Getting Started With Your School Fundraiser – Part 1

Summary: Fundraising tips on how to get started with your fundraiser.  Part 1 covers who will do all the work. Recruiting volunteers is essential to your fundraising success, so read these tips on building your organization.

Fundraising is both an art and a science. The first step is always the hardest. Before we begin, let’s back up for a moment and look at the big picture of your fundraiser.

Here are some important points to consider:

After you’ve pondered the who, what, when, where, why and how of your efforts, the realization dawns that a successful fundraiser involves a considerable amount of organization and effort.

The best place to get started is at the beginning. Any home builder worth his salt will tell you that a house is only as good as its foundation.

In a fundraiser, that foundation is your volunteer group.

Who will do all the work?

Build your organization
The first step to getting started is getting organized. Have a master plan mapped out that identifies all key organizational needs. Building a strong organization and not overloading your core group of volunteers are critical success factors.

Get structured
Define your organizational structure. Clearly spell out roles and responsibilities in writing. Amazingly enough, once these are written documents, they can be used repeatedly on future fundraisers with only slight modifications. Sample documents have been provided as part of this book to give you a head start on how to proceed.

Go for experience
Rely on the experienced veterans to fill the key posts. Last year’s worker bees can move up to chair different committees and handle more responsibility this year.

Be proactive
Actively recruit volunteers from your potential supporters. Spell out what skills are needed for each position. Make sure the job description includes an estimate of how many hours this job will require.

Do a skills match
Look for people whose skills match up with the needed tasks. Example: Tap someone with an accounting background or a person who’s balanced a cash register to help tally your orders. They’ll have the eye for detail that’s needed.

Get a running start
Getting volunteers to sign up in advance is crucial. By having an organized staffing plan already written out, you’ll be able to solicit the right type of help and offer clearly defined requirements.

Let them know
People will be more likely to volunteer if they know what they’re signing up for.

Example: A four-hour shift on a Saturday delivery day or a commitment for two evenings of tallying orders.

Click here for Getting Started – Part 2