A capital campaign is an intensive effort to raise a significant amount of money in a relatively short period of time to fund a major capital project. The most common type of capital campaign is a campaign to finance a new building or significant addition to the present facility.
Although everyone is invited to participate in a capital campaign, a congregation’s member families may likely be in different life stages. Some families may have income to give, but few assets, and are able to give some amount each month. Other families may not have much income, but might have significant assets, and are able to give a lump sum now.
Congregations typically request commitments in both forms, that is, how much can you give today, and how much each month for the duration of the campaign.
Mission Funding has material available for congregations wishing to undertake this process. Please call 1 (800) 884-7526 or send an e-mail to missionfunding@CofChrist.org to request this information.
Phases of a Capital Campaign
Capital campaigns usually involve the following steps:
1. Planning Phase
1.1 Plan all aspects of the campaign thoroughly with the consensus of the mission center financial officer and the building committee and pastoral team.
1.2 Select the capital campaign committee and committee chair from a broad-based pool of respected persons in the congregation.
1.3 Project the cost of the project and build a funding plan consisting of cash on hand, assets to be sold and pledges over a specific number of years. Be sure to carefully consider the impact that the debt repayment will have on future programming ministries.
1.4 Insure the project scope is within the financial means of the membership.
1.5 Develop a purpose statement making the vision clear to the members: use artist’s drawings, brochures, information sheets, etc.
1.6 Provide adequate time between the presentation and commitment phase for questions and clarification.
1.7 Train those who will go on visits, and allow them to commit first so their visits take on a “testimonial” nature.
2. Commitment Phase
2.1 Define the campaign time frame and stick to it.
2.2 Be creative in your presentation and consensus building. Make sure that committing to this project “feels” different from a steward’s regular giving to the congregation.
2.3 Visit key members of the congregation (pastorate, steering committee, those who will conduct family visits, and other key contributors) first.
2.4 Make sure every member is personally invited to commit to the project.
2.5 Include children with their families.
2.6 Communicate and celebrate your progress as the campaign unfolds.
3. Follow-up Phase
3.1 Acknowledge every gift.
3.2 Follow up regularly with the people of the congregation to inform them of the progress of construction and contributions.
3.3 Follow up with every member periodically regarding the status of his or her commitment.