‘We’ve raised millions of dollars so far’

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Project Futures founder and CEO Steph Lorenzo describes how she launched the not-for-profit seven years ago

“My motto is, ‘you don’t ask, you don’t get’ and everyone on our board, apart from my friend Steve and I, were all parents’ friends or my old boss – people we knew would add value, expertise and clout that we needed. That’s how we got Project Futures off the ground.

Building relationships is key to getting people on side, but you have to be genuine and authentic about it. I shouted all sorts of people coffees and drank so much of it myself, so I could get advice, guidance and understand this world I was getting myself into. The conversations were not only insightful, but so interesting. As humans we never stop learning and I always maintain that attitude. It’s never just about the charity, it’s never one-sided. The best relationships you maintain are the ones where you can also help the other person in some way.

Not everyone I spoke to wanted to get involved. They would always support me, but I didn’t  make them feel guilty about saying ‘no’. I felt that that approach was always best. It might have taken more time, but we built our brand on that premise, of charity being something people wanted to be a part of as opposed to something they needed to be part of or felt guilty about being a part of. It’s hard work and it doesn’t happen overnight that’s for sure.”

Steph’s full story is in Rare Birds’ latest title #IFSHECANICAN. Click here for more details.

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