Fundraising Success #15

Fundraising Success #15 Success #15 – Fundraising Success – Issue #15 – Article: “Easy Fundraisers”; Supplier Spotlight: National Scrip Center; Free ebook: “Roswell Testimony”

Issue #15


monthly Column: “Kicking back on Labor Day”

YOUR FREE EBOOK: “Roswell Testimony”  A very interesting read of
portions of the transcripts of witnesses to the crash of a UFO
at Roswell, New Mexico on July 2,1947

BONUS FREEBIE: Free computer company T-shirt.

Details in the SiteSeeing section.


=>  Kimberly’s Column
=>  Reader Q & A
=>  Feature Article: “Easy Fundraisers”
=>  Fundraising Spotlight: “National Scrip Center”
=>  SiteSeeing, freebies & more: “NASA Photo CD” & “T-Shirt”
=>  We want you in an upcoming issue


“Kicking Back on Labor Day”

Just a short column This month because I’m kicking back today.
We’re hosting the neighborhood cookout in our backyard for 25
families, so I’m not going to say too much. (That’s a switch!)

This issue is all about easy fundraisers that keep producing
income for your group every month.  Call it lazy fundraising if
you like, but it’s also smart fundraising.

In talking with a lot of groups, I find that many are anxious to
avoid fundraising burnout.  They don’t want their supporters to
stop giving because of continuous fundraising activity.

That’s why these silent fundraisers are so great.  People forget
that you’re fundraising and see it just doing their part to help

Wow!  Voluntary contributions without being asked.  Talk about
the holy grail of small group fundraising.

Hope everyone enjoys their Labor Day (hopefully labor-less) as
much as I’m planning on doing.

This month’s article is about Easy Fundraisers.  These are ideas
geared toward low-effort fundraisers that don’t set the world on
fire, but don’t take a lot of effort either. Over time, the
money adds up.

The Fundraising Spotlight is on the National Scrip Center.  They
provide one of the easiest silent fundraisers around. Your group
makes money by supplying gift certificates and merchant scrip
that your supporters use for everyday purchases.

This month’s Freebie is a Free CD from NASA.  It’s loaded with
great photos of Earth from outer space, plus the accompanying
activity guide explains five different science fair projects
you can do.

The free ebook is: “Roswell Testimony”  These are portions of
interview transcripts of the key people first on the scene to
investigate the famous July 2, 1947 UFO crash.

Here’s an excerpt from the testimony of Major Jesse Brazel, first
military man to see the wreckage:

“This particular piece of metal was, I would say, about two feet
long and perhaps a foot wide.  See, that stuff weighs nothing,
it’s so thin, it isn’t any thicker than the tinfoil in a pack of
cigarettes.  So I tried to bend the stuff, it wouldn’t bend.  We
even tried making a dent in it with a 16-pound sledge hammer
and there was still no dent in it.”

This month’s Hot Tip is an online “Zip Code Locator”
*—————–HOT TIP——————*
Locate zip codes quickly and easily. Find all the
zip codes within a given area.  Search by city,
county, state, etc.

*—————–HOT TIP——————*

READERS Q & A:  What’s On Your Mind?

Kimberly, We’re trying to put together an online fundraiser. Any
pointers would be greatly appreciated. – Jane G.

Jane, My reply will have to be general without more details. You
can put together a website and offer online shopping.  You can
host an online auction.  You can sell scrip online to your local

It really depends on how much of an audience you can reach and
how much effort you want to put into it.  I’d suggest doing
something that reaches a broader audience versus trying to drive
traffic to your own site.

Consider selling donated goods (new and used) on eBay’s sister
company,  They have some special programs for listing
lots of items at the same time.

All this and more is explained in my book, Fundraising Success!

FEATURE ARTICLE: Easy Fundraisers


by Kimberly Reynolds

Everybody wants an easy fundraiser.  The problem is that you
also want results.

So, how do you get the best results from an easy fundraiser?

Three things to consider:

1) Effort
2) Resources
3) Duration

An easy fundraiser shouldn’t take a lot of effort, but let’s be
honest.  It is going to take SOME effort.

The level of effort is often directly proportional to the size
of your group’s monetary goal, but not always.  That’s why you
are considering an easy fundraiser in the first place – you’re
looking for less effort, not more.

Resources are always a problem in small group fundraising. You
can never have too many volunteers and you usually never have
enough.  For an easy fundraiser, you want programs that don’t
require an excessive time commitment from a large number of

You want either a single monthend only activity or a program
that takes only a small amount of time each month.  It’s easier
to get people to help with something that doesn’t require more
than a two-hour commitment from them.  Conserve your resources
with an easy fundraiser and you’ll have more to draw on later
when you really need help.

Duration is important.  An easy fundraiser that lasts more than
a single monthend should not require a lot of attention to keep
it productive.  Those that only last a single monthend shouldn’t
require a tremendous amount of prep time.

So, what easy fundraisers take only a little effort, few
resources, and have the right duration?

Some simple ones to put together are:

1) Printer cartridge recycling program
2) Onsite or Online Yard Sale
3) Seasonal Specialty Item Sale

A recycling program for collecting used printer cartridges costs
nothing to put together. All collection boxes and shipping needs
are covered by the supplier.

Your effort involves finding businesses to participate in the
program, leaving pre-labeled boxes with a site representative,
and providing directions on calling UPS to pick up a full box.

A used cartridge is worth between $1 and $20, depending on the
popularity of the printer and the cost of a new cartridge.  Many
businesses encourage recycling efforts.  For good prospects,
check with the leasing manager of large office buildings that
house multiple companies.

Another good location is an electronics store or office supply
retailer.  Customers often bring in their old cartridge when
shopping for a replacement.  You are doing the retailer a
service by providing them with an environmentally safe way to
dispose of these leftovers.

A good recycling program will cover a couple of dozen sites and
not require much work after the initial placement.  Over time,
working this many sites can produce a considerable amount of
funds for your group.

A big yard sale is another easy fundraiser to pull off.  It’s
short in duration, usually just a Saturday sale with some prep
time the night before.  Choose a nice high-visibility location
like a school or church parking lot.  Advertise in the local
paper and put up signs for the cagey veterans who troll around
on Saturday mornings looking for bargains.

Group your items together by category – kids clothes, tools,
toys, books, pictures, music, etc.  Place general price signs
around items instead of pricing everything individually. For
example, “$5-$10 Tools” or “Books: $1-$3” are signs that allow
people to haggle and help you avoid putting on hundreds of
price stickers.

Resources are needed most for helping to sell. Recruit outgoing
types who can be enthusiastic about these odds and ends.  Make
it a fun time with some helium balloons for small children and
have coffee/doughnuts available for adults.

By grouping items together from multiple households, you create
a bigger draw as well as a bigger workforce. If you attract
enough shoppers along with enough donations, you can raise as
much as $500 per participating household.

A variation on the yard sale fundraiser is to sell the items
online.  The best place to sell large quantities of lower-priced
items is on  You’ll get more for books, music, and
consumer electronics that way.

Keep it in mind as a way to get better results on some items or
as an easier fundraiser to do for very small groups.  You’ll
need to spend some time creating the listings and having online
pictures posted seems to help with higher-priced items.  All in
all, it’s an easy fundraiser that produces results.

The third type of easy fundraiser is a monthend specialty sale of
a seasonal item.  Examples would be a Pumpkin Patch sale, a
Christmas Tree sale, a Spring Flower Bulb fiesta, and so on.

This involves an effort similar to having a large yard sale.
You’ll need a high-traffic location and some advance publicity.
Your goal is to capture seasonal sales from the general public
as well as those from within your group.

Avoid stretching these sales over more than one monthend or
you’ll run into resource issues.  Make it quick and keep it
fun.  Setup on a Friday, sell hard on Saturday, and wrap it
up by Sunday afternoon.

Make arrangements ahead of time with your supplier about how
to handle left over items.  Source pumpkins from the local
Farmer’s Market, Christmas trees from grower’s associations,
and flower bulbs from national suppliers.

Be sure to price everything competitively and offer great
customer service.  For Christmas trees, have able bodies
standing by to tie them down on vehicles.  For pumpkins,
help place them in the trunk.  The easier you make it for
customers, the more you’ll net for your group.

Putting together an easy fundraiser isn’t hard.  It does take
some effort and it does require resources, but nothing too
difficult.  Give your group a helping hand by taking it easy.


(Excerpt from my book, Fundraising Success!)

Supplier: National Scrip Center
Phone:  (800) 538-1222
Fax: (800) 408-9991
Address: 1745 Copperhill Pkwy
City: Santa Rosa
State:  CA
Zip:  95403

Description: Selling scrip offers non-profit organizations the
opportunity to raise funds without asking anyone to spend a
penny more than they already do.  The NSC currently serves
private, religious and public schools, religious organizations,
service organizations, sports and athletic clubs, charities and
childcare centers.

Instead of asking people to spend additional money on items they
may not want or need, scrip enables people to help your
fundraising efforts while they make their normal purchases.
Scrip is merely “substitute money.”

Scrip, in the form of gift certificates from local and national
merchants, is used just like cash in their stores.  When these
certificates are purchased in advance of shopping, your group
or organization earns a percentage of every purchase made with
scrip.  These local and national merchants contribute 2 to 25
percent of everything purchased with scrip to your organization.

NSC also has an affiliate credit card program via MBNA where 1%
of all purchases made on the cards is rebated to your
organization.  In addition, several hundred merchants also have
programs in place that pay your group an additional percentage
on purchases made with them through these credit cards.

Product Lines: Credit Cards, Gift Certificates, Scrip

Terms: Prepay

SiteSeeing Tip – is a great web resource for finding
out about Urban Legends.  Get the facts on Internet myths and
hoaxes from an authoritative source.


CDC West Nile Virus Info Page
Includes prevention tips, frequently asked questions, case
reports, and more.  Get the facts, not the rumors.


Get the same 21-page report that your lender looks at when
deciding if you’re creditworthy or not.  Avoid the surprises and
fix the mistakes.  Trust me, there are mistakes.
Your choice of a hardware or software company. Nice shirt. I try
these freebies out before I post them. No catch.  Free shipping.



This month it’s – A short, but interesting read
of eyewitness testimony of the first UFO crash back in 1947.

It’s a small PDF file, 64kb download.

That’s all for this issue. See you next month.


We’re always interested in hearing what you have to say
about fundraising. We’d love to publish your article, your
question, your success story, or any other relevant topic
or comment.

Full instructions are on the website. Click on this link:

Thanks for sharing!
Copyright 2004 Kimberly Reynolds

Fundraiser Help – Great Fundraising Ideas
Maximize your fundraising success!

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Donor Recognition – How to use donor recognition to increase your capital campaign results.

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Supplier Listings
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