By: Hira T. Khan | Keeper of the Blog | Thaakat Foundation
Full disclosure: The prospect of fundraising has always made me cringe.
I know that every charity spends a considerable amount of its resources on raising money for various projects, but as integral as fundraising is to charity work, it has always been my least favorite part. I think I am finally beginning to understand why.
When I was young, fundraising meant lemonade stands and bake sales, you know, the regular standbys. I lived by the motto that only someone without a soul could resist the temptation of sugary goodness. But then, in college, when I began my four-year-long relationship with Northwestern University’s Dance Marathon (NUDM), fundraising meant canning in the cold at basketball games and writing solicitation letters to friends, family, and everyone you had ever known.
Basically, different stages in my life offered different specifications for exactly how you should fundraise. It was these specifications that made the entire process rather…boring. What I needed was a way to spice up my fundraising options.
Now don’t get me wrong, these tried and true methods of fundraising were effective, but when everyone starts doing the same things to raise money, it becomes harder to generate interest in your cause. This is why you need to get creative.
Here are some ways others have gotten creative:
– In college, the organic chemistry lab professor was well-known for his no-nonsense attitude. To raise money and awareness for NUDM, a freshman interrupted this professor’s lecture dressed in a chicken suit and dancing the chicken dance! When he finally got fed up with the prank, the professor jumped over a lab bench and tackled the guy as he ran out the door.
– This year for NUDM, one dancer promised to get his eyebrows professionally done if he raised $500, shave them off if he raised $1000, and shave only one if he raised $1500. By the looks of things right now, he will be getting them professionally done. I hear he’ll be posting a video of the event!
– St. Baldrick’s Foundation holds events around the country where people shave their heads to raise money to help kids with cancer. To date, over 189,660 volunteers – including 17,200 women – have shaved their heads for the cause.
How will YOU get creative?