Friday, March 26, 2010

Fundraising for Dummies

So you've registered for Yoga Unites for Living Beyond Breast Cancer and formed a team. Now you're not sure what to do next.

Fundraising can be a daunting thing, especially if you've never done it before. But there are hundreds of creative ways to fundraise that involve no prior training or skill. We're bringing some of these ideas to you in the hopes that you'll use them to help us raise $200,000 for the nearly 200,000 women that will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year.

1. Hold an event at a local restaurant.
Chances are you frequent a local restaurant regularly. Use this to your advantage and ask them to hold an event to benefit your fundraising team. Or ask them to donate a portion of the sale from a certain item to your team. Most restaurants are happy to help a good cause, especially if it will draw more people to them. Remember Jenna, our program coordinator? She raised over $500 in one evening by hosting an open bar night. Everyone paid $25 to get in and $10 of that went straight to Jenna's team, The Rack Pack.

2. Bag it up.
Let's face it: grocery stores are short-staffed these days. Most of us bag our own groceries, which takes extra time and is an added annoyance to most customers. So why not lend your services for the day? Find your local grocery store and offer to bag for a day (get your whole team involved). Leave tip jars at the registers for customers. Make sure to advertise this event beforehand as many customers will make sure to shop that day.

3. Embrace community organizations.
Visit your church, synagogue, fitness center or yoga studio and see what they can do to help. Maybe you can hold a Saturday morning pancake breakfast at your church and charge people $2 for a plate. Or maybe your fitness center or studio will hold a special, donations-only class to raise money for your team.

4. Use the kids.
Even if you're not a parent, you can still utilize local schools. Some schools will have a dress down day, where kids can pay $1 to wear jeans.

5. If you're good at something, sell it.
Everyone is good at something. If you like painting on the side, consider selling your paintings for a donation. If you like to make jewelry, sell it. If you're an organizer, offer to help someone organize their home in return for a donation. One of our supporters, Judy Herman, loves making chocolate chip banana cakes. Judy spent six days a week baking hundreds of cakes and raised over $5,000 for Living Beyond Breast Cancer. All she did was ask for a $10 donation for each cake.

Our website has lot's of other fundraising tips and tools for you to check out. The key is to look around you. Everyone is involved in some sort of group or organization, whether it be your work, volunteer organization, fitness center, book club, etc. Use these groups to brainstorm ways to raise money in the community.

Last but not least, ask for money. That form of fundraising is just as effective as ever. Write an email (or letter) to people you think may be interested in getting involved or making a donation. Personal stories always tug at people's hearts. Don't underestimate the impact of simply asking for help.

Do you have fundraising ideas of your own? Share them with others by becoming a fan of YU4LBBC on Facebook and following us on Twitter!


  1. That is one of the most incredible feelings on Earth.


  2. I suppose that equally important are fundraising efforts by virtually every recognized religious group throughout the world. These efforts are organized on a local, national, and global level