Year-End Giving Letter

What is a year-end giving letter?

A year-end giving letter, also known as an end-of-year donation letter, is a fundraising appeal sent during the last few months of the year, sometimes called the “season of giving.” It’s not to be confused with a donation acknowledgment letter which you send to donors, oftentimes at the end of the year, to give documentation of their charitable gifts and donations for tax purposes.

Header image for how to write a donor acknowledgment letter
Read our step-by-step guide to writing a donation acknowledgment letter

Year-end giving letters can be sent through direct mail, email, postcard, video, and other methods of communication.

End-of-year donation letters are an important part of any successful year-end giving campaign. Nonprofits use them to solicit end of year donations from supporters during the holiday season–a time when many people are looking to give to nonprofit organizations. Like any effective annual appeal letter, year-end donation requests should work to reiterate your mission, boost donor engagement, and ultimately increase revenue.

Year-end giving letters also take advantage of the biggest giving days of the year, December 30 and 31. Based on data from Kindful, the average single gift amount grows by 62% and 49% on December 30 and December 31. The same days also produce 567% and 1,212% more revenue than non-giving days. Surprisingly, they even produce more revenue than Giving Tuesday.

Chart with data that shows biggest giving days compared to Giving Tuesday

Read more about the biggest giving days of the year.

Sample End-of-Year Donation Letters

charity: water

charity: water uses a simple email as their end-of-year appeal, though it could also easily be printed and sent through direct mail. They keep their mission at the forefront by using a graphic that illustrates their mission of bringing clean water to those in need. They also play on supporters’ desire to give gifts during the holiday season.

charity: water example of year end giving letter

Soddo Christian Hospital

Soddo Christian Hospital’s end-of-year donation email expresses a sense of urgency by including a countdown inside. They make it clear who will be receiving the donations and they include a donation button, making contributing as simple as possible for donors.

example of end of year donation letter from soddo

Oregon Family Support Center

Oregon Family Support Center highlights all the way they serve the people of Oregon in their end-of-year donation email. They also mention their end-of-year fundraising goal, as well as ways supporters can get involved in carrying out their mission.

sample year end giving letter from oregon family support center

Bottom Line

Donors love contributing to meaningful initiatives–especially around the end of the year. Sending a year-end giving letter can encourage them to support your organization on the biggest giving days of the year.

Free Ebook: Ending 2020 Well

ending 2020 well ebook cover
Organizations that have the tools in place to easily accept donations online, run virtual events, and participate in online fundraising campaigns have been able to take advantage of this unique year. In this ebook, we’ll help you set a strong fundraising foundation that will leave you feeling confident in your virtual fundraising abilities. We’ll also share insights from nonprofits so you can learn from real-life situations.

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