Fundraising is a daunting task for most people yet once you put your mind to it, it’s possible to fundraise for any of your identified costs or projects. Tasneem Docrat explains further.
I started an non-profit company (NPC), The Brave Bag Foundation (BBF), in August 2018, with the purpose of assisting newly diagnosed cancer patients starting the chemotherapy journey. We live in a society of very generous and giving souls which truly makes any initiative possible as long as the correct guidelines are followed and executed. BBF has been very successful with its projects within the public health cancer facility at Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital.
Practical steps when undertaking a fundraiser
- Clearly define the purpose of your fundraiser. This should include the target audience and scope of what the funds will be utilised for as well as what is needed in terms of items or resources.
- Use the power and influence of your existing networks. This will be your first adopters and supporters of your fundraising initiatives. Talk to anyone you know including family, friends, neighbours, hairdresser and doctors. Don’t underestimate the number of people you actually know. Your networks will tell their networks and the power of the multiplier effect is incredible. Use influences and social media as a means to get the message out there.
- To lend credibility to your fundraising efforts ensure proper accountability and transparency in your dealing with the collection and disbursement of all funds collected.
- Once you have established what you need, it’s not always money that will help you reach your goal. So, if you break down the items needed, often people will also be driven to donate items. In that way you will still reach your goal.
- Always keep your donors in the loop as you progress with your project or fundraiser as this will ensure that they support future initiatives.
- Remember to own your initiatives. So, you have to be operating at ground level to ensure success. Never lose sight of why you started the fundraiser and what inspired you. Your inspiration should be your driving force and that will give you the motivation needed to ensure success. The more personal the fundraiser, the better.
- Make it easy for people to donate. Open different avenues to ensure an easy way to donate. Open the online donation platform and an electronic payment method. People prefer to be sitting in the comfort of their houses and donate online.
- Always acknowledge your supporters and donors. They support the fundraiser because of you and you need to always express gratitude and appreciation so any future fundraiser will be supported.
- It’s important to gather the support of a team of friends who will assist you in the nitty-gritty of your fundraiser, like follow-up calls to family, friends, donors, emails, letter of acknowledgement and appreciation, general admin and running around tasks. Having this support will help you to ensure that your fundraiser is on track. It’s also important to keep a barometer of where you are in relation with your target and goal.
MEET THE EXPERT – Tasneem Docrat
Tasneem Docrat is a three-time breast cancer survivor, the founder of The Brave Bag Foundation, and a board member at Sanca Nishtara and Powerof1000, as well as the PRO at Saaberie Chishty Ambulance. She has over 30 years’ experience in the financial services sector.
Header image by Freepik