s a prime time to ask people to donate. Is your church making a year-end appeal? 

We’ve got a Year-End Appeal Template you can use to make that last-minute ask a little easier. We’ve got tips for how to approach a donation letter and a pre-written template to show you how it’s done.

We didn’t write the letter for you—it’s not that easy—but the template approach should make it a lot less intimidating. Especially when your task list is already overflowing.

Grab the free template to get started, but if we could give you some quick advice right now, make sure you keep these things in mind:

  • Be specific: People want to give to concrete, tangible things. Be specific. How will the money be spent? What difference will it make? How much do you need. Be specific—we can’t say it enough.
  • The mission: Any giving appeal should be tied to your church’s mission. No matter what the money is for, make that connection to mission. And if it’s too tenuous of a connection, why are you asking for money for something that’s not part of your mission?
  • Show gratitude: You’re  asking people to give money. Say thank you.
  • Be brief: Keep your letter to a single page. That’s tough and it requires ruthless editing, but that’s what’s necessary. People are busy and their eyes will gloss over with a long letter. You can also use bold text and bulleted lists to make the letter more scannable.
  • Make the ask: Nobody will give unless you ask. You need to specifically ask for money. Don’t be vague. Don’t beat around the bush. Come out and ask for it: We need $10,000 for a new roof.


Need more? Check out our Courageous Storytellers resources on giving:

  • A video with lessons about money from a church planter.
  • An ebook about giving kiosks.
  • All things capital campaign: mistakes to avoid, reasons to not run a campaign, and sample print materials.
  • All things annual report, too: a ready-for-you template (just drop in your logo, data, and photos), samples, and a checklist of information to include.
  • Suggestions for improving the offering time during your worship experience, including an idea for every week of the year and language to use (and avoid).
  • Helpful tips for your website giving page, strategies for improving online giving participation, and a comparison chart of online giving providers.

Super-practical resources to help you get it done. Join Courageous Storytellers now to get access.

Post By:

Kevin D. Hendricks

When Kevin isn't busy as the editor of Church Marketing Sucks, he runs his own writing and editing company, Monkey Outta Nowhere. Kevin has been blogging since 1998, runs the hyperlocal site West St. Paul Reader, and has published several books, including 137 Books in One Year: How to Fall in Love With Reading, The Stephanies and all of our church communication books.
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