fundraising ideas

#1 Family First: Parents, Grandparents and extended family are often overlooked as a source of funding support. Since the Rocking Chair Project by definition is “all about family”, it is not surprising that direct appeals from health care professionals to family draw many positive responses. A phone call, email or personalized card is often enough to get the ball rolling.
#2 Live Auction: Ask some local businesses to donate items or gift certificates and hold an auction with an energetic auctioneer at your fundraising event. Good for a large crowd and some big-ticket items: a trip for two, a special bottle of wine, landscape, pool or housecleaning service – the list is endless! Set minimum donation limits and allow people to bid them up.
#3 Benefit Night: Throw a fundraising party at a local establishment. Charge your guests an entrance fee (donation). Also make sure to ask that local restaurant, ice cream parlor, etc. to support you with a donation of 10% (or more!) of the night’s sales. Offer to generate a flyer to promote patrons coming to their establishment to help increase their business, and thus your percentage.
#4 Meet the Press: Contact the editor of your local paper, hospital or Health System newsletter – or both! Ask them to interview you about what your team has undertaken and why, and include a request for support. Be sure to include instructions in the story how readers can make a donation to your team.
#5 Set up a Table at a Local “Hot Spot”: Get permission from a local health club, yoga studio or coffee shop to set up a table inside their establishment, and then ask interested patrons who pass by to support your team. While this doesn’t sound very exciting, it’s very effective.
#6 Special Screening: Ask your local movie theater to donate a special screening of a new release to benefit your team. Invite everyone you know and post flyers. Charge at the door. Ask if the theater will also donate a percentage of the concession sales to your team.
#7 Throw a Pot Luck Dinner Party: Each member of the team can make a dish. Once your guests arrive, start by sharing, during cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, the story of one of the mothers who you intend to receive a glider rocking chair. Why have you chosen her and how will she benefit? Then, talk about why you’re participating. What does this experience mean to you? Finally ask for a show of hands of those who would be willing to sponsor one mom, and provide pledge cards to fill out on the spot.
#8 Hospital Funding: Many hospitals and health system have a variety of small special purpose funds that go under-utilized year to year. Meet with the hospitals chief financial officer to explain the project and ask whether it might be eligible for any special fund support. If not, what other sources might she suggest for funding. Since the ask is relatively small ($250 per chair), institutional small fund support may be a very viable option.
#9 Neighborhood Garage Sale: Nothing says “community” like a neighborhood garage sale – especially one with a great cause. It gives everyone a chance to eliminate those items that have occupied space and gathered dust, and to have a little fun along the way. All members of the family can become involved in transporting, displaying, pricing and selling the items. And the benefits go to providing a new family something that will really benefit mother and child.
#10 Going Back To School: Most elementary and high schools have well-organized programs to support charitable giving. They do require a presentation, but what better way to become involved in your children’s school then describing and promoting a program that will help a newborn baby thrive and grow in a mother’s arms. It’s a beautiful way to set a great example for your children and their friends. And you’ll be surprised how they will run with the ball once they are challenged.