Fundraisers need to be on the alert for changes in trends anywhere in the world, and that includes the Middle East, where fundraising might not have seemed like a worthwhile project early in this century.
During the 2014 International Fundraising Congress (IFC), consultants Della Weight, Daryl Upsall, Phil Woollam and Christian Schaake said that their 2013 market report showed a big shift in the Middle East. For example, in 2007 they struggled to find very much organized fundraising and fundraisers in the region outside Israel.
Since then, however:
- Indigenous campaigns such as “Dubai Cares” and Red Cross Zakat appeals are putting charitable giving on the map;
- A significant number of charities are setting up fundraising teams in the region and externally;
- Fundraising still remains a challenge in the region, with much of the giving being religious and secretive;
- The fundraiser must be able to navigate the interconnectedness of government, business and the royal families;
- It is possible that the development of mobile telephony and mobile banking will help unleash the giving potential of the general population in the region;
- Turkey, Lebanon, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are on the “developing” list; and,
- Israel is on the “developing to medium mature” list.