Fundraising is an optimal part of running a dog rescue organization. Funds are required to assist with all aspects of care including, but not limited to, veterinary bills, food, treats, collars, leashes, bowls, grooming, flea, tick, and heartworm medication, shampoo, beds and toys. Running a successful fundraiser does not have to be stressful. Here are some tips on running a smooth fundraiser for your organization:
- Breweries or Wineries
This is a fun and easy way to raise money. Ask the brewery or winery for a portion of each beer, tasting, growler fill, or wine bottle purchased to be donated to your rescue organization. Some breweries and wineries will let you bring dogs to hang out; it is a great way to raise awareness of your organization while sipping on delicious beers or wines. The last fundraiser I ran at a brewery raised over $450 in four hours. We received $2 for each pint purchased during a set time period and had donation cans located throughout the brewery.
- Dine to Donate
Many chain restaurants have a dine to donate program where a percentage of the total food purchased is donated to your organization. You may have to show a flyer or a ticket for the donation to count. Most restaurants have application forms online; creating a no-hassle progress for the organizer. The dine to donate fundraisers may not bring in an exorbitant amount of money, but little work is involved besides handing out flyers.
- Consultant Events
This is the new wave of fundraising! Companies that sell clothing, essential oils, kitchen utensils, and cosmetics on social media, often have fundraising programs on Facebook! Login to the consultants’ event from the comfort of your own home and shop ‘till you drop. A percentage of all items sold will be donated, and the company may match total proceeds. I have worked with two consultants and we have raised over $500 on Facebook.
- Need food?
Many supermarkets will provide food for your fundraising event. Bring in a 501 (c) (3) paper and a letter stating that you are requesting the supermarket to make a food donation. Some stores will offer you a sandwich or cheese platter, while others will provide you with a gift card to select your own items. Make a sign that reads “Help Yourself to (insert food here), Donations Greatly Appreciated & Accepted” and place a donation jar next to the food you have available. This will encourage people to eat, but also remind them to donate to your rescue organization.
Give yourself six to eight weeks to adequately promote your event through flyers, word of mouth, and social media. Ask the venue or restaurant if you can distribute marketing materials such as pens, pencils, magnets, business cards, dog waste bags and dispensers, and other dog related items. If you are doing a virtual fundraiser, ask if you can do a giveaway. It is also important that you have a clipboard ready to obtain e-mail signups for future adoption events and fundraisers. If you set up a table, make sure you have appropriate signage and a donation jar. All volunteers should look uniform; t-shirts with your organization would help you to stand out amongst the crowd.
- Have fun!
The word fun is in fundraiser for a reason. Mingle with your supporters, bring awareness to dog rescue and your organization, hand out promotional materials, and network to obtain potential adopters, foster parents and volunteers.
Fundraising is key to making sure a constant flow of funds enters the bank account to meet the needs of the dogs in the organization. Assign one or two fundraising coordinators to start planning your next event today!