4 answers

How to successfully fundraise for a school club?

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I would like to help my club afford attending different conferences. We are a club centered around STEM majors. We don't know the ins and outs of being sponsored by companies/raising money for the organization. I would greatly appreciate any and all advice. Thank you. #college #university #organization #civic-and-social-organization #non-profit-organization-management #student-clubs #fundraising #money #stem #women-in-tech #sponsorship

4 answers

Karen’s Answer

Updated

Be creative and give donors specifics about where their $ will go, such as first name of student and what conference they will attend with option to cover 1/4, 1/2 or entire amount.  I have asked all volunteers to promote like crazy on their social networks and ask their contacts to donate $10, which is a reasonable request, and have them mention the impact of their $10.  Tell them to keep it short and frequent.  Thanks for all you're doing!

Victoria’s Answer

Updated
Hi Augusta,

This is such a great question! First of all, find out from your counselor, a teacher-sponsor, or your activities coordinator what the actual policy is for student fundraising. Get a copy in writing and abide by that policy. You want to make sure that you account for budgets, money, donations, and other in kind gifts the correct way - this is critical.

Start small at first and be successful. It might be that your school or the local university has a program that already exists or you can attend a virtual conference from your current location. See if you can meet regularly at the cafeteria or a local library or whatever is appropriate for your area. Brainstorm events and figure out budgets. Don't spend money that you do not have.

That said, what you might consider doing is start a volunteer event/program to teach/tutor younger kids in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. Maybe start with a book drive for science books. Start with something that doesn't require a budget but creates value. When you accomplish this goal, make it into an article for the school newspaper or school website.

What you are trying to do is build a track record to show how your work contributes value to the community.
Once you have an event or two accomplished, start inviting mentors/speakers to address your club. Network with other professional who can give you advice. Pretty soon, you will be ready to show that your club is a good investment.

#college #university #organization #civic-and-social-organization #non-profit-organization-management #student-clubs #fundraising #money #stem #women-in-tech #sponsorship

Jan’s Answer

Updated

Hello Augusta, Jayne and Victoria provided great ideas. Especially about school policies and how to position your group as a non profit so that the sponsors can write off their donation if possible. STEM is such an important learning track and many large engineering, tech, and even health care organizations are realizing that they need to invest in their future by investing in yours. Be clear about your goals, the leadership of your team, and cost expectations and matching funds ( you should have some skin in the game also). Be prepared to present your case in what ever format they would like (an in-person presentation or written proposal, etc.) Learning about their fiscal year and philanthropy timeline is important. And when you do get that financial support, establish a plan with the sponsor that meets their expectations for recognition and accountability before, during and after the event. Then, don’t be afraid to discuss future opportunities for continued support, mentoring etc. I wish you all the best!

Jayne’s Answer

Updated
Make sure you have a list on a web site of the conferences you want to attend and the costs of those conferences. Talk about what your club members who attend will do with that knowledge after the conference, so that the benefits extend beyond just the club members that attend. Talk about what each club member or his or her family will be giving - you can't ask people to donate if you yourself aren't willing to. And be aware that most, if not all, of your funding is going to come from family and friends, not from a company or rich individual, so write your appeals thusly. Ask your school counselor if you can use something like GoFundMe for fundraising. Also see http://www.coyotecommunications.com/stuff/fundraise.shtml