We have just come out of a year that was both as challenging and rewarding as the Foundation has seen in recent times. Thanks to the generous contributions of our CMC community, we experienced a dramatic increase in charitable donations, resulting in an equally dramatic increase in our ability to support CMC’s healing ministry and its drive for continued excellence in research, education, and patient-related services.
Through our fundraising and friend-raising efforts in 2021, we received a record number of charitable gifts and gifts-in-kind, transfer more than $2.7 million to CMC – representing a $1.2 million increase over the prior year’s activities. This transfer of charitable funds to Vellore supported CMC’s COVID relief efforts, student scholarships, community outreach activities, purchase of medical technology for the neonatal ICU and simulation laboratory, as well as many other healthcare activities.
Sadly, there is no doubt that the second wave of the Pandemic in India contributed significantly to the extraordinary increase in donations during the year. However, important to note is that there has been a concerted effort to reengage the faith-based community, with the underlying goal of deepening the collaboration between CMC and its U.S. Christian partners of varied denominations. The outcome of this donor cultivation effort was the receipt of nearly $1.2 million from the U.S. faith-based community. Putting this into perspective, there has been a 2,400% increase in charitable revenue received (from the church community) as compared to the end of 2018, when we first began our outreach to this known loyal group of donors.
As part of the Foundation’s ongoing donor cultivation efforts, in 2021 we enhanced our communications strategy, which now incorporates (1) a social media presence on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter, (2) the publication of a quarterly digital newsletter, (3) the launch of Passages, a new biannual faith-based community digital newsletter, (4) the triannual publication of our Voices of Vellore newsletter, and (5) the design and layout of our Annual Report (which incorporated ten 20-minute interview videos with some of CMC’s most prominent alumni).
In June of 2021, the Foundation launched a new initiative to help CMC and its research community solicit grant funding from U.S.-based grantmaking organizations. As part of this effort, we organized a kick-off event in September and brought together ‘thought leaders’ (from within CMC’s scientific faculty and alumni network) to validate the need for this development effort, and to provide the Foundation with guidance regarding how best to interact with CMC’s research community and the U.S. donor community. I am eternally grateful to each of the Foundation’s board and CMC’s faculty members for the generosity of their time and expert advice. Their dedication and commitment have paved the way for a bright vision for 2022 and beyond.
To summarize, the Foundation is making great strides in its efforts to (1) increase public awareness and serve as CMC’s global ambassador, (2) deepen its relationships with CMC’s leadership, faculty, students, and alumni, (3) cultivate donor relationships that result in raising charitable funds in support of CMC and the Foundation itself, and (4) gain the public’s trust through its responsible stewardship and governance.
The Foundation has experienced exponential growth over the course of the past three years, resulting in more than a 400% increase in annual charitable contributions. We look forward to building on this momentum as we continue to serve and support CMC’s healing ministry.