Letter of Appreciation to Philanthropic Volunteers

6, 7, 8

The purpose of this lesson is to develop an appreciation for the importance of follow-up letters.

PrintThree Forty-Five Minute Class Periods

The learner will:

  • write a thank-you letter using the correct business format.
  • summarize important details of the researched organization.
  • Projected copy of Sample Letter (Attachment One)
  • Business size envelopes and stamps


  1. Anticipatory Set: Ask students, "Have you ever received a thank-you letter? How did it make you feel? Have you ever written a thank-you letter? Why?" Some students may not have experienced either so you may need to ask, "How do you think you would feel?"


  2. Begin by showing students a copy of the sample business letter. Discuss the six parts and explain the contents of each part:

    • Heading - date
    • Inside Address - receiver's name and address (same as on envelope)
    • Salutation - Greeting
    • Body - content of letter
    • Closing - ending the letter
    • Signature - signed name, typed name and address below signature
  3. Also, draw a large rectangle on the chalkboard. Write in a return address and receiver's address as it would appear on an envelope.

  4. Students will begin to write their own thank-you letter to the organization they researched in the previous lesson. Content of the paragraphs must include the following:

    • A thank you to the person they interviewed, thanking them for their time.
    • Three facts they learned about the organization.
    • An expression of appreciation for the mission and work of the organization.
  5. Have students will work with peers to edit letters. Students will need one to two days in the computer lab to type the letter (if available) and address the envelope.

  6. Mail the letter!


All six parts of the business letter formatted correctly. Content of letter should clearly show their understanding and appreciation for the organization.


Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 04. Operational Characteristics of Nonprofit Organizations
      1. Benchmark MS.1 State the purpose of a mission statement and describe how civil society organization mission statements relate to philanthropy.
      2. Benchmark MS.2 Describe the basic structure of a civil society organization.