At Winebrenner, COVID-19 has certainly served as an accelerator. Many ideas we’ve talked about in the past are moving ahead more rapidly than they would have without COVID-19.
At the same time, Winebrenner’s foundational relationships have not decreased or taken a back seat as a result of COVID-19. Our relationships with our donors are a key example.
Recently, Winebrenner held a “Week of Gratitude” in which our students called many of our financial supporters simply to say “thank you” for their long-time support. It was wonderful to hear the stories from the students as they talked with those who are generous with their giving. It was wonderful to hear from those receiving the calls knowing that they are receiving first hand insight into the lives of our students.
Generosity breeds generosity. Too often we overlook students when thinking about those who can engage donors. AND, too often we over-look donors when thinking about those who could engage students and potential students.
Within God’s kingdom, stewardship is about how we manage and distribute all of our resources, whether financial or relational. Although COVID-19 is serving as an accelerator for the development of ideas, establishing, building, and maintaining relationships is not a process that can be accelerated. COVID or no COVID, we deeply value our donors and will continue to intentionally communicate our appreciation.
One of the key aspects of the operating system I’ve been describing is to maintain low fixed costs for physical space and full-time personnel. As Winebrenner continues to be a good steward of resources, we are confident that doors will continue to open for us to interact with those who are generous with their personal resources.
Next week I’ll be working through how this commitment to stewardship invites us to rethink many assumptions we have about our organizational approach to finances.
– Dr. Brent Sleasman, President