How to Create a Fundraiser and Have Fun!

This blog is third in a series from Sweet Rides team members Tracy Begley and Therese DeLashmutt. 

When Therese and I talk about what fundraisers we want to do each year there are some basic criteria that they have to meet:

1. Do we have the time and resources available?
2. Do we have an audience to share information about the LIVESTRONG Foundation, AFLAC Cancer Center at Children’s Healthcare and 24 Foundation?
3. We need to have lots of FUN along the way!

Time and Resources

When selecting your fundraiser you have to address the time it will take to implement, and ensuring that you have access to the resources you will need to make your fundraiser a success. 

Not only do you need to consider the date of your fundraiser, you also need to consider items such as the time to plan your fundraising activity.  Most importantly, you need to be realistic with the amount of time you can invest given your available hours.  If you have a demanding job or many other commitments, you may want to select a fundraiser that has a smaller time investment.  You also can’t wait until 2 weeks before the ride to create a fundraiser that is going to take a significant amount of planning, but there all still many options to choose from!

One of the techniques we use to think objectively about a fundraiser is to try and view the fundraiser in business terms.  We imagine the amount of money we fundraise as a paycheck and the hours we invest as our work hours.  We want to maximize the “paycheck” for the amount of hours we have to “go to work”.  You have to decide if it makes sense to work a certain number of hours on a fundraiser given the amount of money you believe you can bring in with that fundraiser. It takes some time and thinking to figure out what works, but with a little planning and estimation, it can be done.

Resources are a vital part to a successful fundraiser. Resources can be the friends, family and teammates that help you out, local businesses, or even 24 Foundation staff.  It can also be  money or items that are needed to carry off a successful fundraiser.  We do our best to get as much as possible donated or with as little cost as possible.

Time and resource availability are the biggest parts to a successful fundraiser.  If this part of the process seems overwhelming to you, turn to trusted friends to help plan and evaluate!

Audience

You can plan the best fundraiser in the world, but you have to make sure you have an audience that will share in your awesomeness! This is key when originally selecting your fundraiser.  Your audience can be people with similar interests or you can create ways to engage the general public.  We are looking for an audience to raise money, but also we want to share information about the organizations that 24 Foundation supports.  Our team has even gone one step further and tried to always include information about getting out and biking with your family and bike safety.  Making sure your event is focused on your audience will ensure success!

FUN!!!

Planning and implementing a fundraiser is a lot of work.  There is a huge pay off, but you will have to put in time and energy to make it a success.  It is most important that as you go through the process you make sure you have fun.  It seems obvious, but if you are not having fun it will be hard to motivate others and be successful.  It is helpful to have friends and family around you to help with the fun factor.  Be silly, act goofy, dress funny, set a theme, have good food and drinks – anything to make you laugh during planning sessions and at the event, then those you meet along the way will want to join you and the craziness!


So plan that last minute fundraiser!  It doesn’t have to be big, but keep these three things in mind!  Our team still has 2 fundraisers to go with less than 2 weeks left.  We know that we will have to work hard, but we promise there will be a lot of Sweet Rides fun along the way!!!