How Conservation
NW raised over $90K with FreeWill’s Smart Giving Suite

May 9, 2024
min read
How Conservation
NW raised over $90K with FreeWill’s Smart Giving Suite

The Opportunity

Conservation NW is a nonprofit based in Washington state that protects Pacific Northwest wildlife and wildland conservation. Their focus is on threatened native species and preserving sufficient land for their survival. To sustain this mission, Conservation NW turned to FreeWill to implement its Planned Giving Suite, aiming to expand their legacy giving program.

After securing over $1M in bequest commitments within the first two years, Conservation NW decided to adopt the Smart Giving Suite to address challenges across other fundraising streams.

Meghan Madden, Director of Philanthropy and Operations, highlighted the pre-existing issues: “We were working with a lack of information, a lack of transparency, and a lack of good customer service.”

Previously, the organization had not promoted tax-smart giving methods beyond a handful of regular stock donors. This limited approach caused frustrations for donors and staff due to a cumbersome donation process, and many gifts arriving anonymously, which complicated proper attribution and donor stewardship.


The Solution

FreeWill’s Smart Giving Suite has allowed Conservation NW to enhance and systematize their non-cash giving processes. The Partner Portal has provided valuable insights into donor activities, ensuring that no gift has gone unrecorded or unrecognized, and has allowed their team to steward donors in a time-efficient manner.

Through promotion on their site and targeted Smart Giving Suite campaigns, they have been able to solicit gifts of stock, Qualified Charitable Distributions, cryptocurrency, and Donor-Advised Fund grants just as easily as cash donations, leading to an increase in non-cash gifts for 
the organization.

The suite has not only streamlined administrative tasks but has also enriched the donor experience at Conservation NW. With the support of a dedicated Partner Success Strategist, they have sent customized email campaigns and have actively solicited non-cash gifts at in-person events. Major donors have proactively reached out to the team, praising the clear communications and accessibility of new giving options. At their annual auction, they introduced a QR code attendees could scan to donate stock instantly, avoiding credit card fees and offering tax-smart options to their major donors.

Conservation NW considers the partnership a pivotal piece of the organization’s long-term strategy.

According to Madden: “The Smart Giving Suite adds a significant amount of capacity beyond even adding an additional staff person because we have data, a copywriter, and strategy. We just have to take the resources that FreeWill creates for us and integrate it into our plan, which makes a huge difference for us and how we're approaching communications going forward.”



  • $91K+ in real-time gifts
  • $1M+ in primary bequest commitments


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The really compelling thing about the Smart Giving Suite is that we could add so many different resources all together, have them connected to each other, and fit within a broader strategy of non-cash gifts and how we’re communicating about those to donors.

Meghan Madden
Meghan Madden
Director of Philanthropy and Operations

With FreeWill, we instantly had 100% more information about the gifts that we were getting than we had before.

Meghan Madden
Meghan Madden
Director of Philanthropy and Operations

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It's not necessarily extra work, it’s just being smarter in the work we do. I think FreeWill has challenged us in that way. And our results since our FreeWill partnership have been tremendous. Having that relationship with your strategist to make sure you’re doing what’s best for your organization has paid off.

Don Cannada
Board Member
MPB Foundation

Not only are we booking bequests valued at over $1 million, we are getting full contact information for constituents that we only had email info for. The support offered by the FreeWill team from sales to implementation is top notch. This has been the best vendor experience I’ve had in my twenty plus year career.

Valerie Trego
Senior Development Officer,
Susquehanna Health Foundation

I think you're putting your finger on the pulse of what charitable organizations want and need to promote. I think it's very smart. It's exciting, and I'm excited to be in this space with you. You're creating a whole new class of philanthropists.

Brian Peterson
Director, Legacy and Gift Planning
Human Rights Watch

Having FreeWill is like having a part-time planned giving officer. Our FreeWill strategist is there anytime I have questions, ideas, or comments. I trust their expertise, and all the support they provide means I can spend time on other priorities.

Les Fout
Senior Stewardship Advisor
Knox Area Rescue Mission

FreeWill is the missing piece of this puzzle. It starts a conversation and creates this almost audible buzz around the topic. Larger donors hear the buzz and want to be a part of it so they step forward and that's already proving to be so valuable. The excitement is real in our office on a Director level.

Jeff McCormick
Director of Development and Planned Giving
Saint Ignatius High School