Daniel Tiger and Major Gifts

I wish I paid more attention to Mr. Rogers when he was alive.  The older I get, the more I find myself in awe of the man.

Call him a visionary, a quiet voice of reason, or the most sensible person in the room.  Fred was all of those.

A few weeks ago a very smart, intelligent guy asked me, “Did you ever see Fred Rogers’ testimony to Congress?  It helped save public television.”

6 minutes.  I beg you to read the article and watch the clip.  It will be the single best thing you do today. https://bit.ly/2v91e2i

Fred Rogers died in 2003.  Gratefully, his work lives today, on PBS, in the form of a children’s show called “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.”  We figure out pretty quickly that Daniel Tiger assumes the persona of Fred Rogers, which is just fine.

Each show has a theme which you can’t miss because it is repeated maybe ten times in the course of the 30 minute broadcast.

My grandchildren are mesmerized by Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.

One day, Daniel Tiger is having a tough time learning how to catch a ball and he is pretty down in the dumps about it.  Another character, a somewhat older boy, comes to the rescue and in the course of teaching the skill to Daniel Tiger the boy shares the theme:

“If you can’t quite do it, just practice.  Believe you can do it.  Keep practicing.  The more you practice, the easier it gets.  The easier it gets, the better you are at it.  The better you are at it, the more fun it becomes.”

 That’s major gift fundraising in a nutshell.  We can make it more complicated if you want, and often we do, but pretty much all we need to know we can learn from Daniel Tiger.

Have a good day, my friends.

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