In 2004, Kethleen Kelly Janus co-founded Spark, a nonprofit organization that supports global women’s issues. Starting with six women in their 20s, Spark is now a network of 15,000 members and the largest network of millennial donors in the world. Over the past ten years, they have raised more than $1.5 million in relatively small contributions, mostly less than $100. As Spark grew, The Women’s Funding Network, a group of more than 160 women’s foundations around the world—typically run by baby boomers—began to take notice.

The leadership asked them for their secret sauce: how do they get more millennials involved in the women’s movement? The network was having trouble galvanizing them and, more specifically, getting them to open their wallets. Although research shows that close to 85 percent of millennials donate to nonprofit organizations, the majority of the network’s donors were much older.

Cultivating the next generation of donors is the lifeblood of the future of any nonprofit. The Stanford Social Innovation Review has explored how the millennial generation gets involved with and gives to social causes. To be successful, nonprofits must cater to younger and older donors alike. But that’s a lot easier said than done.

Read the results of their research on how millennials connect, get involved, and give.

For some background information on this topic, also read: Millennials and the Social Sector: What's Next?

Originally published July 15, 2014

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