Cradles to Crayons (C2C) was founded in 2002, with the mission of providing children from birth through age 12, living in homeless or low-income situations, with the essential items they need to thrive - at home, at school and at play. C2C is at the cutting edge of volunteer management and has become the largest volunteer opportunity in the Boston area (where the organization is headquartered) providing unique, hands-on opportunities for people to help other people.
How Our Model Works: Cradles to Crayons collects new and nearly new children's items through grassroots community drives and corporate donations. Donations are then processed and packaged by volunteers, and are distributed to disadvantaged children through a collaborative network of social service agencies and school partners. C2C supplies these items free of charge by engaging and connecting communities that have with communities that need.
Cradles to Crayons meets a critical need as many children 12 years old and younger live in poverty-stricken situations. Their living conditions can have negative effects on their self-esteem as poverty can lead to behavioral, social and emotional problems; their education as half of these children start 1st grade up to 2 years later than their peers; and their safety as they may live in more hazardous environments that can increase the risk of injury.
While meeting the immediate needs of low-income children, Cradles to Crayons also sets a foundation for lasting change by providing meaningful, tangible volunteer opportunities to thousands of individuals and families and hundreds of corporations each year by organizing clothing collections, hosting a fundraiser, or working in The Giving Factory warehouse.
Cradles to Crayons earned the highest possible rating from Charity Navigator for the eighth consecutive year. Only 2% of charities rated have received at least eight consecutive 4-star evaluations, differentiating C2C from its peers and indicating that C2C outperforms most other charities in America.
Reporting to the Vice President of Development, the Director of Major Gifts manages the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of individual/family gifts with the goal of broadening the family philanthropy platform and, in particular in collaboration with the Vice President of Development to help increase the number of major gifts ($10,000+). The primary focus of this position is to manage and provide support for the Family Advisory Council and to supervise the Family Philanthropy Associate and Family Philanthropy Coordinator in their work, particularly with the Family Leadership Circle and Teen Leadership Corps respectively. This includes relationship management with current donors and families, as well as acquiring new families and donors to support C2C’s mission. The position manages an organization-wide engagement strategy to form cross-team collaboration to support the overall mission. It involves working closely with the Operations team, Community Engagement team, both in the Giving Factory and with families in targeted communities. Additionally, this position supervises the Development Operations Coordinator and is responsible for ensuring the overall integrity of our donor database and a seamless working relationship with the Finance Department.
The successful Director of Major Gifts will demonstrate excellent written and verbal communication skills, is comfortable being a spokesperson for the organization and collaborates effectively when working with both internal and external constituencies.
This is not a typical Monday through Friday position. It is a full-time position with some built-in flexibility because it often requires weekend and evening work to support family engagement events. The Manager should expect to attend an average of one weekend shift per month in the Giving Factory, and is expected to attend all Family Days (8-10 per year on weekends), Teen Leadership Corps orientation and leadership development days, and Family Engagement events (usually held in the evening) including MEGA Night.
Model and lead a positive “One Cradles” culture, underpinned by Cradles’ Cultural Values and related behaviors
Serve as a member of the Development Team to meet annual fundraising goals.
Build strategic framework and develop materials to meet Cradles to Crayons family/ individual engagement goals in the areas of income, product acquisition, volunteer warehouse time and new relationships.
Collaborate with the Vice President of Development to assure that stewardship efforts (Moves Management Approach) serves as effective pipeline to support major gifts goals ($10K + ).
Actively manage a portfolio of individual/family donors in the $1,000 - $14,999 range.
Implementing an annual giving strategy for our $500-$999 donors.
Actively engage, steward and manage existing Family Advisory Council and Family Leadership Circle members to maximize potential.
Contribute to new business development efforts by identifying and engaging prospective individual and family donors through proactive outreach, leveraging C2C’s family engagement platform and warehouse visits.
Effectively steward the Un-Gala event committee, our signature fundraising event for individuals and families, and serve as the department lead for event planning and management.
Manage family cultivation events (Family Volunteer Days, MEGA Night, etc.) with support from other Development Department team members and the Special Events Coordinator.
Management of the Family Advisory Council to ensure group functions effectively and supports the needs of the Development Team and the major gifts goals of the Vice President of Development. Provide exceptional customer service to group members.
Collaborate with the Vice President of Development in leading cross-functional team to create a holistic approach to family relationships and our ability to maximize funding, in-kind product and volunteerism.
Provide excellent customer service by responding in a timely manner to emails and phone calls.
Manage the Family Philanthropy Associate, the Family Philanthropy Coordinator and the Development Operations Coordinator.
Work collaboratively with the Marketing team to create program collateral, deliver general solicitations, and share stories via social media and email communications (highlighting key supporters and impact, and advertise events.)
Help meet C2C product collection goals by:
Working with the Operations Team to identify most-needed items and target specific families to help meet those needs
Stay up-to-date on warehouse guidelines, changes, and policies
Be trained and able to lead volunteers in at least one station in the Giving Factory
Identify families who can support our Giving Corps with Teen Leaders or Champion volunteers
Attend C2C signature events and contribute to other departmental and organizational goals and activities as needed.
Model and lead a positive “One Cradles” culture, underpinned by Cradles’ Cultural Values and related behaviors.
Establish and meet aggressive fundraising objectives to reach the annual operating and capacity need of C2C through family/individual philanthropy.
Demonstrate ability to work with the Vice President of Development, generating new business and stewarding donors toward major gift level for cultivation by the Vice President of Development.
Increase and renew existing donor commitments.
Create and use Salesforce reports to track progress toward goals.
Demonstrate ability to build, manage and inspire others toward common departmental and organizational goals, particularly in supervisory role for the Family Philanthropy Associate, Family Philanthropy Coordinator, and Development Operations Coordinator positions.
Demonstrate ability to work collaboratively and cooperatively with other C2C staff, including counterparts at other Cradles’ sites.
Uphold high quality of customer service with all C2C stakeholders.
Bachelor’s degree; degree in Communications, English, Journalism, or Political Science preferred.
Five years of professional experience in development, experience in Greater Boston philanthropic community preferred.
Experience managing and growing affinity groups and donor circles preferred.
One to two years in a supervisory role.
Planning, managing and implementing fundraising events.
Superior writing and editing skills and an extensive understanding of English grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
Working knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite, proficiency in SalesForce or a CRM system such as Raiser’s Edge and research tools such as Foundation Directory or GrantStation.
Strong interpersonal skills, ability to work with a wide range of people and self-confidence to outreach to all levels of external audiences.
Experience participating in teams with shared responsibility for outcomes and decision-making while demonstrating outstanding interpersonal communication skills and a flexible, adaptable work style.
Resourceful and entrepreneurial with the flexibility to work in fast-paced environment and with individuals with different work styles.
Excellent ability to prioritize and organize with strong attention to detail.
Knowledge and understanding of relevant social issues.
Basic understanding of budgets and financial statements.
Team player; demonstrate a positive and supportive attitude and willingness to work closely with C2C team at all levels.
Demonstrate initiative, self-motivation, and the ability to absorb new information rapidly.
Project management experience, including managing multiple projects at one time.
Strong commitment to Cradles to Crayons’ mission.
Ability to think creatively and strategically as well as adapt to changing circumstances.
Cradles to Crayons (C2C) was founded in 2002, with the mission of providing children from birth through age 12, living in homeless or low-income situations, with the essential items they need to thrive - at home, at school and at play. C2C is at the cutting edge of volunteer management, and through its “Giving Factory” provides unique, hands-on opportunities for people to help other people. Headquartered in Boston, MA, C2C opened in Philadelphia in 2007 and in Chicago in 2016.