The Mikuska Group  

In a world where everyone gets enough

Do you have enough? What does having enough mean?

Having enough means you can participate in society with dignity. Those that don’t have enough have to rely on the charity of others. And that can take away their dignity.

Think about those who don’t have enough – they’re panhandling for food, visiting a food bank to pick up a few canned goods, sleeping at the shelter or on the street, and looking for donated clothing and shoes. Their Employment and Income Assistance (EIA) cheques aren’t enough to have enough to eat, find adequate and safe housing or buy warm clothes. And it’s even worse for those that have to provide for their children or those with a disability that prevents them from participating in the workforce. Most are deeply ashamed.

Now let’s think about providing everyone with a basic guaranteed income. Instead of panhandling, they’re going to the grocery store and buying the food their family needs. They’re clothing their family and finding safe and affordable housing. They’re going to school. ¬†All without having to rely on the charity of others. They’re participating in society and contributing to the economy. With dignity.

We need to take care of our citizens, so everyone¬†can realize their hopes and dreams. Canada is a caring country and we’ll all be richer for it.

Laura Mikuska


Ask how to communicate with donors

I recently made a donation in memoriam to honour a friend who had passed away. I made it to an organization that I wouldn’t ordinarily support as I have little interest in their mission, but because the family had asked for donations for that organization, I honoured their wishes.

Imagine my surprise when the very next day, I received their email newsletter! I haven’t even received a receipt, yet they feel they know me sufficiently to further communicate with me. Plus the e-news has three separate asks to give, give and give again.

This organization made the mistake of assuming it knows how a donor wants to receive communications. They didn’t ask me, and I believe they have a default setting that automatically sends their e-news to anyone with an email address. I would have been pleased to be offered a choice about how they could keep in touch with me, or not.

Perhaps you’re scratching your head about how many of your donors don’t give again. Making one small change to how you engage with your donors will make them feel appreciated and part of the organizational family.

Ask. You may be surprised at the response.

Laura Mikuska


Thank you never gets old

I recently received a call from the chair of the board of a museum I support, thanking me for my monthly gift and giving me an update on the new executive director.

It was a delightful call and it made my day. I felt appreciated and close to the museum and its people.

A few days later I was invited to attend a fundraising tea for another organization I support, to raise money for a scholarship in memory of the founder’s mother. As I was not going to be able to attend, I sent my regrets and made a gift online through their website.

Almost as soon as I hit “submit,” my phone rang and I got a heartfelt thank you from the development director. Wow! Talk about making me feel good about giving!

It didn’t stop there. After the tea was held, I received a package with two packages of tea (pina colada and African chai!), a handwritten thank you from the founder and a response card for me to send back to wish the scholarship recipient well.

It’s important to say thank you, over and over. It really never gets old.

Julie Mikuska.


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