Creative Charity

"Food For A Cause"One of the reasons I love writing Win Win blogs is that we writers are encouraged to write about our passions. So I’m shamelessly taking this opportunity to share my passion for fundraising, my charity fundraising ideas, and to solicit you, the reader, for even more creative fundraising ideas. The more we share ideas, the more we can do together!

Whether you’re raising money for charity for the first time, or you’re a veteran, there are always challenges to meeting your fundraising goals. The first challenge, and the greatest in my opinion, is realizing that everyone may not share your passion for the worthy cause you’re promoting. Some people will care and will help, but many have their own causes.

I say this because realizing this key fact can actually help you accomplish your goals; it also highlights the need for creative fundraising ideas.

Don’t be disappointed if you hear “no” when requesting that someone give to your charity. At the same time, there are people who want to say yes, and it’s your job find them.

Charity Fundraising Ideas: Setting Goals

Start by charting your personal fundraising goal. Track your goals and accomplishments using a calendar or a handmade poster. Charting your goal will help you visualize what you’ve done and what’s left to do. It’s also very motivating.

"Alex's Lemonade"Creative Charity Fundraising Ideas

1. Do you have a birthday coming or a holiday? I recently went to a thirteen-year-old boy’s birthday party. He requested that instead of gifts, donations be made to his favorite charity. WOW! That’s a great idea. He raised a lot of money for his charity and gift givers were more than happy to give.

2. Have a benefit yard sale. I love this idea because everybody wins! Ask people in your neighborhood to donate items to your yard sale. Start collecting items a week or two before the event. Advertise in the yard sale section of your newspaper and on craigslist. I’ve personally used this fundraising technique and have raised hundreds of dollars in one morning.

3. Take it to the Internet. If your charity has a website that dedicates pages to individual fundraising partners, take advantage of it. If your charity doesn’t offer this, then suggest it to their fundraising department.  The Internet is a powerful tool for letting the world know about your charity. With a fundraising web page, you can link to from your Facebook page, you’ll make it easy for people who want to give.

4. Take advantage of your talents. Do you have a special talent you could share with the world and raise money for you charity at the same time? If your talent is cooking handmade pasta from scratch, host a pasta making party. For say $25, guests can attend, learn to make pasta and have a meal to boot. You could do this for candy or chocolate making, scrap booking, or whatever talent you want to share.

5. Have a benefit home concert. This isn’t nearly as hard as it sounds. If you know a talented guitar player, pianist, or group of musicians, ask if they might play a small gig for your charity. (You could even host a talent show). If you have room in your home, host your informal concert there. If not, ask a local coffee house, or your church if they might be willing to host the concert. Ask for a minimum donation from guests. Guest will enjoy a night of entertainment and serve a good cause at the same time.

6. Create a letter-writing campaign. Most charities will help you compose a letter to send to friends and relatives asking for donations to the charity. If you do a letter-writing campaign, make it easy on the recipient by including a self-addressed stamped envelope. Also, hand write recipients’ addresses so that letters aren’t mistaken for junk mail. The more personalized your letters, the better.

7. Take advantage of seasonal purchase trends (while raising money for charity). For example, Easter gives special opportunities for fundraising. Many people already purchase flowers or candy for this holiday.  One year I was fundraising for a mission trip. Since I once worked in a floral shop and knew how to make flower arrangements, my team and I made well over 100 fresh arrangements. We took orders weeks in advance. They cost us about $2 to make and we sold them at church for $10 (the going rate at any grocery store). Since people already buy fresh flowers, we were serving a need.  You could do this with chocolates at Valentine’s Day, wreaths at Christmas, or stuffing mix at Thanksgiving.

8. Make a change by collecting change. If you know a local shop owner who is willing to place a tip jar near their register, this fundraising idea can really add up. Make an attractive display for your charity tip jar so that people who want to give their spare change have the opportunity.

Whether you’re raising money for a church project, cancer research, school, or community project, these charity fundraising ideas will help you meet your personal fundraising goals. The charity fundraising ideas listed here are primarily for individuals with fundraising goals, but professional fundraisers may find ideas to inspire them as well.

So now… TELL ME… what are your creative fundraising ideas???

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