108 Conservatives From 30 Countries Get Trained in England
Fundraising is not just about asking for money, but about developing relationships with people who share your vision and want to be your partners in bringing change to society. 


Your donors are not just a source of money -- like a bank machine -- but partners, so keep them informed about the progress you are making and let them know how their contributions are helping. These were a few of the main concepts in Morton Blackwell’s opening speech at the sixth annual International School of Fundraising held at the beautiful Wellington College in Berkshire, England.

Over four days, 108 people from 30 countries and four continents, met at Wellington College from March 26 to 30. Seventeen renowned experts in fundraising, from the US, Europe, and Latin America, delivered 35 lectures teaching vital skills necessary to succeed financially as a political leader or as an organizational entrepreneur. 

Social entrepreneurs learned how to:

  • Build strong donor relations
  • Develop fundraising strategies
  • Plan effective fundraising events
  • Understand online fundraising
  • Adapt fundraising methods to their home countries

Speakers included major players in the field such as Morton Blackwell, Bruce Eberle, Stephen Clouse, Rick Hendrix, Kevin Gentry, Justin Murff, Brian Davis, Katherine Eberle, Ron Nehring, and Alejandro Chafuen, and Silvio Dalla Valle from Italy, Mathias von Gersdorff from Germany, Tim Evans and Matthew Elliot from England, and Jose Antonio Ureta from France.

While the day was packed with a lot of learning, after dinner, students congregated at the on-campus pub for networking and sharing stories.  Students from Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Venezuela, Guatemala, United States, Mexico, Canada, United Kingdom, Romania, France, Spain, Italy, Croatia, Slovakia, Germany, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Sweden, Denmark, Poland, Austria, Nigeria, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, South Korea and Mongolia met at the pub.

As we spoke to one another they learned how similar the social problems are around the world and how we all face the same obstacles in solving those problems.  Students found it motivating to learn that they were not alone.  Networks for knowledge-sharing and support developed.

On the night of Friday, March 29, the International School of Fundraising concluded with a gala dinner lit by candlelight.  At the dinner, Morton Blackwell and Miguel Moreno of the Leadership Institute and Benjamin Harris-Quinney of the Bow group presented the Global Leadership Award, which recognizes exceptional work done by individuals around the world. 

This award is granted jointly by the Leadership Institute, the Bow Group, the World Congress of Families/ Howard Center for Family, Religion, and Society, and The Institut de Formation Politique.  The Global Leadership Award embodies a non-partisan network of leaders who aim to bring ideas to power and to give power to ideas by stimulating dialogue and discussion about critical international conservative issues.

During his speech, Morton Blackwell said, “We recognize and honor the unfaltering dedication of some remarkable individuals, who through their consistent faith, solid professionalism, and unwavering commitment to the conservative cause are making an international impact” and that “this joint award seeks to encourage the best forms of international engagement to meet the global challenges of the 21st century.“

Recipients of the Global Leadership Award are:  Nic Conner, Donna Edmunds, Samuel Kasumu, Karolina Vidovic Kristo, Pauline Fynn, Jack Chubb, Mark Eastham, Adryana Boyne, Marie-Noël Julienne, Eric Martin, Simon Cossiez, Adeyemi Ikuforiji, Sylva Ashimole, Juan Carlos Lazarte, Alexander Mooney, Lorenzo Montanari, Zeljko Zidaric, Amanda Sanchez, Luz Elena Delgado Flores, Ron Nehring, Oliver Cooper, Onyebuchi Monica Madiebo, Marco Respinti, Vanesa Anez, and Marcel Lazar.

LI appreciates their contributions of time and talent to increase the number and effectiveness of conservative activists and leaders worldwide.  It takes a special kind of person to be an activist.  While most people might get angry and complain – these people decided to act.  Not only did they see the problem, they found a solution. They acted.They are activists.

Saturday, for those that left on later flights, was a day of sightseeing in London. From Big Ben to the London Eye, from Parliament to Westminster Cathedral and Westminster Abbey, thousands of pictures were taken with new friends. 

The overall goal of the training was not to feed delegates with a fish, but to teach them how to become extraordinary fishermen.  The training that was provided is just the start.  Betterment of the world comes from the work that activists do with the training.  The world now has 108 newly empowered social entrepreneurs returning to their home countries, empowered, energized, and ready to make a difference!  We wish each and every one of those activists the best of luck.