Managing a Multifaceted Membership Structure with CiviCRM

The Women's Fund of Santa Barbara (WFSB) is a collective donor group that enables women to combine their charitable donations into significant grants focused on the critical needs of women, children and families in Santa Barbara, California.

The Women’s Fund has a multifaceted membership structure based on donation amounts in order to designate correct voting privileges to members, whether the donation is made by an individual or by a group.  Each membership group has a captain who is in charge of contacting those in their group to encourage membership donations. The Women’s Fund researched different systems and ultimately chose CiviCRM after receiving advice from others in the community. They selected Cividesk as their service provider to assist with the implementation, provide training and monthly customer support.

Cividesk staff spent quite a bit of time discussing the membership structure with the Women’s Fund to fully understand how it could be properly recorded and tracked in CiviCRM.  Because the Women’s Fund doesn’t track membership dues, but rather donation amounts, Cividesk developed a custom program to accurately store the membership data and record the corresponding contributions.  As part of the set-up process, Cividesk provided initial trainings and weekly mentoring sessions for several months to answer any questions.  

The Women’s Fund has over 650 members (individuals, group members or both) and conducts a contribution growth campaign each year to encourage existing members to increase their renewal contributions.  They now can easily access data on how many members have taken the campaign and from which groups thanks to CiviCRM.  

Accepting online credit card payments is another huge benefit for the organization.  Since the integration of a payment processor with CiviCRM, they have seen a significant increase in the number of credit card payments as compared to checks and EFT.  The Women’s Fund is preparing to send out membership renewal reminders through CiviCRM and knows this will help facilitate that task, “using CiviCRM has allowed the organization to focus on their real objective of getting new members rather than spending hours on administrative tasks”.   

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