There are many ways your organization can meet its needs without having to ask for actual monetary gifts. Try one of these creative ways to get what you need the next time your organization is in need of goods or services!
If you're holding a fundraising drive and you need to provide food for your volunteers, approach a local restaurateur about the possibility of donating a meal. Many restaurant owners look at this as a means of marketing their business, and can more easily justify the marketing expense than a monetary donation.
Invitations can be expensive, but they're necessary when your holding a special event fundraiser. Why not contact a local printer and ask if the company would be willing to donate the printing for your invitations. Many printers are willing to provide such services, especially if they are allowed to mention the fact that their company provided the invitations on the actual document.
If you need to provide computer training for your employees or the consumers your organization serves, instead of asking for money to pay for classes, contact a local training facility in your area and see if the company would be willing to donate classes to you. A training provider with open seats in a scheduled class is often willing to make them available to charitable organizations free, or at a greatly reduced price.
Providing clothing to consumers served can be a very expensive proposition for charitable organizations. When the cold winter months approach, it can be very important to make winter coats available to people who need them. Instead of trying to raise money to purchase new coats that can cost hundreds of dollars each, hold a coat donation drive, encouraging community members to donate their gently used coats to your cause.
These are just a few of the many ways you an use creativity to come up with non-traditional means of getting the things your organization needs to meet its needs. While raising money is important, don't lose sight of the fact that there is a large donor pool made up of individuals much more likely to give you "things" than money.