PRG Serves As Fundraising Counsel To The Largest Campaign In Recent Sonoma County History

Client: Catholic Charities of Santa Rosa

When Catholic Charities came to PRG, they had an ambitious goal. The agency, one of the county’s oldest and largest, had been on the front lines of homelessness for decades and needs were surging. They had an opportunity to purchase properties adjacent to their shelter and develop a whole city block for a new center, complete wrap-around services, and permanent affordable housing. It would require a sweeping new strategy, grit, and lots of money. Their vision – “The Caritas Center.”

PRG was brought in to assess the feasibility of a $16 million capital campaign and to then create a fundraising strategy. Working closely with inspired Executive Director Len Marabella and capable Development Director Rebecca Kendall, PRG designed the campaign, established systems for a hard-hitting initiative, helped the agency recruit a top-flight Campaign Cabinet, and supported fundraising leaders throughout the campaign. Meanwhile, a partnership between Catholic Charities and Burbank Housing was created to develop 140 units of affordable housing on the site – Caritas Homes. This suddenly became the largest, boldest initiative to tackle both the homelessness and affordable housing crisis of Sonoma County.

As the project grew, so did its costs – to more than $40 million. The campaign blew through it’s initial $16 million goal in less than 6 mos. and reset their target at $28 million. Tax credit financing and government grants would fill the gap. Following continued Leadership Gifts were new major gifts, and ultimately a successful community campaign – hundreds in all. The campaign concluded having raised more than $35 million.

Len Marabella said: While the campaign was a successful mobilization of many generous donors, PRG was the glue that connected our vision to the realities of a major campaign. They were at our side at every step, helped us to course-correct when we needed it and truly put everything they had into our success.”

The Caritas Center is currently under construction and scheduled to welcome it new participants and residents in November 2023.
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