News & updates from North American YMCA Development Organization    June 2020

June 5, 2020
A Catalyst for Change

“We’re all in this together” is the phrase we keep hearing as the world deals with the economic hardship and health challenges of the current pandemic. NAYDO believes the same phrase should be applied to the quest for justice and social equality so eloquently shared in the words below by Y-USA’s President and CEO Kevin Washington.

In this era of social distancing required for health and safety, may we not distance ourselves from the other challenges facing our society and instead redouble our efforts in our Y work and in our personal lives to listen, to learn, to take action, and to come back stronger and better not just from the coronavirus but from the virus of hate, of prejudice and injustice that we have witnessed throughout our lives in the United States and around the world. 

Shelly McTighe-Rippengale, NAYDO Council Chair

Mary ZollerNAYDO Operations and Conference Director

My Perspective on What's Happening in Our Country
By Kevin Washington, YMCA OF THE USA President and CEO

Dear YMCA Colleagues:
I hope you and your loved ones are safe from the violence and destruction gripping so many of our communities.
I am really struggling to process what is happening in our country right now – in part because I have experienced it all before.
In the summer of 1967, I was 13 years old, a boy coming of age in South Philadelphia. What I saw outside my front door and on my TV screen is seared into my memory: black people, taking to the streets in urban areas … New York, Detroit, Chicago, Los Angeles, Oakland … as part of the Civil Rights Movement to protest racism, violence against people of color and a discriminatory justice system, and to call for equity in the form of voting rights and access to jobs, affordable housing and a quality education.
Those memories came rushing back to me during the past week, as I watched the sickening video of the needless brutality that killed George Floyd, and the protests that followed in Minneapolis and other communities across the country in his name, as well as the names of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and the many African Americans – some whose names are widely known, most whose are not – who came before them and whose potential will never be realized, lost to our communities forever.
I understand the pain that comes with feeling invisible, unheard and undervalued, and the intense desire to make a statement and get people’s attention. I am outraged by those who have exploited peaceful protests for their own gain, resorting to looting and destruction.
As I have watched all this unfold, I’ve asked myself: What really has changed for people of color in this country during the past 50 years?
Not enough. Not nearly enough.
But I have noticed at least one very important, very encouraging difference as I’ve tried to make sense of what I’m witnessing and find the right words to express what I’m feeling: It’s not just black people marching for equity and justice, condemning police brutality, calling for an end to systemic racism and saying Black Lives Matter. They are joined by allies of all races and ethnicities – representative of the great diversity of our nation – and most of them are young people.
So, while I am sad, frustrated, angry and scared, I am not hopeless.
The challenges we face as a nation related to racial equity and justice are significant and growing, with roots that go as deep as our nation’s founding, but they are not beyond the power and determination of young people. I am convinced of that.
This current generation of young people is not only the largest generation in our nation’s history, but also the most diverse. They value diversity, inclusion and equity and care deeply about the welfare of others.
They are the changemakers we need for the communities we want – communities where all people, no matter who they are or where they come from or what their current circumstances, get the support they need, when they need it, to reach their full potential.
They also are our future federal and state legislators, mayors, corporate and nonprofit leaders, educators, health care providers and police officers. And they’re not going to stand for the status quo. They’re not going to stand for the world that’s being left to them. They’re not going to stand for anything less than the future they want.
We all should be grateful to them for that. They are cause for hope.
Reading the thoughts, prayers and reflections of Y colleagues – both those I know personally and those I don’t but with whom I share a devotion to this great organization – these past few days has been uplifting and inspiring to me.
They’re damn mad, they’re worried and they’re distraught. But they’re also resilient, energized and committed to creating real change.
All of us in the Y must understand that we’re part of the solution, individually and collectively. We should stand up and speak out for equity and justice. This is a pressing community need, and the Y always has responded to pressing community needs.
In fact, a group of Y CEOs have issued a powerful statement of solidarity. I encourage you to express your support, as I have.
We all are grappling with the big, bold actions required to turn the tide in our country, and that’s important. But I don’t want us to forget that as an inclusive organization committed to partnering with young people and giving them the support they need to act on what’s important to them, there is so much the Y can do right now – even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. As I have seen YMCAs demonstrate repeatedly during the past few months, we still can unite people and inspire positive action to fill gaps and address disparities in communities, despite not always being together physically.
This is a time of great anguish and despair in our country, particularly for people of color and the most vulnerable among us. We cannot let all this suffering be in vain. It must drive us toward a better tomorrow.
I know the Y has the credibility and capacity to lead. We must be guided by the light of our organizational commitment to inclusion and our focus on young people. We must go forward with a fire in our souls and hope in our hearts. We must work together to create the future we all want and deserve.

June 2, 2020


Message from the NAYDO Chair

Dear NAYDO Members, 
The past months – and recent weeks – have been crazy and chaotic. Focusing on work, we've made it to June. For the YMCA of San Diego County, that means our thoughts turn to summer camp, outdoor exercise opportunities (once the Governor gives us the green light), and Ys refilled with the sounds of kids and summer fun. I’m hopeful your Y is beginning to see more activity as well.

Once again, I am choosing to be optimistic. That’s one characteristic I love about Y staff and volunteers. We are hopeful, positive and seek the good in all situations. Here’s a reason to be optimistic: a new NAYDO partnership with DBD Group that offers an opportunity for YMCAs and NAYDO to finish strong in 2020: DBD Virtual Annual Giving Academy.
With fewer financial development team members and less time for strategic planning or implementing new tactics, I am on board with the virtual academy! It’s an investment with a trusted partner and has the potential for a high ROI.
The DBD Virtual Giving Academy offers a six-month financial development plan and toolkit to help you tell your new story, steward donors, and ask for support. With a focus on major gifts, annual giving, and radical stewardship, you will receive monthly step-by-step guides, templates, samples, Q&A sessions, and more, all beginning July 1.
Here are three additional reasons I believe this is a great opportunity at just the right time:
1. With their breadth and depth of YMCA experience and expertise, DBD Group team members bring credibility, reputation, in-depth knowledge, and trust to this partnership. They know what you are experiencing and have tailored the materials for immediate use. Virtual Academy content is consistent with NAYDO education and is endorsed by NAYDO.
2. It provides a sounding board for prioritizing my fundraising needs and includes peer support and resource sharing, two valued outcomes of all NAYDO learning.
3. Participation in the DBD Virtual Annual Giving Academy supports NAYDO. DBD Group is generously donating a percentage of every registration to NAYDO. Simply, DBD Group has a heart for NAYDO!
DBD Group President and Founder Bruce Berglund, CFRE received NAYDO’s Eagle Award for Excellence in Fundraising, served as a NAYDO Conference Chair and also on NAYDO Council. Robyn Furness-Fallin, CFRE, DBD senior consultant, served as NAYDO Chair and is a recipient of the Eagle Award. Jan Brogdon, CFRE, DBD senior consultant, served on NAYDO Council, chaired NAYDO’s Young Professionals program, and remains a valued YP mentor. So many of the DBD Team have been active and supportive of NAYDO over the years, it just makes sense to take another step together to serve locals Ys.

Learn More

Check out the details of the DBD Virtual Annual Giving Academy, including pricing ($300/month for six months per association). Download the overview.
Join an upcoming June 11, 16 or 19 Q&A session.
Watch this short video (01:39).
Contact DBD Group for additional information.

Because of licensing and tax regulations, only YMCAs in the U.S. are eligible for this first Virtual Academy. If cost is a barrier, please contact Kristen Obaranec, NAYDO year-round learning coordinator, to explore options to cover the cost.  
Knowing I can get through the next six months with friends and colleagues, I am feeling even more optimistic. I hope you’ll join me in supporting this NAYDO/YMCA/DBD Group opportunity to finish strong in 2020.

Shelly McTighe-Rippengale
YMCA of San Diego County
Senior Vice President & Chief Development Officer
NAYDO Council Chair

Yours in Y service,

Monthly Webinar sponsored by Daxko - Marketing & Communications
Thursday, June 18, 1:30 p.m. Central

Communicating with Donors During Uncertain Times
Presenter: Lynne Wester, Donor Relations Guru

These past few months have been unsettling to say the least. In some ways, they are allowing us to lay bare and question everything we do. Foremost among those are the communications we are sharing with our donors. Our communications need to be more thoughtful than ever and based on the needs of your donors, those you serve, and your community, more than the needs of your Y’s ability to operate.

Join Donor Relations Guru Lynne Wester in this webinar to learn how to strategize and execute crisis communications, whether it be for one donor or thousands. We will cover the necessary items for recovering, and then thriving, during these uncertain times. As a community, we will study what works and what doesn’t. You will leave this webinar with concrete next steps and answers to your questions to better serve your donors.


Thank you, Daxko, sponsor of the NAYDO Webinar Series. 


New Jersey YMCA implements fundraising lessons learned at NAYDO

By Samuel Frisby, CEO of the Capital Area YMCA

The Capital Area YMCA is a small Y (<$4M) but has been growing steadily over the past five years. We serve Trenton, New Jersey, and are meeting vital needs in our economically challenged urban center. More than 85% of students are eligible to receive free or reduced lunches.

When schools closed in March because of the coronavirus, our team knew that hungry children in our community would still need to eat. Within four days, our Y was distributing 250 daily meals at 14 city parks, with the need growing by 75-100 kids every few days. Today, we are serving 2,700 meals, which is 19% of the city’s school-age population.

We began an essential service fundraising campaign and contributions have gone through the roof. Much of the campaign’s success is the result of putting into practice what I learned at the past two NAYDO conferences in New Orleans and Indianapolis.

During week one of our emergency campaign, two Y partners/funders contributed $60K. Since March 31, we have raised more than $162,000 because the community sees and hears what we are doing – and how successful we are in our efforts. A food insecurity segment with the Y’s response aired on New Jersey Spotlight. An anonymous donor was moved to give $25,000 after seeing us helping other people.

We are a better Y because of NAYDO’s support and encouragement. I feel strongly we are better stewards of the Y because of NAYDO, and we will leave the organization in a better state than we found it. I am grateful for the knowledge I’ve gained at NAYDO, along with the tools to implement our campaign and tell our amazing story.

The most important knowledge I received was how to tell our Y story. We are shining a light on what we are doing. People can see how passionate we are and the impact of the work. Videos, social media, online giving, our website, and word of mouth steer people to our purpose.

In a more recent victory, our local city government announced a $180K grant to the Y to develop meals for families, using local restaurants, over the summer. These funds are coming from a Community Development Block Grant. The city came to the Y after hearing of our success. The Y is seen as a needed, valuable resource that is helping to fill the gap.

Watch the NJ Spotlight/NJTV segment

NAYDO 2021 
Imagining Conferences - Part 1 of an eDevelopments Series

By Mary Zoller, NAYDO Operations and Conference Director


It is hard when in survival mode to think about the future but when you are ready please take a moment to read this article and imagine that we will be able to meet in person for NAYDO 2021. Normally at this time of year our  NAYDO Conference Committee would be in the final stages of designing NAYDO 2021 but, just like so many things, NAYDO 2021 planning is “on pause” while our committee members who all represent local Ys are dealing with various stages of being closed, offering limited services, re-opening and reimagining their Y’s future.

As NAYDO’s Conference Director, this “planning pause” has given me the opportunity to research, learn and think about what NAYDO 2021 might be like. What you are about to read is a compilation of what I have observed in other organizations, researched in the meeting and travel industries, brainstormed within NAYDO circles or simply thought of and not shared out loud. New meeting industry standards combined with CDC and local guidelines will provide the answers in the end but for now, there are no answers but there are some trends evolving. This article is only meant to provide some insights and ideas regarding our 2021 conference and perhaps inspire some thoughts about your Y’s future events.


In other words, do not interpret information in this article as facts or decisions already made but rather possibilities to be explored with these exceptions:


NAYDO has a contract for the dates of April 14-17 at America’s Center in St. Louis, contracted room blocks at 3 hotels: Hyatt at the Arch ($199 per night); Embassy Suites ($205 per night) and Marriott Grand ($215 per night) and a host Y - the Gateway Region YMCA – eager to welcome you to St. Louis. NOTE: Among NAYDO’s cost-saving steps was the elimination of the 2021 conference brochure in print version.  It will be replaced with a digital 2021 brochure and website updates as things progress but stay tuned for emails about when hotel reservations and conference registration will open and the schedule and pricing are finalized.


The Travel Issue

Health and safety is priority one in new ways. Dr. Michael Ambrose, founder and CEO of CampDoc and longtime NAYDO sponsor and exhibitor, is serving as NAYDO’s advance and onsite medical advisor.  Airlines, public transit, hotels and all event venues are implementing internal sanitizing and social distancing steps which they are eager to publicize so assuming it becomes safer to travel…what other factors might get in the way? What if that no travel policy your board enacted in March 2020 remains in effect? What if you are considered high risk for health or age reasons?


A hybrid conference that combines an in-person experience with a virtual conference is gaining the attention of meeting planners. For either financial or health reasons 2021 might be the year you sign up for a virtual version of the conference which will be part of the plan from the beginning.  For those who anticipate being ready and eager to travel, the in-person conference experience will look a bit different but if at the last minute you cannot attend  you will have automatic access to the virtual version. Remember air travel is not the only option for travel. Whether or not you previously thought of St. Louis as driving distance, you might want to consider driving.


This word has taken on new meaning. There is financial capacity and venue capacity. Will your Y have the financial capacity for you to participate in training? Some things to remember…your Y may have credits from unused plane tickets to NAYDO 2020 so check on the date by which they need to be used. Hotel rates are less expensive this year. Financial assistance awarded for NAYDO 2020 will be honored for NAYDO 2021 though amounts might be adjusted to reflect different 2021 costs. Each Y that had conference financial assistance in effect on March 1, 2020, will receive a statement this summer with the exact amount of your 2021 award.


Currently, venue capacities have been reduced so overall registration spaces may be limited.

Venues are scrambling to figure out new seating configurations and pathways for moving people while practicing social distancing. It is likely those new capacities will keep changing (hopefully increasing) but let’s assume that the capacities are less than what we are used to.  That potentially means fewer people at one time simultaneously doing anything.


General Session Meals

Because NAYDO 2021 is in a convention center, not a hotel, we have a huge hall for General Sessions so tables can be easily spread out. No gathering at the entrance doors eagerly awaiting them to open. Think about an assigned table and seat and a recommended time to enter. Likely gone are the days of squeezing through a myriad of table rounds so closely placed to each other that even wait staff have challenges moving through. Stopping for a quick chat with old friends on your way to your table won’t be up close and personal. You may be following a marking on the floor keeping you distanced from others as you make your way to your assigned table.  Maybe a new Association Membership benefit is those Association Member Ys get to pick their tables. If the safest way to enjoy larger group gatherings is to remain with the same small group throughout, sitting with the same people in the same seat for each General Session sounds like a possibility. When it is time to leave, no mass exodus. Picture leaving the room when your table number is called.



There is no need to rush out of General Sessions because signing up for workshops in advance (never something NAYDO required) may be a new feature since reduced capacities for workshops will be in effect as well. The Workshop Host at the one door designated for entry manages how many attendees enter at a time and dismisses them in small groups at the end. So what options do we have to deal with smaller capacities for workshops? Repeating the same workshop more than once ( that would be new for NAYDO), offering different patterns so some attendees do workshops while others explore exhibits and then they switch, workshops are live-streamed, fewer workshops offered creating larger capacities for each one or expand into outdoor spaces.



And what about exhibits (a revenue stream) being reduced? Imagine every other booth space intentionally empty and one direction to walk through while staying 6 feet from exhibitors. I can just picture company reps wearing gloves tossing wrapped giveaways to attendees as they pass by. Forget the rectangular tables normally used; perhaps every exhibitor has a table round to keep you just the right "viewing distance" away from the onsite reps. Appointment times are required to get an up-close demo with a masked company rep one on one. Any signage will have to be in larger print so you can see it while being further away with more digital and fewer print pieces available. The mobile app may include exhibitor handouts as well as presenter handouts.


Food and Beverage Receptions and Snacks

Those food functions from continental breakfast to receptions in the exhibit area designed for interaction might look a bit different. I doubt any type of buffet where you serve yourself using a utensil will happen. Instead, a masked and gloved employee will serve you and you will be picking up individually wrapped items. Picture a wrapped apple or finger sandwiches in a container and expect a package of tortilla chips and an individual container of salsa instead of big bowls where you serve yourself the amount you want.


Plan Now for 2021
Our very popular Hot Topics table group discussions provide an interesting challenge, so I will save that and other components for a future edition of Imagining Conferences. I leave you with one more thought – NAYDO 2021 will happen whether you experience it virtually in your home or local Y office or travel to St. Louis, so keep it in your vision of 2021 experiences. Watch for conference details as they become available. Maybe (in my dreams) a vaccine will be ready and widely available before April 2021 and life will be closer to what it was and these ideas will be unnecessary. If you have any suggestions or comments on ideas in this article, or would like to add your name to the Planning Committee, I would love to hear from you at 504 464 7845 or The NAYDO Office has never closed and our small staff team and NAYDO Council are intact and working. The world is different but NAYDO’s commitment to helping YMCAs strengthen philanthropic support remains unchanged. Stay NAYDO Strong!

Your NAYDO Membership Dues

The NAYDO Council consists of representatives of local YMCAs and the national movements that comprise the Philanthropy Alliance. When the NAYDO Conference was canceled in March and local Ys closed, NAYDO temporarily stopped sending membership dues invoices, knowing that everyone was faced with unprecedented challenges.
To support the Y movement, NAYDO opened up its webinars to all YMCAs to increase the likelihood that more YMCAs will come back strong acknowledging that philanthropy is a significant part of recovery.

All NAYDO memberships have been “paused” while the NAYDO Council explores the best membership structure, pricing and payment plans going forward. NAYDO Members will be informed of any changes BEFORE membership dues billing begins again. Feel free to contact the NAYDO Office with any questions or suggestions at or 504 464 7845.

NAYDO is Conducting a Benchmark Survey
NAYDO is partnering with one of our exhibitors, Gabriel Group, to conduct a benchmark survey on the impact of COVID-19 on YMCA Associations. The association-level results, which will be shared in general and will not identify staff or YMCAs, may be helpful as you forecast for year end 2020 and budget for 2021. The findings will help NAYDO in designing upcoming events and content. If you receive the survey, thank you in advance for helping to estimate the impact of the coronavirus on your YMCA in 2020. The results will be discussed and distributed later this summer. 

Trust in Nonprofits Rises as Confidence in Government Covid Response Slides
The Chronicle of Philanthropy article, 6.4.2020

Forecasting Fundraising Revenue in 2020
This Blog from Fundraising Well provides a forecasting model for individual, foundation, and corporate giving. 

Should you hold your special event?
Start with the end in mind, ask the right questions, evaluate. Bonus: a fundraising strategies matrix. From Claire Alexrad and Bloomerang

Virtual Reality: Making an Online Fundraiser Connect with Donors 
Case study that inlcude 8 tips for online events and a webinar. From Upaya Social Ventures, Seattle

Legacy Fundraising During a Pandemic (or Whatever Else is Happening)
Do's and Don'ts from Ligia Peña, CFRE, Global Legacy Manager of Greenpeace International and living in Montreal. Ligia was scheduled to be a 2020 NAYDO  conference presenter and is a former YMCA of Quebec staff member.

The Virus Made Us Do It
To Succeed with Organizational Change, Avoid These 5 Myths 

Career planning
Earn your CFRE
If you have some extra time, take action now for your personal and professional development.
July 15 is the next CFRE application deadline. NAYDO members receive a discounted certification fee.

THANK YOU to our NAYDO Sponsors & Exhibitors 

Special messages from sponsors for staying with NAYDO
The last eDevelopments listed 2020 conference sponsors and exhibitors that rolled their fees over to 2021. Here are two more. As a thank you for sticking with us, they were offered this opportunity to connect with you. 
Gabriel Group

We look forward to coming back together. We are resilient. We are NAYDO STRONG.

eDevelopments Disclaimer
Unless they are NAYDO members, sponsors or exhibitors, the websites, consultants or other resources cited in these articles and links are not endorsed by NAYDO. The information is provided as food for thought only!

Have an accomplishment or inspirational Y story to share? Contact Kristen Obaranec.