Track Record

The team at Purposeful Fundraising has more than twenty years’ experience working with non-profits and charities in a number of countries. We are so proud of our work with organizations both large and small in a wide range of sectors – all of which are working to create positive change in the world!

Here are some comments from some of the organizations our team members have worked with in the past:

I have volunteered for many not-for-profit organizations in the last 20 years in many different roles but primarily as a member or Chair of the Board. I would not hesitate to recommend Mena to any organization, both large and small, that wants to assess and develop their fundraising strategy. She is friendly, intuitive, knowledgeable and strategic. At the Rideau Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, she quickly understood the strengths and challenges of the organization and has guided us towards developing a stronger relationship with our supporters in the Community. As an expert in her field, I know how skillfully she works with organizations to effectively figure out where to go and how to get there. I would also recommend her to any Board that wants to learn how they can become more supportive of the fundraising process.

Coralie Lalonde

CEO Katsura Investments & President, Rideau Valley Wildlife Sanctuary

In advising Informed Opinions on how to build fundraising capacity, Mena married comprehensive and methodical research with insightful analysis, concrete strategies and enthusiastic encouragement. It’s a delight to work with a consultant who feels like a genuine partner, rooting for you all the way. I recommend her highly.

Shari Graydon

Founder & Catalyst of Informed Opinions, Informed Opinions

As the chair of Fundraising Day for the Ottawa Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals Mena audited what we were offering and led a volunteer committee to almost double attendance over two years by adding to the quality and profile of this flagship association event. Mena has since brought her expertise to reviewing all our professional development offerings in her new role as Vice President.

AFP Ottawa’s fundraising day is the second largest professional development day among Canada’s AFP Chapters, second only to Toronto.  To quote one of our exhibitors and sponsors “Fundraising Day is one of the best run educational offerings I’ve seen across Canada”.

Derek Rumboldt-deLouché

President, Association of Fundraising Professionals Ottawa Chapter

I first worked with Mena when Vista was considering launching a capital appeal for circa £10m care home redevelopment. The charity was relatively unknown in the local area and hadn’t undertaken much strategic, high-level fundraising. The contract was to oversee a feasibility study, write a fundraising strategy and recruit and mentor the fundraising team. Throughout the process Mena was incredibly professional, personable and thorough. She always supported and motivated the team to believe that they could and would achieve what they needed to and opened doors to new contacts and more efficient and effective ways of working. Her interpersonal skills and fundraising knowledge are exceptional and she shares this freely and honestly. She is a real credit to the sector. I unreservedly recommend working with Mena.

Lorna Allen

former Director of Fundraising & Marketing, Vista (now Communications Manager, Macmillan Cancer Support), Macmillan Cancer Support

Mena gave an extremely well-received presentation to our 100+ members at our Researchers in Fundraising Conference. Feedback from the conference delegates was excellent, noting Mena’s clear concise style of delivery and extremely valuable and well-considered content as well as her ability to engage her audience and keep their interest throughout the session. Her authoritative and knowledgeable response to follow-up questions was especially impressive.

Rebecca Funnell

Former Chair of Events Committee, Researchers in Fundraising

Mena’s comprehensive analysis of our direct mail revenue stream and strategic recommendations were tremendously helpful for us to develop a more cost-effective approach to fundraising and to capitalize on our assets. The expert advice she provided on appropriate levels of donor stewardship was invaluable. We look forward to benefit from her wealth of expertise in the future!

Olivier Bonnet

Executive Director, Ethiopiaid Canada

We hired Mena to audit our current fundraising operations and develop a resources development plan. Mena was very thorough in assessing our various systems and ways of working, at all levels of the organization. The report was truly comprehensive and the Board of Directors was fully satisfied. We were pleased with their high level of professionalism and experience, so much so
that we asked her to continue to work with us on the implementation of the fundraising plan. Due to Mena’s outstanding service, professionalism and the pleasure of working with her, I am only too happy to provide a reference for her work.
Jacques Bertrand

Executive Director, Helpage Canada

Mena is a talented fundraiser and has provided us with expert counsel on developing our fundraising capacity. We’ve had great results and I look forward to implementing more of what we’ve learned. Highly recommended!

Renata Soutter

Co-Artistic Director, Propeller Dance

The Canadian Occupational Therapy Foundation retained the services of Mena Gainpaulsingh to provide COTF with a detailed plan on fundraising and communications. Not only was Mena’s research of COTF thorough, she spent an inordinate amount of time meeting with several board members, key volunteers and staff to ensure that she had a sound understanding of COTF. This knowledge served as a sound base to present the board of directors with a highly detailed plan to move forward. Furthermore, since the presentation of the plan, she has been regularly available to the President and to myself as well as to the board to answer any questions or provide any clarification on what she has proposed. It would be in COTF’s best interest to implement as much of what Mena has proposed to ensure that the Foundation is on the best path to move forward!

Sangita Kamblé

Executive Director, Canadian Occupational Therapists Foundation

The Purposeful Fundraising team was behind the grant writing success of the 2013 edition of the Orleans Festival.  It was entirely because of their expertise in researching, cultivating donors and drafting the applications that the Festival was able to go ahead that year.

David Harmer

Chair, Orleans Festival

Mena’s engaging demeanour and result-oriented approach have contributed greatly to the development of our case for support, solidifying her reputation as a highly competent and motivated communicator.
Remco Volmer

Managing Director, Artengine

Mena has been a tremendous resource and fantastic consultant in the three years I have known her. She runs fundraising seminars focused on sharing ideas and solutions for not-for-profits. Her diverse and comprehensive fundraising experience has provided her with the ability to assess situations quickly and make sound recommendations to enhance fundraising success.

After attending these sessions for one year, I approached her to consult directly with my organisation at the time (Community Radio Fund of Canada) to help develop a fundraising strategy and key materials, including a case for support and foundation proposal template. As I expected, I found Mena to be extremely competent and enjoyable to work with. She is bright, innovative, and dependable.

Over the years, Mena has proven to be one of the few people I can really talk to about fundraising – from strategy details to relationship building, from donor retention to not-for-profit organizational realities – she knows it all. Her knowledge and experience fuels her wisdom. Combined with her work ethic and personality, I do not hesitate to place my trust in her.

Melissa Kaestner

Former Executive Director, Community Radio Fund of Canada

I have nothing but fantastic things to say about Mena and the great work she did for my organization. Mena took a hands-on and customized approach to help my organization figure out where to focus our fundraising efforts. She went above and beyond the scope of her assignment to ensure the end result was exactly what our organization needed.

As a fundraising consultant, Mena stands out in two significant ways: first, she doesn’t come with a pre-conceived idea of what an organization should or shouldn’t do. She treats every organization individually and has a vast network of experts across all fundraising streams, which means you get a holistic understanding of how to get the best bang for your fundraising buck. Second, Mena works diligently and digs deep in her research to make sure she understands the organization before making recommendations. I was incredibly taken by her genuine desire to help our organization succeed – that level of commitment to providing top quality work and client satisfaction isn’t easy to come by and can often mean the difference between success or failure of an organization. I would absolutely recommend working with Mena!

Sheona McGraw

Executive Director, Raising The Village

I was looking for some very practical training on grant writing for the arts and had the immense pleasure of organising a session with Mena for me and my colleagues. Mena has a unique combination of great content and great delivery!!! The training went well beyond the ‘how to’ and challenged us to think and write strategically. The session took us from very insightful and critical knowledge sharing to practical templates and tools that got us building the skeleton of our grants then and there. It was one of the most beneficial training sessions I have ever attended on the subject. Mena has a wealth of experience and knowledge that she can easily communicate; she is analytical, strategic, and knows how to lead you to optimal outcomes.

Caroline Obeid

Artistic Producer and Manager, Shenkman Arts Centre

We reached out to Mena to help us to create our Case for Support for a major campaign that we were launching to tackle issues around global poverty.  While we had a draft in place, we knew that we needed some additional guidance to strengthen its ability to inspire and persuade donors to support the campaign.  Mena came in, at short notice, to work with our team and helped us to effectively refocus our messaging on what matters most to donors: our impact. As a result, we were able to create a document that convincingly expressed our key messages and has been an enormous support to our fundraising campaign.

Laurie Buske

Director of Resource Development , CUSO International

Mena has carried out an audit of our current fundraising strategies, identified potential risks and has helped us to build a plan that sets realistic goals based on sound research. In addition to her experience and knowledge, Mena comes with a tremendous network and set of resources. Mena’s strategic plan will become the road map for this Committee and for Starlight in Ottawa. I rely heavily on Mena as a leader and expert on the Steering Committee; Mena has that rare combination of knowledge and the natural ability of a relationship builder and leader. I cannot recommend Mena highly enough and consider myself and Starlight very fortunate for connecting with her.

Chris Baylis

Former Regional Manager, Children's Starlight Foundation

Mena and her team are heaven sent. She and her team met with our organization to audit our fundraising strategy/tactics and easily identified major areas for improvement. Not only did they suggest what to do, they also coached us on how to do it. They remained available for mentoring throughout our fundraising revamp, providing input on everything from the highest- level, strategic elements – such as engaging our Board in fundraising – to the lowest-level, tactical elements, like what to include in an e-mail to a prospective sponsor. Since we started working with Mena, our fundraising prowess has (at least) doubled. We are not only more comfortable as fundraisers, we are more certain of the value our organization can offer to prospective supporters. Thank you Mena and team!
Maria Smirnoff

Program Manager, Ottawa Network for Education

I want to express again how amazing a facilitator you were on Saturday. Your knowledge and expertise just ooze in everything you say. It was so helpful for us all.

Erin Leigh

Executive Director, OCTEVAW

I thought I knew my organisation inside and out: what we did, what we cared about, what we wanted. But doing the key messages exercise with Mena and her team asking good questions, gently pushing back when necessary and facilitating discussions between our team members cracked me open to a new way to think about all of those things. In just a few months it has already made a difference in how I describe our work to our members, partners, funders and other stakeholders. I didn’t know how crucial it was until I had done it, now I recommend the process to all the other not-for-profit organisations I work with.

Shelley Robinson

Executive Director, National Community Radio Association

Mena’s interactive teaching style and anecdotal approach encouraged discussion and storytelling, which led to a better understanding of the necessity for a case for support. This topic can be overwhelming, but Mena broke it down to its key components that enabled participants to grasp the concept more easily. Overall, Mena’s friendly, relaxed approach was well received, and her well-evidenced knowledge gave the attendees the confidence to move forward with their own cases for support.

Sharon Diamond

Revenue Development Officer, Ottawa Arts Council

When we hired Mena our hopes were that she would be able to support us in becoming more sustainable as well as developing our organization to a higher level of functioning. Mena did all this, but she did so very much more. We were blown away by her expertise, knowledge and delivery. Mena was able to help us step back and see a wider vision of where we needed to go. I look back to eight months ago, before we were working with Mena and I cannot believe the enormous learning curve we have had as an organization. It is not simply the steps and ideas to implement that she helped us understand, but she provided us a much wider vision of how to develop as an organization. I simply cannot recommend Mena Gainpaulsingh enough! We plan to continue to work with Mena so that Dandelion can benefit from her expertise

Hannah Beach

Executive Director, Dandelion Dance

Mena is both an amazing fundraiser and teacher. As an instructor she is professional and engaging, and brought a real depth of experience in fundraising to HUB Masterclass. Attendees of the training she led had only positive things to say about her approach and spoke to the tremendous value they got from her class.

Jessica Lax

Hub Masterclass Curator, Hub Ottawa

Mena has been an integral part of the Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre’s new fundraising strategy. Because of her hard work, expertise, creativity and dedication, we are much further down the path of embarking upon a much more diverse fundraising program than we would have been otherwise. With her assistance, we have been able to identify new fundraising opportunities and fine tune what we are doing to ensure the most efficient and effective use of our resources. I would wholeheartedly recommend Mena to any non-profit organization seeking to hone its fundraising strategy.
Monica Chohan

President, Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre

We have found Mena’s service to be excellent. She offers a professional and flexible service – advising on bid and project development, to undertaking research and writing bids. Mena has brought a valuable external perspective to our fundraising work, and we have benefited from her extensive experience and sound guidance. Mena supported our team to develop a number of proposals including major lottery bids, and brought in over 1.6 million pounds [equiv $2.56 million] to our organisation.

Valerie Borne

former External Funding Manager, Ealing Council

The CCPA is grateful to Mena for her counsel and commitment in helping us to develop our fundraising capacity. In particular, her knowledge and experience were essential to understanding how and where we needed to grow our fundraising program, and in the hiring of our development officer. Mena is a skilled fundraiser whose services we would highly recommend to other non-profits.
Emily Turk

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

Mena led our eclectic and diverse team through our first strategic planning session earlier this fall. The process she chose for us was incredibly helpful, not only to the organisation, but also for the individual learning that occurred. The majority of our board had not experienced or engaged in a workshop, setting or exercise like this. Mena strategically and gently walked us through each activity, step by step, logically, patiently and professionally. What was especially enjoyable to observe was her wonderful ability through out, to be able to hear and address each person exactly where they were in the process, and then her having this way of unifying our thoughts, approaches and ideas. I’ve since recommended her to two of the other Boards I sit on.
Rima Zabian

Vice President, Bank Street BIA

Mena worked with The Open Futures Trust to help us develop our ‘case for support’and to advise us on a fundraising strategy. We liked Mena from the moment we met her, she was a good listener and clearly creative in her thinking. Her professional approach to developing the case for support was extremely helpful. She carried out thorough research and provided convincing data to outline the need for Open Futures. She then helped to pull together and extend our evidence base for the effectiveness of the programme. She enabled us to prepare a broad base of information which we could then draw on and adapt for particular funders. Mena is a good communicator and easy to work with, she has a great deal of experience and I would really recommend her. She always has an eye on strategic development too which adds a great deal.
Lucy O’Rorke

Trust Director, Open Futures Trust

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