Staff here in the Foundation receive a small monthly allowance and often need to be creative to fund their travel to visit family or attend conferences etc., so we understand the financial restraints that people in other communities might also be experiencing.
We aim to co-create a wonderfully diverse Gathering, with participants from each continent, all sharing their ideas, wisdom and experience, and believe that everyone who is called to come will find a way to make their vision possible.
FF programmes offer income related prices, to help make a visit here affordable for all, and you can also apply for a bursary which will reduce your costs to an extent. However, depending on your financial circumstances this may not be enough and this is where the fundraising ideas come in…
With all fundraising ideas, some key elements to consider are:
- How will your participation in the Gathering make a tangible difference to your Holistic Centre?
- What will you bring back from the experience to share with your community?
- How will your involvement in the Gathering enhance your holistic work?
Some suggestions to raise funds include:
- Identify potential sponsors (both corporate and individual)
- If your holistic centre has a website, offer to promote the sponsors on the site in exchange for sponsorship – offer them something tangible in return for their investment
- Identify local / national grant-givers / trusts in your country of origin eg. Grundtvig funding and view the list of National Agencies for lifelong learning (note you need to apply well in advance, so do your research now!)
- Design and display a poster in your centre explaining your intention and encouraging support
- Organise an event with the support of your holistic centre (see ideas below)
- Contact your local media – if they can create a story that has a personal/human element and that also includes images, they are the most powerful and the most likely to be published
- If your centre has an email list or a newsletter, let people know that your centre wants to send a representative / or you aim to attend the Gathering and invite support, either directly or through a fundraising event, or both!
- If your centre has a website, promote the Gathering on the website, tell the story, tell people that you would love to attend and why, and then ask for support (this might be in the form of donations or other ideas)
Fundraising events are a great way to raise money and can be great fun for you, your friends and supporters, all for a great cause. If you organise an event as a team and the team invites all their friends and colleagues it’s usually possible to gather a good crowd. Your community or local festivals offer a great captive audience!
Invite your friends for an evening meal and charge them for the pleasure of being your guest! You could make it a potluck meal where everyone brings a dish (when you invite friends, specify if you’d like them to bring entrée, main or dessert). It makes it interesting to have a special theme eg. Indian, Hawaiian or Mexican.
You might remember this one from your schooldays? It brings out the inner child in people and is good for a giggle! Get a large jar and fill it with sweets, coins or something unusual and take it around to show friends and family in community. Invite them to guess how many objects are in the jar and charge for each guess. Then announce the winner of the jar and all it’s contents at a specified time (eg. the end of the day or one week later).
Choose a great movie, eg. one connected to your fundraising cause, arrange a venue, a slide projector and screen, and lots of chairs and cushions (or encourage people to bring their own). Invite your friends and family to a night at the movies and collect donations on the door. Choose a film you know your friends will want to see and a night of the week when most of them are free or when there aren’t too many other events vying for their attention. Email invitations and display posters around your community with a few weeks notice and encourage people to come when you see them. Word of mouth is always great advertising and makes it more personal.
Trivia Quiz or Music Night
Organise a fun night in your community centre with trivia teams, word games, or musical entertainment. Charge people an entry fee and pass the hat around when they are inside also for extra donations when everyone is enjoying themselves. It’s a good idea to have an MC who is relaxed and entertaining and can keep the evening flowing and generate more interest in your reason for fundraising. Think about the snowball effect!
Raffle or Auction
Ask friends and family if they would like to donate a gift or service (eg. second hand books or a one-hour massage. Or if you have a special skill such as candle making or pottery, arrange a display of your work. Sell raffle tickets or arrange an auction if you know someone who has the skills and willingness to be involved!
Yoga or Dance
If you’re a teacher of yoga or dance (or any other group activity) or have a friend that’s willing to donate their time, arrange a special class or evening when all the donations go towards your fundraising cause. You’re raising funds and contributing to the health and well being of others!
Home Made Cakes
Everyone loves a delicious homemade cake! Encourage a few friends to get together for a baking and have fun making a range of cakes and sweets (including wheat free, dairy free and sugar free options to ensure there’s something for everyone!) Cut them into reasonable size slices and take a trestle table and recyled paper plates to the village green or community centre (or wherever the heart of your community might be, choose a popular time, when people have more free time to stop and chat (eg. Sunday brunch).
These are just are few ideas to stimulate your creativity, that can be tailored to suit the uniqueness of your community.
Click here to download the PDF: Fundraising – Useful Websites
Promote your event in plenty of time to maximise it’s potential, eg. word of mouth, posters, email, website, local and community news. Raise awareness of your intention to fundraise, include why, when and where!
Please check with your local community / centre so you’re familiar with guidelines and regulations before you plan your event.