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Celebrating 20 Years in Fundraising Consultancy

In 2018 we celebrate 20 years in fundraising consultancy, Wootton George Consulting having been founded in March 1998 by Gill Wootton and Simon George.

Both experienced fundraisers, Gill and Simon had started their fundraising careers raising funds for a range of charities in the 1980's and 1990's. Having met via the Institute of Fundraising, they set up the company to help those charities that needed external advice and support to grow their income. Very quickly, they found that they did not have enough hours in the day, or all the experience demanded by clients, so gradually took on additional consultants to meet demand.

simonA very popular early offering was the Trust Service, which helps charities to raise funds from trusts and foundations. This is still operating today and has raised many millions of pounds for client charities, many of which have stayed with us for ten or more years (the record is 18 years!).

We then developed diagnostic and strategic services, including fundraising audits, feasibility studies and strategy development, all of which remain popular.

In more recent years, we have developed specialisms in further areas, such as National Lottery applications, project evaluations and legacy campaign planning.

In the early years, 70% of our work came to us by recommendation or as repeat business and this still holds true today. We do very little advertising as a result, which also helps to keep fees affordable for clients.

Simon and Gill also put a lot of volunteer time into supporting the IoF, both in chairing the Midlands (and later the West Midlands) region and in setting up the IoF's Trusts and Statutory Special Interest Group in 1999, which continues to flourish today.

Gill Wootton retired in 2011 and sadly died in 2016, after a long period of ill health. However, much of what she helped to build lives on in the company, which continues to thrive, with a broad client base and a team of 20 consultants.

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the company, Simon will be swimming 20 miles in 2018, in support of the charity Climate Stewards. This builds on our six years of support for this charity partner.

climateSimon commented: "I'm not a great swimmer and 20 miles will take me months to achieve, a bit at a time, but the work of Climate Stewards is so important in raising awareness of climate change and in finding practical ways to tackle it, that I felt I had to do my bit to help. So I'm hoping that lots of people will get behind me and support Climate Stewards' fantastic work in 2018."

To sponsor Simon's swim please visit his JustGiving page here.

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