So you want to nominate a non-profit?

One of the great aspects of Thank You Ma'am is that we, the membership, get to nominate our favorite local non-profits. Each quarter members have the opportunity to put their name in a "hat" to be selected to pitch their non-profit. Up to 4 are selected, and each presenter gets up to 5 minutes to make her case for her non-profit.


There are some guidelines about which non-profits can be nominated.

1. The non-profit must have 501(c)3 status.

2. It must be a local non-profit directly serving Reno and the surrounding area.


Do you have a non-profit you want to nominate? Follow these simple steps and get ready to make your pitch!

1. Practice your "elevator speech." You should be able to explain the mission of your non-profit in a minute or less, as if you were describing it to a stranger on an elevator ride. 

2. Know your numbers. What are the relevant numbers potential donors need to know? For example, what is the need of the non-profit? Is it to purchase supplies, operating costs, a special project? Talk about how the money will be utilized. 

3. What's the heart story? Do you have a personal experience with this non-profit or a story that paints a picture about how this non-profit has helped someone in the community? Appeal to the hearts in the room.


Selling your non-profit in a brief  5 minutes takes some planning. Consider the following points to include in your presentation:

  • Introduce yourself and the organization you are nominating.
  • Start with an opening line designed to grab the audience's attention.  For example, "An estimated 30% of children in Reno do not get enough to eat every day."
  • Describe the mission of the organization. If applicable, also describe the program you are seeking funding for.
  • Explain how the money will be used.
  • Share the importance of the organization about the positive impact on the community. Conversely, what will the community miss out on without this non-profit or program?
  • How does the organization measure it's success? How can we be sure the money will be well utilized?
  • Anything else you feel is important about this organization and what it provides the community.
  • End with a heartfelt ask and a thank you.