Wednesday, February 26, 2014

March Facebook Relay For Life Challenge!

After a lot of requests, here is a March Relay For Life Facebook challenge for you all!  Use #marchrelaychallenge with your posts so others can see them to!  You can see February's edition here:

Share your love and passion about Relay by participating in Cancer Man's March Facebook Relay For Life challenge!  A Facebook challenge is a great way to get your Relay participants actively posting about your event on a daily basis.  I wrote this challenge to feature the best parts of Relay- when the posters friends see it, they should feel like they are missing out if they don't sign up (and hey, let's be honest- they are!)

Need a copy of the challenge to share or post on your Facebook wall?  Just Right click and save the image below!  Good luck!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Relay For Life Passive Fundraising

I know, I know- I am the guru of posting out of the box and creative fundraising ideas, but did you know my 10K team doesn't get to our goal each year by only hosting BIG fundraisers?  That's right- I like to stagger BIG fundraisers with passive ones, so that my team doesn't get burned out, and we can spend more time concentrating on our big yearly events.  This really helps if you want to start fundraising all year, but you are not sure where to start!

So, what is a passive fundraiser?  Well, put simply, it is a fundraiser where you don't have to do a whole heck of a lot, but you still make money for Relay!  Who doesn't love the idea of that?  These ideas are all a great way to get your feet wet if you are a new team as well.

Here are a few of my favorites, but remember, use the connections that you have to make something happen!

Direct Sales Parties-
You know what I am talking about- that friend you have who is always giving you catalogs and asking you to have a party?  But you really don't want to, because that would mean cleaning the whole house, feeding people, and being a hostess?  Well, call the friend up- because having an ONLINE party is the perfect way to host a passive fundraiser!  With modern technology you can invite everyone, no one has to leave the house, and people can buy something they want!  Here's the catch- ask your friend if they would be willing to donate more to you than the normal hostess commission since you aren't doing this for profit (and of course, you will forgo the normal freebies you get from having a party so you can get more Relay funds!) Let them know that they can write the check directly to American Cancer Society, so they will get the tax write off that comes with the donation!  Distributors (or Consultants depending on the company) have always been really happy to help us out.  Think: Origami Owl, Scentsy, Avon, Mary Kay, Thirty-One, Tupperware, and Pampered Chef just to name a few.  Did a light bulb just go off?  I know you know someone who sells one of those things!

Before Christmas my team did one of these fundraisers with Origami Owl, partly because I was planning on buying some O2 for Christmas gifts anyway!  I figured, if I was going to buy some, other people were probably going to order to!  Jennifer (my friend who is the rep for them) took care of all of the hard work for us- she created a Facebook page, posted pictures, and answered everyone's questions.  I literally just shared what she posted with my Facebook friends!  When it was all said and done, I had Christmas done for hard to shop for people on my list, and we raised $237.05 for Relay.  Seriously- do you know how many cookies you have to bake to make that much at a bake sale?  Too many!  The furthest I had to go for this fundraiser was my mailbox when my order came in!  If you need an Origami Owl Rep, leave me a note below and I will send you Jenn's email address- she will take good care of you!

Party Of Gold
So speaking of "parties" have you ever been to one where you got PAID instead of spending money?  Yeah.  You and your guests will walk away with a check in your hands, and not just a check for Relay.  How?  Party Of Gold.  You have a rep come to you, and you bring your old, broken, x boyfriend, and out of style gold.  They weigh it, and make you an offer on the spot.  If you accept (which you will, because they have the most competitive rates) the rep writes you a check ON THE SPOT!  How is this a fundraiser?  The rep will write your event a check for 15% of their total profit from the event.  No, 15% doesn't sound like much, but when everyone you know comes to the party to make money, it adds up extremely fast.  Even better?  if someone can't make it the day of, they can fill out a form to leave with you, and they will get a call the day of the party with an offer.  Bonus points if you can find a local business to let you have it at their location- then you can invite your entire Relay and community out!  Here's another neat little bonus, for every party booked through you that does $500 in sales or more, the rep will give you an additional $50 donation.  So, uh, shameless promotion, if you live in Oklahoma, talk to my rep, Shelley, at (405) 371-8784 and tell her Cheryl Smith and Cassi Selby sent ya!  Our next gold party is Saturday, I will let you know how much we raise!

Work with a company or business to earn a percentage

One of my team mates, Jacy, made this sweet little deal happen.  She found a local distributor who was selling breast cancer awareness sports socks.  She originally contacted him to see if we could get some at wholesale to resell for profit, but the owner had an even better idea.  For every pair of socks sold in our town, he is donating $2 of his profit to us!  The socks were already all set up to sell at a really popular local boutique called It's All About Moi!, so all we had to do was tell people they were there!

The event chair for Relay For Life of Washita County told me about something they do that is similar to this when we had lunch today.  They have a local gas station that gives them a percentage of every fountain drink they sell!  Sarah has a nifty little Relay blog to, if you want to check it out, you can find it here. 

But don't think this concept stops at products! Small business owners are your BFF when it comes to passive fundraising.

Cancer Man has a partnership with Jessica Ma'ilo who is a travel agent that specializes in Disney trips and cruises.  If someone mentions Cancer Man when booking, she gives a percentage of her commission to him!  How easy is that? 

If you are a Disney freak like me (guilty as charged!), you might also enjoy her blog- Magic, Memories, Mayhem

He also has a partnership with Crystal Klear Images.  Crystal is an amazing photographer (she shot our wedding!), and she generously offered to come to our town for a day of mini sessions, and is donating 50% to Wesley's fundraising! 

Have a printer?  Know someone who does?  Of course you do!  Did you know you can recycle your empty printer cartridges for cash?  My team uses Empties 4 Cash for this service, and it couldn't be easier.  They will send you a pre paid shipping label, you fill up a box with empties, and send it in.  In a few weeks, you get a check!  You can ask local businesses to donate their old cartridges to you to- it is a super easy way for them to help you out without spending any money!

There you have it!  The easiest fundraisers out there!  Try one out today, and see how easy passive fundraising can be!

As always, thank you for joining the mission to finish the fight against cancer!


Saturday, February 8, 2014

Relay For Life Wish Bracelets an easy DIY fundraiser!

So I have a gem of an idea for you guys today!  If you have ever spent time over in the orient, you know about wish bracelets.  The legend says that you tie one on (over in Thailand they are actually red string) and make a wish- when it wears off, your wish comes true!  Now, over the years I had completely forgotten about those cute little bracelets, until I went through some old boxes while organizing and found one!  And, as usual I said...

Oh!  There's a fundraiser in that!

I really do say that out loud in case you are wondering.  True story.

So anyway, I went to work figuring out how to make these little do dads, and it turns out- SUPER easy, and SUPER cheap!  So hey- what kind of Relay friend would I be if I didn't tell you how you can do it to?

Here's what you need (but remember- be creative- if you have something similar in your craft pile or can get it donated- even better!)

- 4 by 6 Cardstock (I chose to order postcards from Overnight Prints - it ended up being cheaper and better quality than printing them at home)
-A hole punch
- 8mm round beads (I ordered purple cat's eye- fit the "Cancer Man" theme I was going for)
- 1mm cotton cord (the purple stuff above)
- .7 mm silver nylon beading cord
**note** if you are buying your stuff at a local craft store, hemp works well to,  You don't HAVE to have two cord colors, that is just what I went with!

Here is the usual disclaimer about my fingers.  I make tie dye for a living- seriously.  It's my full time job!  So, yes, my fingers look yuck.  Today I made Girl Scout shirts, so they look green.  If you want to see pretty manicured blogger fingers- you'll have to go somewhere else! HA!

OK, here we go.

This is so easy you are going to want to kiss me.

  Thread both strings through your bead. 
Tie a simple knot on the right side of the bead (make sure it is centered)
 It will look like this when you pull it tight.
 Then tie another simple knot on the left side of the bead.
 Punch holes to string the bracelet through on your card.
String the bracelet through the holes you just punched.
Tie left over string in a bow in the back.
Now flip it back over and admire your handy work.  Isn't that the easiest thing ever!?!?

Not only are these awesome to sell as an easy fundraiser, but they would make great survivor gifts for your events (I have seen a few titled "A Survivors Wish").  And, if you don't have the time to make them yourself, I have a bulk pack listed on Etsy that you can buy for super cheap!  Happy crafting loves!
UPDATE 6/09/14
Due to popular demand I have added DIY kits that include everything you need to make 50 bracelets!
Find the purple kit here!

                      Find ready made purple bracelets here!