raising four thousand dollars: via arts & crafts?

I’m in the beginning stages of my fundraising and feel great, but at the same time I am still overwhelmed. Everyone knows how difficult it is to get into the Boston Marathon, and they’ve made it harder this year for both qualified and charity runners. Starting this year, your qualifying time isn’t good enough (for my age group, the time is 3:40:00; next year it’s 3:35:00). The fastest of the qualifiers get accepted first.  They also raised the fundraising amount to $4,000. Now, neither 3:40:00 nor $4,000 is impossible, but they are both extremely difficult to attain. So for those attempting to go down the charity route, I’ll share some of my methods along the way.

My first attempt: Sending out letters (or cards in my case)

For some reason, I now view letters as impersonal. I can print 100 copies of the same template, sign my name at the bottom, and send away. I’m not that type of person. At first, I tried to search greeting cards that I could send out. I found a few that I liked, but spending more than $50 to send out didn’t seem worth it. If you’re not sending out that many, I would suggest looking at the below sites:

I wasn’t in love with any of them, so I decided to make my own. I can be crafty when times call for it, so I took a trip to Michaels (my local arts and crafts store). I bought cardstock, stickers, and wavy scissors. The Michaels website has instructions, so I played around and came up with this:

I was so proud of my final product, but I realized I hadn’t even thought about mailing them out. So I decided to make my own envelopes. Since I will be promoting my race, I decided to use advertisements from running / health magazines. Seems to be a nice way to send the message.

I still need to actually write in the cards and mail out, but what do you think? What fundraising activities have you done that were successful?

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12 responses to “raising four thousand dollars: via arts & crafts?

  1. I think handmade things ALWAYS have a large effect on people. Fundraising is tough work, I suppose there are about a zillion running (marathon) metaphors waiting to me made right there, but I will let someone else do that ;)…

    Good luck!
    -AB

  2. I’ve been tracking my fundraising on the boston marathon course…which is kind of a fun idea. It was a Dana-Farber idea I stole. “Design a map of your fundraising progress along a 26.2 mile route to create a map for success. Use the map in communications with your donors and on your webpage” I will be writing a blog with this soon!

  3. I’m running the London Marathon in April next year and have to raise £1250 so am struggling for bright fundraising ideas too.

    Going along the home-made route (love the cards and envelopes by the way) I thought I would try a different sort of fundraising, aside from asking for sponsorship. I’m going to offer to make christmas cakes for people at my office – the idea is people like a homemade christmas cake but they don’t have the time to make them, so instead of buying their cake from a shop they can buy them from me for £15 (covering the ingredient cost and the rest to my fundraising pot). They get a homemade christmas cake and they feel good because the money they would have spent at a shop is going to a charitable cause. What do you think? Will I get any take up?

    • I think that’s a great idea! I was actually thinking about bringing cupcakes to work and do some sort of bake sale (reminds me of high school), but starting up some sort of ordering process like you mention makes it sound so much better. I think as a way to start off, bring in whatever baked good you choose to sell, along with a donation box, and set in the pantry. You can leave some sort of information to order a cake (or a dozen cupcakes in my case), just so they can sample before they commit.

  4. I LOVE the wrapping! Such a good idea! I wish I had other tips to give you, but I am not very helpful in this department. Looks like you are off to a great start!

  5. Love the cards and the envelopes! They will definitely get people’s attention when they show up in the mail :) Have you thought about suggesting that people donate money instead of Christmas gifts this year?

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