The Cause Agency
The Cause Agency

The Cause Agency’s First Pro Bono Client: More Than Budgets


In a world with so many pressing social issues and a culture that has turned tackling those social issues into a trendy status symbol, it’s hard to sift between the people who want to do good and the people who want to be seen doing good. But, oh, how inspiring it is when you do find those people, the ones who do important but unglamorous (and often unseen) work.

As marketers, we know that these powerful organizations must be seen. Not so they can get superficial social credit in philanthropy but as a way to recruit volunteers and make the public and potential clients aware of the services they provide. The Cause Agency (TCA) was formed to do just that, but we also know that changing the world doesn’t leave much time for advertising budgets and press releases.

When TCA was formed, several nonprofit organizations approached TCA asking for pro-bono work and each was asked to fill out the appropriate paperwork to apply for services. Within 24 hours, one of those organizations returned their paperwork in full. Their swift action spoke volumes about the passion they had and TCA knew they would make a great client—not to mention they had a strong story with the potential to make a real difference in the local community and beyond.

TCA invited More Than Budgets, an organization started by TCU professor and economist Dawn Elliot, to become their first pro bono client. More Than Budgets is a financial program for people who are stuck in a cycle of poverty. More than classes in basic finance, More Than Budgets partners with professional organizations and individuals to provide financial mentorship.

Dawn Elliot is captivating when she talks about tackling the poverty mindset by showing clients that overcoming poverty is possible. The program then follows that up with practical, financial training. When clients believe that they can improve their economic situation and then are given the tools to do so, success happens. In fact, the More Than Budgets model, which has shown significant progress at the local level, is now being adapted for use in poverty-stricken countries like Haiti.

TCA has offered More Than Budgets pro bono services in brand identity, web design, public relations and brand messaging. The work we do for them can never compare to the work they do for real people in our community. It does, however, give us an opportunity to use our skills to help them succeed so they can, in turn, help others succeed. And that is something we can’t put a price on.