During my last webinar on how to thank and recognize your donors, I had a few special requests from our viewers to provide examples of some thank you letters to send to donors. I’ve also included some notes after the first sample to help you understand what key points to hit when you are getting ready to write your next thank you letter.
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Sample Thank You Letter 1
Dear [First Name],
Thanks to you, Felicia is busy planning her future.
This year she’ll be graduating from St. Joseph’s University—the first in her family to graduate college. She’s applied to nine medical schools, with plans to become a pediatrician. In 2001, when Felicia began the [XYZ] program, thoughts of becoming a doctor had never entered her head.
Her parents had arrived in the United States from Jamaica. “They’ve supported me in everything I’ve ever wanted to do,” she says, “but they’ve never been to college.”
Your gift of [$X] has helped to buy the books, pay the teachers’ stipends, and grow our summer programming so kids like Felicia have a chance.
We look forward to sharing the program’s success with you in our quarterly newsletter. In the meantime, if you would like to schedule a visit to see firsthand the difference your gift is making, please contact [Mary Development at 555.555.5555].
Our sincere thanks for your support throughout the years.
Board Member, President
Notes About the Example
There are many great ideas from this example to keep in mind when writing your thank you letters.
- First, the letter starts out with a strong opening focusing on the donor: “Thanks to you…”
- Second, it shares a story and tells the reader exactly what you’ll be doing with their donation.
- Third, the letter tells the reader when they can expect to hear from you, and offers a phone number and a contact person for their convenience.
- Fourth, the donor’s loyalty is acknowledged.
- Finally, it’s signed by someone from the highest ranks of the organization.
As a finishing touch, we enclosed a thank you letter directly from one of our students. During a rainy summer day, we gave the kids the project of writing thank you notes to all the people who made their opportunity possible. Then we compiled their handwritten notes and printed the best ones.