After a valiant four-day effort, I hate to report that I did not make my $1,000 goal, I did not rappel down the side of a 51 story building and I did not get to cross number 16 (bungee) off of My Super Senior Year bucket list.
It’s clear to me now that I was overly optimistic. Raising $1,000 in four days was a long shot, but I honestly believed that nothing would be able to stop me. Super senior luck was not on my side, however I was able to raise around $200 for the Special Olympics, which is a nice consolation prize.
If you attempt to raise an astronomically large sum of money in an absurdly short amount of time, learn from my fundraising successes and failures.
- Ask your friends to support you, mine were incredibly generous and were able to scrounge up money even if we’re all broke college kids.
- Set up a donation website to make it easy for people to give to your cause and for your friends to share with others.
- Set up a table and ask for donations. Instead of trying to sell something at a set price, I bought bags of Hershey’s Kisses and gave them as rewards to anyone who donated. The average donation was $1.00, more than we would have made selling bake goods or something else requiring more money and effort.
- Approach local businesses and ask how they can help. FUEL Pizza allowed me to do a benefit night where a percentage of sales went to my cause. (see the don’t column for added advice on benefit nights)
- Give yourself an unreasonable time limit to meet your goal.
- Fail to plan ahead when you have a benefit night. I attempted to hand out the benefit vouchers at bars on the same night as the benefit. People already had after party plans or were so intoxicated they thought I was saying that I was a Special Olympic participant. Only one voucher was returned to FUEL that night and the only result of that benefit was damage to my pride.
- Be overly pushy when asking for donations. Money is a touchy subject and people get uncomfortable when asked to give it away. If someone says no, thank him or her and move on.
I haven’t given up on marking number 16 off my list. I still have seven months to conquer my fear of heights and bungee jump. If anyone has successfully bungeed in the past and has tips or tricks please let me know!
I would like to thank my friends, especially Gini Arnold, for their generous donations of both time and money. I really couldn’t have made even a small dent in the $1,000 without them.
Tonight, I’m on my way to Chapel Hill to experience a Franklin Street Halloween. This is one I’ve wanted to do since my freshman year of college. Check back on Thursday to see if the two hour trip was worth it.