KaBOOM! is a national nonprofit dedicated to giving all kids—particularly those growing up in low-income communities in America—the childhood they deserve, filled with balanced and active play, so they can thrive. Established in 1996, KaBOOM! is firmly committed to the principle that playgrounds build social cohesion, a sense of community and neighborhood safety.

In mid-2017, KaBOOM! embarked on a bold new partnership with the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) to build 250+ new playgrounds within public housing communities in the city over the next five years. KaBOOM! had projected that it would need to raise more than $80 million to achieve its donor cultivation goal, and selected Orr Group as its fundraising campaign partner.

Orr Group’s work included refining KaBOOM!’s case for support, developing a pipeline of major donor prospects for the NYCHA Partnership Initiative, and testing the revised case in interviews with key donor prospects to gauge their interest in supporting the Initiative. Based on input from the interview process, we developed a roadmap for raising the needed funds, including recommendations on:

  • Adjusting the case for support based on donor feedback
  • Top donor prospects for the fundraising campaign with recommended ask amounts, donor cultivation strategies, next steps for those prospects interviewed about the case for support, and tactics for identifying additional prospects
  • A gift pyramid for the NYCHA Partnership Initiative
  • Donor cultivation, stewardship and recognition strategies for both individuals and foundations
  • Recommendations for Board engagement
  • Staffing and systems recommendations, including reporting procedures and tools to ensure accurate and effective tracking of progress against goals, and a project timeline and budget.

Orr Group also provided an embedded major gifts team focused on working the prospect pipeline. Over the six-month duration of the project, the team identified, qualified and began to design solicitation strategies for 169 major gift and foundation prospects. The first playground build (illustrated) took place only two months into the project and provided a significant impetus to the cultivation and solicitation program.

Over six months, the Orr Group team identified, qualified and began to design solicitation strategies for 169 major gift and foundation prospects.