La Junta

By Marisol Fornoni

As a fundraiser, most organizations are interested in talking to ‘big money’ guys, including banks and large government grant-making organizations. The assumption is that if these organizations decide to fund your project, you are set for the duration of your program.

By doing this we tend to place all our fundraising efforts into one basket, hoping that if we just get that big grant we’ll be living the non-profit dream. Unfortunately, I often see this go wrong. Competition is high out here and as everyone continues applying to the same small pools of money in Toronto, it’s really time for us to start exploring new ways of fundraising.

Depending on the objectives and activities of your organization, perhaps the Junta system can work for your group.

Juntas are used in Latin America to raise large sums of money, and are often used as a grassroots savings model. My grandmother personally uses it and it works great for our family.

The model is simple. The Junta consists of a group of members, who monthly give a fixed set of money to the Junta. Each month, it is a members turn to collect the money. If a member has an emergency they can also request a collection. Members of the Junta are through this able to access higher rates of capital while operating in caring and trusting communal environments.

Through the Junta process of consultation many local Juntas have been successful in resolving key local issues in their communities, as well as financially contributing to worthy social causes. Take some time to think about how this model can work for you and use this example to creatively brainstorm about the ways you can propel your initiative forward with relying on traditional means of fundraising.

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