Tuesday, April 5, 2016 - 12:03
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Girls on the Run's mission is to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum. Teams are paired with coaches who teach valuable life skills over a 24-lesson curriculum that culminates with a 5K run at the end of each season. Every 5K event requires the registration and coordination of thousands of team coaches and over 800 volunteers. Also, as part of sharing their strengths with the community, each Girls on the Run team plans and implements a community service project, which allows them to discover the unimaginable strength that comes from helping others.

With so many volunteers and activities, Girls on the Run St. Louis had a few big questions to solve:

  1. How could they migrate their data away from DonorPerfect, a CRM that was becoming increasingly cumbersome and cost prohibitive the larger their organization grew?

  2. How could they integrate their donation, volunteer and event forms into their website to provide a more seamless user experience for their constituents?

  3. How could they free up their volunteers’ and coaches’ time to spend more time helping the organization with its mission?

  4. How could they gain better insights into volunteer and donor activities with a centralized database?

Girls on the Run St. Louis turned to Spry Digital for help. Right away, Spry Digital understood that GOTRSTL needed a robust, open-source constituent management system. One that would centralize their data to provide better insights into the activities of thousands of volunteers and donors. One that would not increase in cost based on the number of records they added. One that could be integrated with their front-end website, provide forms and make it easier for site visitors to donate. Spry Digital recommended CiviCRM to solve for all of these concerns and more. After evaluating numerous solutions, GOTRSTL decided on CiviCRM due to its flexibility and cost. As Maggie Siemers, Operations Director, puts it, “The price was very enticing.”

Spry Digital implemented CiviCRM in two phases between 2013 and 2014. While work was underway to plan Girls on the Run St. Louis’ new website, Spry Digital setup CiviCRM (with Drupal) as a standalone application and began migrating their content. Instantly, GOTRSTL saw the benefits of having a central database and began improving efficiencies within the organization while gaining insights into their donor and volunteers activities.

With their data and activity tracking now in CiviCRM, Spry Digital designed and developed an entirely new website, using Drupal 7 with CiviCRM powering donations, events, and volunteer registration and management.


With an integrated Drupal/CiviCRM solution and seamless user experience, the organization saw vast improvements to their fundraising and volunteer management efforts. Girls on the Run St. Louis were able to streamline operational efficiencies while growing the number of volunteers and coaches that they could effectively manage.

Over the next few years, Girls on the Run witnessed the extraordinary payoff using CiviCRM:

  • Between 2013 and 2014 (before the launch of the new public website, using CiviCRM only) GOTRSTL increased donations by 46%

  • Between 2014 and 2015 (with a new website with integrated Drupal/CiviCRM solution) they saw their overall donations increase by 106% with a revenue increase of 64%

  • By Fall, 2015, GOTRSTL managed the memberships of 935 coaches followed by 1352 in the Spring of 2016

  • GOTRSTL is now managing 2000 coaches and 800 volunteers for every 5K race

  • An overall increase in donations and grants of 70% since implementing CiviCRM

Girls on the Run St. Louis continue to explore and test the features of CiviCRM to see how they can make better use of the platform while they continue to grow their organization. CiviCRM has allowed GOTRSTL to grow with improved processes and better insights while limiting their operational costs.