Community, Crowdfunding, Electronic Giving Soulution

The Power of Philanthropy

Peer-to-peer fundraising occurs when an organization recruits existing donors and volunteers to fundraise for the nonprofit’s cause by reaching out to friends and family members through social media and email.

Fueled by their passion for your cause, each donor or volunteer creates their own fundraising page and sends the URL out via social media platforms and email. Their peers can donate via their page, and all donations are funneled into the nonprofit’s main donation page. 

Peer-to-peer fundraising usually takes place in conjunction with an active event, such as a walkathon or marathon (but not always!). It is unique, engaging and FUN, which is why it’s the fundraising method many organizations turn towards.

As the fundraising landscape has evolved Stewardship has been there with new philanthropy solutions to help our members stay on top of trends. Late last year Stewardship introduced our peer-to-peer fundraising platform togetherweraise. This extension of Stewardship’s all-in-one donation management platform EGS provides members a new way to fundraise in a modern giving landscape. NOW to make things even more flexible, Stewardship is offering this solution in Canada and the United Kingdom.

To learn more about fundraising and Stewardship’s peer-to-peer fundraising solution, contact us directly at 866.604.8880 or message us below with your questions. Reach out anytime – we’re here to help!

Community, Crowdfunding

Fundraising for Summer Camps & Retreats

Whether you are raising funds for your general fund or for your next mission trip, fundraising is an important part of faith communities. You know what annual fundraising efforts work in your community and your community is always there to support, but what about those other events like summer camps or retreats that arise outside of your annual fundraising goals?

Summertime gives us all that itch to explore the beautiful outdoors and meet new friends. However, reaching those camps or retreats can be costly and for most these expenses are not in your annual fundraising goals. To help your community raise funds this summer, Stewardship Technology has created our list of fundraising ideas to help your members raise those funds to be able to afford those summer camps and retreats.

So, sit back, grab a glass of cold lemonade, and take in the possibilities this summer with our 8 Tips to Funding your Summer Camps and Retreats.

Join us LIVE Thursday June 13th at 2:00 PM for our Thought Leader Webinar Fundraising Camps and Retreats. Register Here.

1. International Food Day

For an international food day fundraiser, each member of your youth group or Sunday school class will bring in a dish from a different culture of where they intend to travel to for their mission trip. Other church members will pay a small entrance fee to come and try all the tasty treats from around the world.

International food days are an excellent way to teach youth and adults about diversity and beauty to prepare them for camps and mission trips around the world.

2. Bike-A-Thon

Active mission teams are a perfect fit for a bike-a-thon fundraiser. Much like a marathon, bike-a-thons are pledge based. Donors pledge per mile that the youth group bikes during the fundraising event.

This church fundraising ideas allows your mission team members to bike as long or short as they would like. The point is to have fun, raise money, and stay active.

3. Letter Writing Campaign

A classic mission trip fundraiser: the old-fashioned letter writing campaign. It probably goes without saying, but the real key to a successful letter writing campaign is a well-written letter. 

A strong, meaningful message is sure to take your letters to the next level and help your church’s mission team meet its goal in no time.

Always remember to say “thank you” in the letter. Regardless of whether or not they donate, the recipients of your letter have taken time out of their day to read your letter.

4. Charity Car Wash

Much like yard sales, car washes take little to no effort to plan and set up. This fundraiser’s always best to do during the summer, but if you’re having an unseasonably warm fall, you probably won’t find quite as much competition. Also, a lot of time if you hold the car wash at a local supermarket or business, the business will match the donations that come in from the fundraiser.

You really only need a few members of the church to volunteer to wash the cars, a couple to advertise by the side of the road, and some basic car-cleaning supplies.

5. Balloon Count

Much like a jar guessing game, a balloon count involves participants paying to guess how many balloons are stuffed into a car. The person who comes the closest to guessing the number of balloons in the car will win a prize of the pastor’s choosing.

Choose a time and location for the fundraiser and blow up as many balloons as you possibly can. Then, charge $1 per guess as to how many are in a car. For extra fun, try to cram as many balloons as possible into your pastor’s car.

6. Create A Cookbook

Your congregation is full of some of the most talented cooks in town! Let them share their favorite recipes with the rest of the church. Have your church members compile recipes they’ve created or been passed down into a unique church cookbook.

Once you have enough recipes to fill up a book, you can pretty easily get it bound with pictures and neat type. Its that simple. Sell them all summer long and even into the holiday months to help fund your mission trips and camps.

7. Smoothie Stand

A twist on the traditional lemonade stand, a smoothie stand is a fabulous idea for your church’s next mission trip or camp fundraiser. Who doesn’t love a fresh fruit smoothie on a hot summer day?

You can make the smoothies beforehand, or you can make them fresh-to-order by bringing an extension cord and a portable power source to your smoothie stand location. Set up on a warm, sunny day when everyone’s out and about on the street or set up the stand as a booth at your local summer festival.

8. Pink Flamingo

Pink flamingo fundraisers are an easy way to get your neighborhood involved with your church’s fundraising. All it takes is an obnoxious pink flamingo lawn ornament and note with contact information attached.

The younger members of your congregation will have a blast planting the flamingo in other church members’ yards and forcing them to donate a given amount of “ransom” money to have the flamingo removed from their yards. Add some fun to it too, add your youth members donation page to share what their camp mission is this summer.

Here are some tips for youth members to manage on their own.

1. Classic Lemonade Stand

It’s a hot summer day. Nothing is quite as refreshing as an ice-cold glass of freshly squeezed lemonade. This may seem like an old-fashioned fundraiser, but it’s one that’s withstood the test of time. And for good reason!

Find a recipe for lemonade and whip up as much as you can ahead of time. When you’re setting up your stand, be sure to enlist the help of your most artistic Sunday school student to make some signs. Pick a busy area and start selling. 

2. Pie In The Face

This fundraiser is super simple (some might even say, it’s as easy as pie!)–if your pastor is on board with being pied in the face.

At the beginning of the event, sell as many tickets as church members and Sunday schoolers are willing to buy. Those tickets will then go into a drawing bucket. A ticket is drawn and the lucky ticket holder gets to run up on stage and throw a whipped cream pie right in the pastor’s face.

3. Kickball League

You don’t have to be particularly skilled to play kickball, but it sure is fun for all ages! Divide your church up into teams and have your members pay a small entrance fee to be a part of your “league” and to play in your “tournament.”

You can have a set of trophies made up for the winners of your tournament. Other than these trophies, kickball is a very inexpensive fundraiser. You can play almost anywhere as long as there is enough space.

Questions setting up your fundraiser?

Reach out anytime – we’re ready to help.

866.604.8880

Community, Crowdfunding

5 Tips for 5Ks

By Julianne Manning, Stewardship Technology – May 22, 2019

The great thing about 5ks is that they have the potential to attract both people who are excited about your mission and those who are excited about fitness.  You can have different levels of competition which makes it easy for anyone to participate. Below are 5 easy tips to help you put on a successful 5K.

Tip #1: Community Engagement!

If you are having the 5K down the main drag in your community get everyone involved! Invite the local shops to open their doors and have an open house while the 5k is going on. Encourage the local bakery to give out samples. Encourage the local stationary story to hand out pens. This creates an atmosphere of community and helps even the bystanders to get involved in the fun.

Tip #2: Think both “In” and “Out” side the box!

The best things about 5ks are that they can happen anywhere. Including your local mall. You don’t have to worry about the weather and it gives the mall the opportunity to get more foot traffic. It also helps to draw curious bystanders to your mission.

Tip #3: Sponsorship’s!

Just thinking about a 5k makes me thirsty. What a perfect opportunity to have a sponsor come to my rescue. Having sponsored water stations throughout the race is a practical way to get sponsors involved and it will help to quench everyone’s thirst.

Tip #4: Make it a Family Affair!

Life is now busier than ever, so who has time to get a babysitter. 5ks can be involved the whole family! Not only does this help parents to want to participate, it helps to instill a sense of community and mission for their children.

Tip #5: Promote! Promote! Promote!

Think social media but also put flyers in your local shops, signs by major intersections, advertise on your local community board. Getting the word out is important but it doesn’t have to be hard!

Community, Crowdfunding, Electronic Giving Soulution, Online Donations, Peer to Peer Funding

Event Fundraising 101

Event Fundraising 101 Webinar

Event Fundraising 101

Most nonprofits and community benefit organizations have one annual signature event or host several events throughout the year. While they are an important part of their fundraising plan for both revenue and awareness, a big fundraising event should not be an end in and of itself.

Why Not?

Events hold the potential to significantly expand an organization’s traditional FUNdraising pipelines. A carefully planned strategic approach can convert event donors into annual givers, major gift donors, and even planned gift donors.

The Upside of Events

We all know successful events can bring in much-needed money and support a nonprofit’s need to grow its organization. They’re also great for building awareness of your mission by engaging with potential new groups of people and bringing the community together to support a common cause.

The Downside of Events

Special events do tend to have a higher cost to them, and often provide a much lower return on investment. Conventional wisdom says that it will typically cost you $.50 to raise just one dollar in a fundraising event!

Because of the time, effort and energy that go into these events, volunteers and staff can burn out quickly. This leads to higher turnover and less enthusiasm for participation in future events.

Events can also be risky, unpredictable, and don’t always make money at first. For instance, if you’re doing an outdoor event, the weather can be unpredictable. Consider what would happen if your fundraising event was rained out? What would your backup plan be next? Along that same vein, what if you invest a lot of resources into putting on an auction and it garners very little activity?

Event Donors vs. Organizational Donors

As you begin thinking about and planning for your next fundraising event, your strategy should be focused around bringing as many organizational donors to the event as possible. These are the diehards that support your organization and will continue to contribute and support you long after the event has passed. This is in stark contrast to those event donors who were likely invited to the event by a friend — those who reluctantly donate out of obligation as a one-time thing.

Leveraging Events into Larger Gifts

OK, so how can you use your event to get people to give in the future? Below are eight quick ideas to get you started.

  1. Collect as much data as possible – use every opportunity you can to gather the basics, like first and last names, email addresses, and mailing addresses. You can do this by having cards available for people to fill out, or even a simple email address sign-up sheet available at the event check-in. This is a big missed opportunity if you’re not having this as an option for your event participants.
  2. Educate participants – be sure to do all you can about giving people as much information as possible about your mission and the work you do.
  3. Choose the right fundraiser – pick an event that has more opportunity to engage potential donors at a deeper level. Don’t just pick an event because it’s fun and it will draw crowds. You don’t want people going there because it’s casino-themed, do you? They might just play and leave and not learn anything about your organization. Seek intimacy and engagement when you plan your event.
  4. Find ways to get your current donors more involved – as they get more involved, they’ll be more inclined to support your organization down the road. Put them on committees to plan the event, or make them volunteers as table hosts or sponsors.
  5. Publicly recognize donors – as you recognize key donors at your event, you’ll be surprised how many people will look to that and get excited about giving. Treat your donors well, and they’ll give more!
  6. Say thanks – this is a no brainer. You can never thank too much. Thank everyone from the volunteers and vendors to the participants and donors. Let them know you appreciate them.
  7. Follow up after your event – sharing the results with a video is a fantastic way to spread the word and hopefully gain new interest in your mission.
  8. Embrace and utilize technology – ask people to give through an app of yours, subscribe to your website’s newsletter, or get them to follow you on social media.

Final Thoughts

Your event should not just be an event. It’s an opportunity to move donors along a relationship continuum. Give them a “what’s next” opportunity as it relates to their involvement with your organization. If you do this, you could see them contributing to your organization for years down the road!

For additional fundraising tips, contact our fundraising experts today

Reach out anytime – we’re here to help.

Community, Crowdfunding, Electronic Giving Soulution, Peer to Peer Funding

Spring Fundraising Ideas to Freshen Up your Fundraiser

ON- DEMAND WEBINAR – Spring Fundraising WATCH NOW

Spring Fundraising Ideas to Freshen Up your Fundraiser

Spring is in the air! Warmer weather plus a feeling of renewed energy means that people are once again looking to engage with the world. All of this makes spring a great time to freshen up your fundraiser or launch a new one. Spring is also the perfect time to host an event—check out our helpful tips for hosting a successful fundraising event. Take a look at these spring fundraising ideas and choose one or more to make your fundraiser blossom.

Spring fundraising event ideas

1. College basketball

For college basketball fans, March means March Madness—the NCAA playoffs. It’s a great time to invite your supporters to enter a basketball bracket in exchange for a donation to your cause. For the tournament semifinals or finals, host a game-watching party. As two teams go head to head, make things more interesting by asking people to pledge donations each time a specific event happens in the game—a lead at the end of a quarter, a minimum point total for a particular player in a quarter, free-throw percentages, number of fouls, a certain player getting ejected, etc. This not only makes it a lot of fun to watch—it’s a slam-dunk for your fundraiser.

family with children

2. April Fool’s for good

Everyone’s wary of playing the fool on April 1. Use the day for good by hosting a prank-a-thon. Come up with a fun title such as Random Pranks of Kindness. Write up a list of sweet, compassionate, and funny “tricks”—for example, covering the target’s car with kind or silly notes, or filling a friend’s shoes or a coworker’s desk drawers with a pleasant surprise like flowers or candy. Once you have a list of nice pranks, circulate it among friends, family, and colleagues. Have people sign up for specific pranks on behalf of loved ones, and name their price. All money raised goes to your fundraiser, of course.

easter eggs

3. Easter egg treasure hunt

At a local park or in your own yard, host an Easter egg hunt to raise awareness of your cause and funds for your fundraiser. Add fun and festive activities—make a list of clues for people to figure out, then fill plastic eggs with sweet treats and riddles for where to look next. At your entrance table, have a sign-in sheet so people can opt in for updates and other communications about your cause. Have participants pay a small fee to enter the hunt, with proceeds going to your fundraiser. You can also take advantage of the perks of mobile giving—have a smartphone or tablet ready with your donation page on display, and accept direct donations on site.

hands in a circle

4. Tree planting

This is a great option if your cause is related to climate change or environmental issues. Celebrate Arbor Day (April 26) by planting new flora around your neighborhood. In the weeks leading up to Arbor Day, ask for pledges from supporters. Get volunteers to join you as planters. You could also have volunteer planters secure pledges from friends and family. Accept donations of seedlings and other plantable items, ideally native plants. If you plant on private property, ask the owners for a donation to your cause in exchange for the plantings. If you plant on public property, such as in a park, be sure to get permission from local authorities. Make a festive day of it and have a mobile device on hand to collect donations from visitors to the park.

children in garden

5. Garden party

Another great opportunity for environmental causes is Earth Day, April 22. It’s the perfect day for a party where everyone comes together to plant a garden. Pick a site, such as a communal area at a park or a neglected lot, and invite the neighborhood to make it beautiful. For a donation to your fundraiser, provide a plant, such as herbs, flowers, or shrubbery, and the supplies to get a garden growing. See Arbor Day above for related ideas.

woman on roof

6. National Volunteer Week

The last week in April is National Volunteer Week. Many organizations offer special volunteer events across the country, and you can do the same for your fundraiser. This is a great week to leverage the work of volunteers into a major fundraising win. One option: check with a local high school or college to see if you can coordinate an event where students volunteer in support of your cause. It could be as simple as a car wash, or something more elaborate. The event then becomes your fundraising opportunity.

mother and daughter

7. Mother’s Day tea

If your cause is related to advancing the causes of women and children, Mother’s Day can be a great opportunity for a fundraising event. A tea time is a perfect option for spring. Set it up at in an outdoor or indoor space with decorations, a variety of teas and treats, and a table where people can learn about your fundraiser and make a donation. Using a mobile device, you and attendees can quickly make donations.

man at bbq

8. Memorial Day barbecue

Memorial Day weekend is a great opportunity to host a community event. You might include outdoor games—ring toss, sack races, even a huge Jenga game. Serve food donated by local restaurants. Ask a live band to provide music (if your fundraiser supports schools, why not include the school band?). Events held on long holiday weekends are usually well attended. Create flyers with information about your fundraiser and leave them around town and at the park or venue where your event will happen. A large poster at a central location is also a great way to spread information—especially if the poster is something people want to take a picture of or with, to post on social media.

Virtual fundraising ideas for spring

clothing on hangers

9. Garage sale

With spring cleaning comes an excellent opportunity for online and in-person garage sales to raise money for your cause. Create an event page on a neighborhood site, such as Nextdoor, and invite your community to donate and/or buy items. Add pictures and prices for each item. Create conversations about interesting pieces. Share your listings on social media. You can also hold a classic in-person garage sale, separately or in conjunction with your online sale. In either case, let people know that all sales benefit your fundraiser—include the name of your fundraiser and links to the donation page wherever possible.

produce sale

10. Produce sale

Warm weather is a time for bounty—and just as fruits and veggies come into season, so do the opportunities for fundraising with them. Partner with local farms or produce stands to get food at wholesale prices, then create special produce bundles to sell in exchange for donations to your fundraiser. Once you get donors, schedule a time to drop off the bundles along with a flyer containing details about your fundraiser.

candy

11. Easter candy bundles

Sweeten the deal for donors with a gift of Easter candy for each donation. Before the Easter season, promote your event. Spread the word in person at your workplace, schools, community centers, and other community hubs. Once you’ve secured a list of donors, create baskets of treats to drop off. Play Easter Bunny for the day and watch your donations multiply.

puppy

12. Pet photo contest

Say cheese to a fundraising idea that engages supporters in a new way. National Pet Day is April 11 and National Pet Week is in May—why not celebrate with a photo contest featuring your supporters’ pets? Create special categories like funniest pair, most adorable, most aloof, best dressed, most exuberant, etc. Post pictures of the candidates and the winners on social media so everyone gets a chance to shine.

Do you want additional information on how your organization can get started with fundraisers or how to start a fundraising donation campaign? Complete the form below and our Mission Advocates will contact you directly to set up your next fundraiser.

We’re here to help- reach out anytime.

866.604.8880