Need a Fundraising Letter Template? Here’s a Great One, as Well as Helpful Writing Tips

Need a Fundraising Letter Template? Here’s a Great One, as Well as Helpful Writing Tips

Are you looking for a way to help your nonprofit reach its fundraising goals? Writing an effective and persuasive fundraising letter is essential to getting the donations you need. But, creating a successful fundraising letter can be daunting for those unfamiliar with the process (and even for seasoned fundraisers!)

Don’t worry! We’ve gathered our top fundraising letter tips and put together a customizable template so that you can craft a compelling fundraising letter without the headache. With our helpful advice, you’ll take a big step forward in achieving your fundraising goals — well-written letter in hand!

What is a fundraising donation letter?

Fundraising letters (or procurement letters) are written to ask for donations. They provide recipients with information about the nonprofit organization and encourage them to give — usually money or items for a fundraising event. Items include things like gift baskets, ticket packages, and gift certificates that might be used in an auction, raffle, or giveaway. You can use fundraising letters to reach out to various potential donors, including individuals, corporations, and foundations. 

These letters should include contact information, a concise introduction to your organization, details about how donations will be used, and a call to action that encourages people to donate. 


Tips for writing the best fundraising letter

When crafting your letter, there are a few key elements to remember that will help you create an effective and persuasive fundraising appeal. 

Start with a story: Stories are a powerful way to engage your audience and draw them in. Start your fundraising letter by sharing a brief, emotionally moving story or highlighting an inspiring example of how donations have helped your organization reach its goals. 

Personalize your letter: Tailoring your letter to the recipient can help you create a stronger connection with potential donors. Showing that you’ve taken the time to research and personalize your message will demonstrate your appreciation for their support. Greet them by name and include a short personal message.

Address the problem:  Fundraising letters are an opportunity to demonstrate the need for support and shed light on the issue your organization is working to solve. 

Keep it concise: Fundraising letters should be succinct and to the point. Keep your message concise, and include only the most necessary information. Make every word count! Readers appreciate when a letter is transparent and direct and are more likely to give when you are straightforward in your appeal for donations. 

Use a conversational tone: Fundraising letters should be friendly, warm, and approachable. Avoid using overly formal language or long-winded sentences. 

Focus on the human connection: Using pronouns such as “we” and “you”  is a great way to create a personal connection with the reader and draw them in.

Include a call-to-action: A successful fundraising letter should have a clear call-to-action that encourages people to take the next step. Encourage donors to act quickly by giving them a deadline or conveying a sense of urgency. 

Include your mission: Fundraising letters should always briefly overview your organization and its mission. This can be accomplished in just a sentence or two. Remember, keep it short and sweet.

Utilize multimedia components: Including valuable visuals, such as photos, videos, or infographics, can help to engage your audience further and make your letter more impactful. You can even use images effectively in print letters. Carefully consider the print design to help achieve maximum impact. 

Provide clear instructions for donating: If you are asking for an item, clarify how you would like to receive it. If you are asking for a donation, provide information about how to donate and direct them to your fundraising page to make it as easy as possible for donors to contribute. Each donation page built with MaxGiving also includes a built-in form for donation items, allowing donors to enter any pertinent information online. Include a paper donation form if sending the letter by mail. 

Say thank you: Fundraising letters should always include a thank-you or appreciation section near the end of the letter. Showing appreciation for donations will encourage people to donate again in the future. 

Be specific: Be clear about what you are asking for. For instance, do you want monetary donations, tickets, gift certificates, or a sponsorship? Make it straightforward, so there’s no confusion on the donor’s end. You should also let donors know that recognition at your event is part of their large donations. Be specific about what this recognition will look like at different donation levels. 

Make it look professional:  Fundraising letters should be polished and professional. Carefully inspect your draft to ensure all spelling, grammar, and formatting are correct. It should also have your organization’s logo and branding front and center to increase trust with the recipient. Conclude with a hand-written signature for a print letter or upload an image of a signature for an email appeal. 

Fundraising letter example

Once you have a handle on what to include in your letter, it’s time to put pen to paper. Here is an example of a fundraising letter for an animal shelter that you can use as a starting point: 

Dear John Smith, 

I am writing to ask for your help in supporting our mission at Humane Animal Rescue. Our organization is dedicated to rescuing and rehoming homeless animals in our community. Through generous donations, we have been able to save over 5,000 animals, but hundreds are sent to the pound each month, where they are euthanized after just seven days. 

We are planning a fundraising auction event on March 1st to help us raise $100,000 towards a  bigger and better animal shelter. Your donation of a gift certificate from John’s Family Pizza will help us achieve our goal and make a difference in the lives of homeless pets around the community. 

Any amount you can give would be greatly appreciated and will go directly toward helping us reach our goal. Visit our fundraising website at to arrange your donation. Thank you for considering this request and for your continued support of Humane Animal Rescue. 


Jane Doe

Humane Animal Rescue Fundraising Team 

P.S. Our fundraising auction event is Saturday, March 1st at 4pm at the Human Animal Rescue event hall. We look forward to seeing you there!

Free fundraising letter template

Ready to get started? Use our customizable fundraising letter template as a stepping stone to writing your own fundraising letter. All you need to do is fill in the blanks with relevant information about your organization and cause. You’ll have a persuasive and professional fundraising letter ready in no time! 

Dear John Smith, 

I am writing to ask for your help in supporting our mission at {ORGANIZATION NAME}. Our organization is dedicated to {BRIEFLY EXPLAIN YOUR MISSION}. Through generous donations, we have been able to {EXPLAIN WHAT YOUR ORGANIZATION HAS ACCOMPLISHED AND UTILIZE AN EMOTIONAL APPEAL, IF POSSIBLE}, but {SHARE HOW THE NEED IS STILL THERE}. 

We are planning a {GIVE DETAILS ABOUT YOUR EVENT} to help us raise XXX to {STATE WHAT THIS AMOUNT WILL ACCOMPLISH}. Your donation of {INSERT THE DESIRED DONATION} will help us achieve our goal and make a difference in {REITERATE YOUR MISSION}. 

Any amount you can give would be greatly appreciated and will go directly toward helping us reach our goal. You can donate online at {INSERT LINK TO YOUR FUNDRAISING PAGE}, call us at {INCLUDE IF YOUR ORGANIZATION HAS A DONATION LINE} or send a check in the prepaid envelope included in this letter. Thank you for considering this request and for your continued support of {ORGANIZATION NAME}.






How should you send a fundraising letter?

Now that you have a fundraising letter drafted, let’s discuss how to get it into the hands of potential donors. Fundraising letters can be sent through snail mail or email, depending on your goals and budget. If you are going for the extra personal touch. People often pay more attention to physical letters but may put off donating if it’s not a simple process. 

For those who want to reach many potential donors quickly, email is the way to go. With email, you will be able to include a direct link to your fundraising page so that people can easily donate online. Online giving is quickly becoming the main way that people donate! This will allow donors to learn more about your cause and easily access your donation portal when they are ready to give. With the MaxGiving event fundraising software, you can send a mass email to donors from previous events — saving you time and effort. 

Connect and compel

Fundraising letters are a great way to connect with people and share your cause in an engaging and compelling way. At MaxGiving, we understand the hard work that goes into fundraising efforts. That’s why we have designed our event fundraising software with you in mind. Our software simplifies sending out fundraising letters and setting up a donation page so that you can raise more, stress less. Contact us to find out how we can help.

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