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Steps to Starting Your Own Project

If you are considering a building project as a possible funding option, follow these steps:

1. Please pray that this is the Lord's direction for your local ministry.

2. Since there are several options concerning how these building projects can be accomplished, please contact Dave Davies, Vice President of Planned Giving, or Ken Williams, Executive Vice President, at the FCA Home Office to discuss possibilities. Please take this step prior to moving forward with any plans. It is important for you to fully understand your options.

3. Be sure that your leadership board is behind the effort, and that this is part of a comprehensive funding plan for your ministry.

Advice from the field:

FCA Regional Director Todd Knutson on…

Starting a building project in your area:
It’s really important to look at who is on your state boards and your leadership team; that’s the first thing you do. Look at your support network and see what they do for a living. You look at their contacts. Are they involved in real estate or the construction trade? 

When you begin to identify who you have on your leadership team and state boards, and you throw this idea out to them, they’re going to be excited about it; they’re going to help you with it. There are tax advantages for donors that are involved in projects like this, in terms of donations of materials. You cannot write off a donation of labor, but you can write off a donation of materials. That makes sense to a lot of people.

But, I don’t recommend this for everybody, it’s not for everybody; but as I looked around my region and where our strengths were, amazingly it fell into place that we had a lot of contacts with people that were involved in the construction industry. Not everybody has that, but this region did. 

 And once you utilize that, it’s amazing what can happen. All of a sudden you can look at all the different dimensions that go along with a house (i.e. mortgage, furniture, appliances). And you can start going to those different individuals and as for donations. So, what you try to do is separate the house from other houses on the market, and give people incentive to buy this house. They’re going to get a lot more for their money, and they’re going to get a quality home. 

The cool thing about this project has been the fact that you can get a lot of people that are not necessarily familiar with FCA involved in it. It’s a great way for a lot of different people to help out.

Marketing your FCA house:
There’s a host of ways that you can market the project. We’ve used news letters to market people’s involvement, and we’ve done news releases to local media to create awareness. 

So, for example, in Rochester (Minn.) the local media did a live remote from the house. Television stations were invited to come and do a story on it. The local newspaper can give you thank-you ads for the involvement of different people in the project. 

There are some subcontractors that don’t want their names mentioned, but if you do it right, most of them are happy to be mentioned. But you’re always cognizant of the fact that people might be fearful that if they donate one time, they’re going to have 15 different non-profits knocking on their door. So that’s why it’s always important to ask if it’s OK that you market their involvement. And most of them are very receptive to that.


FCA Area Representative (Minn.) Tony Votaw on…

Beginning to raise support for local FCA ministry:
I’ve been on staff a few months now. And my biggest concern with raising support is finding the right people and asking God for direction. It’s very important that the relationships we build in FCA are not just one-time things. We build relationships over a series of years, and it’s our relationships with those parents and kids that we work with for years that help us with our ministry in the long run.

So, I presented the FCA story to a family that I’ve been friends with for 20-some years. And the father and son are distributors for portable septic tanks. They’re athletes and they like sports and were willing to give the proceeds for one unit of their product, which is about $4,200. They decided to do that twice a year, once at the beginning of the year and once at the end. The father and son are great Christian people, and they just want to give back. They said that by doing this the fruits are going to pay off because it’s helping other kids. 

The important part is that I didn’t come to them and ask for money. I was there to get their prayer support because I know that they are prayer warriors. Those are the kind of guys that I want to surround myself with to try to get this started.


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