Friday, August 13, 2010

BBQ fundraiser

I (Jennifer Pletcher) held a BBQ fundraiser this past summer for the first time.  It wasn't much work, and a lot of fun!  We wanted to include our family in friends in an event, so for $25/person ($50/family -  no matter what size) we gave everyone a BBQ lunch, drink, dessert, and a Finley's Fighters magnet.  Plus I brailled a Finley's Fighters bookmark for every person who wanted one.

We started advertising in about May.  I made a simple flier on my computer and we passed it out/mailed it to our family and friends.  And they told their family and friends.  I posted it on my blog.  We made a simple Google website where people could sign up right on line if they wanted to.  We put an article in the local paper about Finley and our BBQ.

We set up in my parent's backyard.  We had over 100 people RSVP, and expected some walk ins as well (both were welcome).  We had family volunteers make the food, and help us set it up.  It cost us about $200 to feed over 100 people.  Not bad!

Profit - over $5000.  You will find that even people who cannot come to the BBQ will want to donate.  We got about $2000 of that $5000 in the mail around the time of the BBQ from people who were away and couldn't attend.

I sent thank you cards to everyone (and magnets to anyone who couldn't get one that day).  Many people put those magnets on their fridge and on their car, and since then we have gotten more donations, and more awareness!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Tips donated from restaurant

Tips donated from restaurant – We have had two of these. Our two friends (each on different occasions, and different restarurants) asked if we could do a “Gavin’s Groupies” night. In doing so, they would donate ALL of their personal tips from that night. In total, we received about $1,500! It works great, because if you get someone willing to do so, you can bring the restaurant some business and exposure. In turn, the generous person donating their tips, may even get recurring customers.

Get the restaurant/bars ok and put up info about what the money is going towards.  Ours was VisionWalk, so we had flyers.  All with Gavin's picture and story.  We even got a $200 tip/donation from one table!
(Total raised was about $1,476)

*Again use Facebook/eVite to create the event, so friends can also pass around the info via the web.

Restaurant Night

Restaurant night – We have had a few of these. You bring people in to a restaurant, and you get a percentage of the total sales back towards your charity. This is even better when you do not have to have the people bring in the flyer. Get a group together, even talk to people around you who are already eating in the restaurant and ask them to mention the charity upon paying. This is how most of ours worked, and it worked great. We found some restaraunts who will give you up to 25% of the total bill sales.

Use Facebook to create the event, and share with your friends, and ask your friends to do the same.  You can also create an eVite via email and email all your friends/family, and ask them to pass it along.  I always tell people, "you have to eat dinner anyways, why not help us out while doing so!"

(We have made $250-$1000)

Flyers for independent sales consultants

Flyers for independent sales consultants - People in my family are independent consultansts (Avon, Jewelry, etc..) I made a personal letter from them asking for others help and it had info from VisionWalk, FFB and our team page (as well as Gavin’s info). They just include it in their catalogs, and we have had people at their parties ask about VisionWalk, as well as had a handful sign up! It’s so easy to do this. Next year I am going to advertise to all the consultants I know if I can provide them with the flyers if they would include it in their catalogs. It’s so easy.

Home business parties

Scentsy Candles (or Pampered Chef, etc) – You can find someone who has their home business and ask if they would do a fundraiser for you. Typically, they would not make a commission, but donate a portion of their sales towards your organization. Some who do those are people who sell candles, pampered chef, AVON, jewelry, and the list goes on. You can even have your own boutique and incorporate all of these businesses, and provide a little snack/drink to your customers. Pick a day after work, so people can swing by on their way home, sometimes weekends are the best days for these types of events.

(We made $120 off one party with one business)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Rubber Wristbands

Rubber Wristbands – We had these made last year, and already need to order another 1,000! They are the rubber wristbands with "Gavin's Groupies" embossed on them.  We sell them at our events (or people are allowed to have one with each donation of at least $3). People like to wear these!  Many times people have asked what the wristband is for, and I have taken mine off and given it to them, just to raise awareness.  We also put them in each of the golfers golf bag at our golf tournament.

Picture of us wearing them is here.

*Roughly $1,500 made.  Cost is having to front the out of pocket expense.

Rummage/Bake Sale

Rummage/Bake Sale – This worked like a charm!  We worded it at such, "help a great cause and don’t do anything!" So we asked people to have us take their junk off their hands! We did the pick up of the stuff, and some people dropped it off to the house in which the sale was held.  With that, we advertised if anyone wanted to participate in the bake sale, they could. We wrapped the goodies in cellophane, with bright orange ribbon (our team color), and attaching a little tag with our website for VisionWalk. We got it cleared with the city if we don’t sell the baked goods, but rather call it a donation price for each of the baked items. This way we didn’t have to pay for the city permits. This takes people in your circle who have trucks to pick up stuff and a garage big enough to store it. We also advertised it for free in the paper, and had a table with more flyers for VisionWalk and a donation can, to try to recruit more walkers.

*We raised $2,400.  Only out of pocket cost was the cellophane/ribbon, signs for sale.

Night Without Light

Night without Light – LOTS of work, but so worth it.  We labeled this is as a “thank you” dinner for all of our donors to date (who donated at least $25). Of course, you get people who hear about it, who have not already donated, and they want to donate to get invited. Worked like a charm! We also had our donation jar there, and we also handed out our flyers and we talked about LCA and Gavin for 10 minutes prior to the dinner.  We had picture boards of past 'Gavin's Groupies' events.  We wanted our guests to get in the mode of the inspiration behind the event. My blog is called “Every child should be able to see a Sunset”, and we had a cocktail served that night called a Sunset. This drink cost $3, but we pulled in about $100 from tips from this drink!

The key with this, was we wanted it to be pitch black.  This took some work sealing up the windows, as well as a "holding area" where our servers could run the food that also had to be pitch black, and sealed properly. Each guest got a dinner booklet that we made, and we sold our 'Gavin's Groupies' and wristbands at a table as the guest left.  ($2,000 total raised)

Pictures are here.