Essential Story

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Essential Story
This is a key story that demonstrates how your organization changes lives. Every board
member and staff member should have at least one essential story that they can share with
potential donors, current donors and volunteers.
The essential story should be:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Short! (1-2 minutes)
Moving/emotional – does it make an emotional connection with the listener?
Easy to remember (use words/terminology that is natural for you)
Personalized: include a person’s name so that the story is “real.”
Descriptive of how your organization works.
A common story format is:
“Before” – what was a person’s life before they came to your organization?
“Intervention” – how did this person come in contact with your organization? What did they
receive?
“After” – how has their life changed? Are they now involved in the ministry in an ongoing way
(i.e., counselor, volunteer, etc.)?
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