|Pam Aks |
On February 14th, 2018, a school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School forever changed the Parkland, Florida community. The tragic event prompted a flood of fundraising for several related causes, including gun control and mental health advocacy, as well as funds raised to support the families of the Parkland shooting victims. In the same vein, the founders of Parkland Cares acted quickly to begin raising money for the families affected by the shooting and creating grants for non-profit mental health organizations in Broward County, but their focus is beyond short-term needs.
“When a crisis hits, everybody wants to help right away. But then the media coverage fades, and who’s left to nurture long-term solutions? That’s where Parkland Cares is different,” explains Pam Aks, Director of Operations at Parkland Cares.
Parkland Cares is unique in its independence and long-term dedication. Administrative fees are covered by a large corporate donor, so every cent donated to Parkland Cares goes straight to families and organizations to help those affected by the Parkland shooting. Parkland Cares is here for as long as services are needed.
No nonprofit could have planned ahead of time for the February shooting in Parkland, so moving quickly to meet the needs of the community was of the utmost importance to Parkland Cares. They needed a fundraising software that would deliver results in both the short and long term.
Aks says that after the incident, there were many people and organizations that came to the aid of the community. “Everyone wanted to help. There were so many different organizations hosting many types of events and it was imperative that Parkland Cares found a way to stand out.”
To build awareness for their short and long term missions and start immediately collecting donations, Parkland Cares needed an online fundraising software that was user-friendly, versatile, and included the customer support they needed to get up and running quickly.
Arreva’s Online Fundraising was the perfect fit for Parkland Cares’ urgent needs. Once the general forms were set up, Aks found that everything was seamless. She notes that on the CRM side, she can easily pull information about donors and which events they have attended, highlighting that it “gives [her] a plethora of information right at [her] fingertips.”
The thing that really helped Parkland Cares establish their online presence and ability to accept online donations was Arreva’s customer support, which Aks describes as “bar-none excellent.” With the guidance of the Customer Support Department at Arreva, Aks can build the forms, event pages, and donation pages that Parkland Cares needs and finds that the software has been “very intuitive, very easy, very friendly to use.”
Aks was especially delighted with the automatic thank you notes that Parkland Cares donors receive. She views it as the personal and financial responsibility of the organization to reach out and thank their many donors, and Arreva’s software automates that essential process.
Overall, Arreva’s Online Fundraising is providing ease of use, phenomenal customer service, and the complete package to Parkland Cares, allowing them to maintain their stability and keep giving to the Parkland community.
“We recently awarded $75,000 dollars to three organizations in our community that have been here since day one of the incident and will continue offering services, and we are doing another round of grants in the beginning of next year. The dollars come in and with Arreva’s help, we’ve been able to capture those dollars and give them to those organizations because we have a consistent, easy, and very intuitive tracking system.”
As a Florida business with direct ties to the Parkland community, Arreva is proud to be part of the Parkland Cares mission, which is best described in the words of Pam Aks: “We are here for the long run to provide dollars to those organizations that are here doing the work; and for as long as the work is needed we’ll continue to raise the money and fund those organizations.”
When asked what she would say to nonprofits looking at Arreva’s software, Aks states, “I would absolutely recommend Arreva and I would highlight the ease of use, the phenomenal customer service, and the complete package. Everything is seamless, and it’s a great complement to the software that the service team is just as great.”
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