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Groups and Committees
Some users will want to record which small groups, committees etc. within their organization their donors are each members of. The Groups / Committees field in the Donor Details area allows you to do that.
If you have no interest in doing that, you can turn off the display of the Groups / Committees field with a checkbox on the Donor Details tab of the Maintenance ⇒ Main Window Options window, and then ignore the rest of this help topic.
Note: The Groups / Committees features are not available with the free Lite version of DONATION.
To start recording values in that field, you first have to set up your list of Groups, with the Maintenance ⇒ Groups / Committees menu option. That brings up a window such as the following. It will initially be empty, but this example shows a few that we set up:
On each row, the Short Name is an abbreviation or acronym, up to 5 characters long, that you will use for the group or committee. It is always all capital letters. The only characters it cannot include are spaces, percent signs, and single quotes. In addition, for technical reasons one row's Short Name cannot be a part of another row's Short Name. So for instance, you cannot have both "OFF" and "OFFIC" (or "OOFF"!).
The Full Name is a full name for that group or committee.
To add a row to the list, click New. Then you can fill in the fields, and click Save to save the change, or Cancel if you want to abandon the change.
You can also click into existing fields to make changes. If you change an existing Short Name and click Save, you will be prompted with the fact that that will change it for all donors in the current working year for whom that has already been recorded. (The Short Names are what is actually saved in the donors' Groups field.)
If you are no longer using a group or committee on the list, you can click into its row (which makes the hand pointer point to it) and click Delete. If you confirm that change and there are donors in the current working year for whom that group had been specified, that group will be removed from their records.
Click Close when you are done with your changes in this window.
Selecting Groups or Committees for a Donor
To specify the groups or committees for an individual donor, click into its Groups / Committees field in the Donor Details area of the main window, or click on the drop-down arrow at the right of that field. That will bring up a one-item popup menu. Click on that menu item, "View/Edit Groups / Committees". That will bring up a window such as the following. This example is for a donor for whom a couple of groups have already been specified:
To specify that the current donor is or isn't a part of the group or committee on a given row, check or uncheck the "Member?" checkbox on that row. (Or you can click on its Short Name or Full Name to check or uncheck the checkbox.)
When you are done making changes, click Save to save them, or you can click Cancel to abandon them.
Click Close to close the window.
If you have saved changes, those changes will be reflected in the Groups field in the Donor Details area. What is displayed and stored there is the Short Names that you have checked "Member?" for, separated by spaces. You then still have to Save the change for the donor itself, on the main window.
Groups are by Year
Each working year in the program has its own list of Groups / Committees. When you first change to a new year, or a year that does not have such a list, the current year's list will be copied over.
That way, you can make changes in one year that do not affect other years. This is similar to how it works with donor categories and donation categories.
Where and how can you use Groups / Committees?
You can select the Groups field in:
•Custom Reports: The Groups field containing the Short Names, as shown in the Donor Details, is printed when you selected Groups / Committees there.
In addition, a number of built-in reports, including ones showing Addresses or Contact Info, Envelopes, Labels, and Summary by Dollar Ranges, include the Groups field (and also the two Donor Category and six Other Info fields) as invisible fields that are not displayed, but you can filter on them.
Suppose you wanted to print mailing labels for only the donors that you had specified were in the Personnel Committee (indicated in the examples above by the Short Name "PER"). You would create the mailing labels (for instance, with Reports ⇒ Donor ⇒ Mailing Labels) then click Filter. See Filtering Reports for details on filtering. The entry you would make in the Filter window for this example would be as follows:
Basically that means that "PER" appears anywhere in the donor's Groups field, and thus when you clicked OK in the filter window, it would restrict the displayed mailing labels to exactly the desired donors.