The word Natik means “we sow” in Tz’utujil Maya, and “our house” in Tzotzil and Ch’ol Maya, the languages spoken by Natik Esperanza’s partner communities in Guatemala and Chiapas, Mexico. Founded in 2003, Natik Esperanza supports local nonprofit organizations who provide education, health, and economic opportunities in their communities.
Anita Smart, Natik Esperanza’s Executive Director, began her work to support the community in 1999 with a $1,000 donation from her childhood church. She soon recognized that buying books and medicine with the funds wasn’t enough. “I realized that one-off solutions weren’t really building infrastructure to change things regionally or generationally,” Anita recalls. Through her volunteer work, she connected with the International Humanitarian Fund (IHF), which hired Anita to lead their work with international NonGovernmental Organizations. In 2012, the IHF changed its structure to deepen its impact in Guatemala and Mexico and became known as Natik Esperanza. Today, Natik Esperanza has an annual budget of $250,000 and works with six organizations to serve hundreds of children and families throughout the region.
In 2018, Anita found Network for Good after a three-month search for the right fundraising software for the organization and its partners. Four years later, Anita says Network for Good still offers “the biggest bang for the buck” for small nonprofit organizations.
Consistent Communication Made Easy
For a small nonprofit, Natik Esperanza communicates with its donors often. Anita sends a monthly email newsletter to donors, and each partner organization sends a monthly bulletin with updates in both English and Spanish. Behind the scenes, Network for Good’s easy-to-use email system comes in handy. “Network for Good made it easy for me to manage sending my email and partner bulletins each month,” Anita said. “From formatting the messages to sending them to different list segments, it made it very easy to make it seem like I was a lot of people.”
Resources, Reminders, and Responses Save Time and Promote Success
With Network for Good, Anita has the information she needs at her fingertips. ”I always get a response when I send a request or can’t figure something out,” Anita said. “I like to figure things out on my own, and fortunately, Network for Good’s help database is huge. I love it and use it a lot.” She also appreciates being able to review resources quickly or participate in a longer webinar based on her time and interest.
Anita isn’t alone. Natik’s administrative assistant also uses Network for Good for her own fundraising tasks. This saves Anita valuable time and supports the organization’s goal to offer professional development training to Mayan individuals.
Integration: An Essential Ingredient for Growth
What Anita appreciates most about Network for Good’s donor management system is its all-in-one approach to fundraising. “To have a donation tracker, a donor database, and a communication platform all-in-one is just brilliant.”
Additionally, Anita and Natik’s board treasurer have played a role in enhancing the features of the platform. They requested that Network for Good develop an integration with Quickbooks and were one of a handful of organizations to test this feature in the donor management system.
Anita is proud of the strong foundation Natik has established through Network for Good. She’s confident that as the organization grows the platform’s integrated approach to fundraising will become even more crucial to the Natik’s success. “When we get to the place where we’re receiving larger donations, we’ll be able to handle it, “Anita explains. “We have an accountant. We have an engaged board. We have an interface with all the data we need for our monthly and annual reports. We also have our Quickbooks, banking, and Network for Good accounts linked so that managing designations is really clear. So, as we grow, we have all the infrastructure to be able to handle it.”
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Published: November 10, 2022