Episode 180: How to Grow an Online Community

January 21, 2021 Blackbaud, Inc.

There’s no question that online communities are more important than they’ve ever been in the past. These communities can offer real action and tangible support to all types of people who live anywhere in the world.

Today’s guests, Lesley Pinder, Head of Supporter Experience for the British Red Cross and Lucy Caldicott, Founder of ChangeOut, discuss their Facebook group, Fundraising Chat, as an example of community development, the sector supporting each other, and lessons learned. Listen in to learn how they set up the group, how they navigated the rules of the group, and how they’ve continued to grow the community.


Topics Discussed in This Episode:

  • How the Fundraising Chat Facebook group began
  • Setting up the ground rules for the group
  • Policing the rules in the group
  • The limits of an online community like Fundraising Chat
  • Cultivating a more international feel in an online community
  • The power of Fundraising Chat in connecting people and sharing learnings



Lesley Pinder

Lucy Caldicott

Fundraising Chat




“The people that we seeded the group with, which wasn’t – in hindsight, we can pretend we were being really strategic – but were people that we knew were already really active on social media and already had really good networks.” – Lesley Pinder

“We’re accidental community managers – Lesley Pinder

“When you’ve got something like George Floyd’s murder and everyone’s talking about that in every other space, it felt completely negligent to not do something in Fundraising Chat.” –Lucy Caldicott

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