The Winston-Salem State University Friends of the Library, a fundraising arm of the school’s C.G. O’Kelly Library, is postponing its annual fall fundraiser so that it won’t conflict with a major upcoming sporting event.
The event is normally held during the second weekend of November, but this year at that time, the red-hot WSSU Rams played the Fayetteville State University. Dr. Mae L. Rodney, director of O’Kelly and head of library services, said that holding the fundraiser last Saturday (Nov. 9), would have meant that the event would have had to compete for the same supporters. She said the postponement will also give FOL the opportunity to explore more effective fundraising techniques that will increase revenue in an economic climate where dollars are scarce and the competition among nonprofits is fierce.
“Even the largest and most successful organizations, from time to time, must step back and assess their purpose and mission and their annual activities,” said Rodney. “Since it was necessary for us to take a short break from our annual fall fundraising event because the football season conflicted with our usual date, we decided to postpone it until the spring. Meanwhile, we’re going to take a closer look at how we can maximize our fundraising efforts. The nonprofit market is flooded with individuals and groups promoting causes and we have to figure out more effective ways to inform our supporters about the benefits of O’Kelly.”
Rodney said that FOL’s planning committee reviewed many points while deliberating its fundraising future, including considering holding the fundraising event, which has been held annually for the last 20 years, every other year.
“That adjustment will not impact the mission to keep the Winston-Salem community and WSSU alumni informed about O’Kelly Library projects and services,” Rodney said.
The funds from past events, which have included a dinner, entertainment and informative presentations about the library, support a graduate assistant position at O’Kelly and the O’K Scholars Institute, a program for faculty. Funds were also used to cover unexpected library expenses.
FOL plans to announce in January the date, time and location for the rescheduled spring fundraiser.
“The Friends of the Library is very appreciative of everyone who responded in a positive way to our summer 2013 newsletter. We also appreciate our friends who called to inquire about our postponed November event. Thank you for your continued support and stay tuned for more information,” Rodney said.