Arthritis Foundation

Arthritis Foundation Increases Online Fundraising with Blackbaud Sphere™

The Arthritis Foundation is the only national nonprofit organization that supports the more than 100 types of arthritis and related conditions. Founded in 1948, with headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, the Arthritis Foundation has multiple service points located throughout the country. The Arthritis Foundation is the largest private, nonprofit contributor to arthritis research in the world, funding more than $380 million in research grants since 1948. The Foundation helps people take control of arthritis by providing public health education, pursuing public policy and legislation, and conducting evidence-based programs to improve the quality of life for those living with arthritis.


  • The Arthritis Foundation needed a unified fundraising platform to support the entire organization operating with 40 multi-tier chapter accounts nationwide.
  • The Foundation wanted to increase online fundraising efforts as measured by total online giving and overall participant involvement online.
  • Arthritis Foundation needed a data integration tool to pass collected online donor data into the Team Approach® database.


  • In 2004, the Arthritis Foundation selected Blackbaud Sphere to support a national roll-out of Friends Asking Friends® technology to support their major national events, including Arthritis Walk, Joints in Motion, and Jingle Bell Run.
  • Blackbaud Sphere is now used in all 40 Arthritis Foundation chapters to support a variety of fundraising events and programs.
  • Blackbaud continues to develop quick-to-deploy templates for all major event types using Friends Asking Friends.
  • Blackbaud developed a periodic data adapter to pass data collected from all events across all chapters to the Team Approach database.


  • The Arthritis Foundation has raised over $16 million online from more than 1,700 events in 40 chapters.
  • Overall online event fundraising has grown by an average of 55 percent over the past three years.
  • Online events have contributed 612,016 new supporters to the organization’s database.
  • In 2008, the Foundation consolidated the number of events nationwide and still increased overall online revenue by 17 percent.
  • Over 60 percent of event participants registered online in 2008, each sending an average of 22 emails using Friends Asking Friends.

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