NABS launches national effort to raise $200k

Until the end of the year, the industry will have a range of options to help the non-profit face its pandemic fundraising challenges.

With the struggles face by individuals and companies in marketing and advertising, NABS’ services may be needed now more than ever, but like many non-profits and charities, the pandemic has had a major impact on its ability to fundraise through conventional means.

That’s why, beginning this week, the non-profit – which aids individuals in the media, marketing and communications industries when they’re faced with mental health, critical illness, financial and other job-related challenges – is launching a national campaign effort to raise $200,000 by year’s end.

NABS will be running several activities nationally, in parallel with several local efforts geared towards the advertising and marketing communities in Vancouver and Montreal. 

Cross country efforts include the NABS Marketplace, an auction portals for items donated by industry professionals, launching with a focus on artwork. Pieces will be auctioned during the last two weeks of October and last two weeks of November.

In addition, the regular NABS Month efforts have has been extended beyond October and to the end of the year, giving people a greater window to donate through  internal employee fundraising efforts at companies and agencies, and companies matching funds raised by their staff. There are also “non-cost” options for individuals and companies who are feeling financial pressures right now, such as participating in the NABS media program, promoting the marketplace and other efforts within their social networks or helping to set up monthly giving plans within their office.

In Vancouver, NABS will be running virtual speed mentoring sessions, as well as a virtual version of its Oktoberfest celebration. In Montreal, there will be a “BEC Boutique” (a version of the marketplace selling products geared towards those in Quebec) as well as an “Atelier” concept, where industry creatives submit their own graphic design concepts, with the winners being printed and applied to items like mugs and shirts, which will be sold with proceeds going to NABS.

NABS has been taking on more virtual events to help supplement the inability to do its usual in-person fundraising events, but Jay Bertram, executive director of NABS, says it’s not sufficient. The pandemic has been devastating to nonprofits across the board, due to donors facing their own financial struggles and those that are able to donate prioritizing things like food banks and other relief efforts. The Health Charities Coalition of Canada, the umbrella group of national health charities such as the Canadian Cancer Society, Crohn’s and Colitis Canada, Heart & Stroke and others that often host major public fundraising events like charity walks and runs, report that revenues have fallen more than 50% since the pandemic began. 

“While we are actively pivoting to move more of our events to a virtual format, and new ways to raise funds for our charity, the numbers speak for themselves,” Bertram says, adding that uncertainty related to COVID-19 will continue well into 2021. He says the organization needs to raise $200,000 “to ensure critical programs and services” can continue in a time when they seem to be needed more than ever – NABS has already served a record number of people in 2020, and the numbers continue to grow.

“While we all handled the realities of COVID inside our agencies in our own way, everyone agreed on one thing – the importance of investing in NABS and putting our people first,” says Tyler Turnbull, CEO of FCB North America and one of several agency leaders that have pledged their support to NABS’ cause. “We need to support one another in any way we can and NABS has proven day in and day out that they are the top organization in the country to do just that.”