There are many steps involved in starting a ministry like ours. Every Good Gift is a business that is a ministry to the women it employs. Before deciding on a name and incorporating, we devoted our first few months to designing the ministry, forming a leadership team, researching and choosing what we would sell, and raising funds.
Below, we’ve laid out some of the major steps we’ve taken. You will see what we’ve accomplished thus far and what steps we still need to take.
Pray with us as we take those steps.
We completed a draft of a three-year business plan in December 2014 and, then, after receiving additional feedback, completed it in January 2015. It involved research about products, competition, and markets; developing a marketing plan; creation of a financial plan that includes revenue forecasting, a personnel plan, and the budget; and explaining ministry goals, leadership, and design.
Board of Directors
We formed an Advisory Committee that met in January and February 2015. In March the Advisory Committee became the Board of Directors. It consists of two pastors, an accountant, an attorney, a biblical counselor, a women’s ministry leader, and individuals with expertise in computers and marketing. Meet the Every Good Gift Board of Directors by clicking here. The Board elected officers and has adopted a mission statement, vision and goals, articles of incorporation, bylaws, and a statement of faith.
We held two focus groups, facilitated by a board member with expertise in marketing, in February 2015. These gave us valuable insights on our product line, distribution, our name, and our logo. A third group discussed more specifics on the contents of the baskets we will sell.
On March 2, 2015 we were officially incorporated in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as Every Good Gift.
We submitted our application to the Internal Revenue Service in March 2015. In May, less than two months after submitting our application, we received word that we had been designated a 501(c)(3) organization. That means that contributions to Every Good Gift are deductible.
We began holding a three-part series of volunteer training sessions in April 2015, and it has been repeated since then. These trainings cover the ministry design, scripture on poverty and the poor, review of material from Bridges Out of Poverty and Christ Kitchen, and information about trauma and healing through the Lord.
Website and Online Sales
We went live with our website in June 2015. Board member Joseph Comanda designed and developed it with the help of Heather Wilson who supplied the graphics. She also designed our logo, letterhead, and more. Then in April 2016, we went live with our online store, selling a variety of cards and gift boxes.
We completed a pilot project (September – December 2015). Every Good Gift employed four women. Three worked per day, and we worked 10.5 hours per week. The women learned how to make greeting cards, we chose product designs, we added tiny gift boxes, and we participated in our first craft fair.
Our first gift basket became available in May 2016.
We’re still not all the way. Here are some things we still need to accomplish.
- Additional grant applications for funding to grow Every Good Gift.
- Offer six part-time positions.
- New marketing strategies to increase our sales.
- Continue expanding our gift basket product line.