Contact (formerly Contact a Family) is the leading UK-wide organisation providing expert advice, information and support to families of disabled children. In August 2014, Contact was in critical uncertainty over the future of its funding with £2.8 million (54% of revenue) due to end within ten months. Contracts that had traditionally been renewed on a rolling basis were now subject to a competitive tendering process, requiring new levels of specialist skill. Cuts of contract value between 20% and 30% also meant that much of this funding would have to be replaced from alternative sources. During August/September 2014, the fundraising team went through a consultation and restructure to become better positioned to meet its urgent target of £2.8m, however this led to senior vacancies in the short term.
KEDA Consulting put together a team of consultants to provide strategic advice, bid writing, team management, prospect research and support in implementing a programme of change in how departments work together to develop new projects and funding bids. With KEDA’s managerial support and direct involvement in fundraising, over £4.5m was secured within just seven months, including £3.2m against its 2015/16 target of £2.8m. Alongside meeting the immediate funding needs of Contact, we also supported longer term development needs. Permanent staff received mentoring, where needed, to improve bid writing skills and account management practices. Wider organisational practices around service planning, budgeting and full cost recovery were explored with finance, operations and senior management to identify actions for increasing fundraising efficiency and success. KEDA supported recruitment to ensure a strong team of permanent fundraisers to drive forward Contact’s fundraising success.