Genevieve Shaw Brown, an ABC News Travel & Lifestyle Editor, covered the story of 9-year-old Hailey Fort’s mission to help her homeless ‘friends’ by growing produce and building personal shelters for them. Genevieve is an award-winning journalist and ABC News travel & lifestyle editor. ABC News is a leading source for breaking national and world news.
9-Year-Old Girl Building Personal Homeless Shelters for Her ‘Friends’
By Genevieve Shaw Brown | ABC News | 6/4/15
When Hailey Fort was just 5 years old, she spotted a homeless man in Kitsap County, Washington where she lives. She asked her mom whether she could help him.
She plans to build 12 mobile shelters this year. The recipient of the first shelter, Hailey’s mom Miranda Fort told ABC News, is a man named Edward. “She [Hailey] went through all of her homeless friends and made the decision based on a number of things. This shelter doesn’t have a place for a wheelchair, so it wasn’t a good fit for Billy Ray. Similarly, it wasn’t a good fit for her friend Tonka, a dog, and his owner. Edward stuck out because he has always been so gracious when receiving food.”
At the age of 5, Hailey Fort saw a need in her community and has spent the last 4 years of her life developing a way to fill those needs. She started a garden where she grows produce to share, and recently completed the first of a dozen mobile shelters she plans to make this year.
So how does a 9-year-old decide which of her homeless ‘friends’ get this shelter?
Segmentation strategy based on needs compared to features of the shelter. Her shelter is not big enough for a wheelchair or companion animal, which ruled out several people immediately. After narrowing down homeless candidates, one person stuck out to her as the perfect match. Hailey’s approach to matching shelters to recipients is a simplified version of how your organization can go about reaching out to supporters.
Donor segmentation strategy allows you to break down and communicate with groups of supporters in a way that specifically fits their preferences towards communication, donation channels and the kinds of support they want to provide. Would they rather donate, crowdfund or volunteer their time? Should you email the Baby Boomers, but text message your Millennial supporters? The categories and groups in which you divide your supporters are limitless. You can choose what works best for your organization and then how to best reach each group.
Create and Implement Your Own Segmentation Strategy
Start by segmenting donors by generational preferences and giving traits. From there, you can continue to form new contact lists within your database as part of your supporter communication plan.
The more you get to know your donors, the more personal, valuable and effective your correspondence and their experience with your organization will become.