How I Turned our School Fundraiser into a Community 5k in 9 Weeks.
I love running so much I decided to take what I love and turn it into a fundraiser for our local Homeschool Partnership Program through our local School District. I have been the events coordinator for the last 2-3 years and love fundraising and just putting large events together where people have fun. Then I thought of the perfect opportunity to raise money for a cause dear to my heart, and include our school, and my son’s learning disability, dyslexia. I did what any smart person would do. I got on the internet and started googling websites that could help me organize the event I envisioned. I grabbed a notebook scribbled down an unorganized note taking mess, and off to the PTO meeting I went, to present this no-brainer fundraiser to the PTO Board and school Principal. The PTO President looked at me, listened and said along these lines I am paraphrasing…Great! YOU can take that and run with it… notice the word YOU. Then I heard a voice speak up and I thought ok, someone else sees what I am seeing my partner Sheri. So the 2 of us decided to take on this fundraiser all by ourselves. Sheri looked at me and said,” ok what do we do to get started.” I looked at my scribbling and said, ” Let’s get together and go over my notes at a later date.” And that is when my dream of my own 5k started coming alive! I divided up our 9-week schedule into two categories. Sheri took the paperwork: Sponsorships, written agreements, Community letter, I took charge of the Admin and promotion side of the race. I HATE paperwork. I am a get it done personality. I split my list up between 2 people.
Week:2 Written agreements, Community letter
Week: 3 Vendors, water Donations
Week: 4 Sign Sponsorship Agreements
Week 5-9 help another person with the list.
The first part of this is going on while I was working on my list as well.
These are the steps it took me to get from the start to a successful 5k fundraiser:
Week 1: The first thing I had to get was a venue. And figure out our Goal
I am really lucky where I live. I am in a city that runs along the Columbia River. Running paths everywhere with Parks, lots of parks.
I had to find a place that had bathrooms, Parking, and space to put up tents, and a good course…no problem! Phone call time.
Goal– to make money for our skills builder program and give a percentage of proceeds to a local charity to include the community support.
Week 2: Create an event page on social media, and create an Online Registration. I used Eventbrite. Eventbrite is so easy and keeps track of everything for you. They mail or deposit the funds within 24 hours after the race. Easy peasy. Call the parks Department. Find our Park and fill out proper forms and pay fees.
Week 3: Map the course, look to see if you need traffic control or ambulance or any other ordinance your city may require.
Week 4: Reserve sound system and or Timing clock ( my run was a family fun run we did not time it) this is where you would register your race if you want it to be a registered timed race.run sign up
again I did not use this because we were a fundraiser and not timed event.
Week 5: Porta Potties. I found a park that had bathrooms at our start and finish line, therefore I did not need porta potties but runners need to pee….Order t-shirts!
Week 6: Organize activities, awards, drawings etc… start getting donations from local businesses. Order Banners and signs.
Week 7: pre- registration, email news stations, radio stations, schools, etc….flyers to all gyms and facebook event page sharing around.
Week 8: Print out race day forms, First Aid Supplies
Week 9: YOU are ready to RACE!!!! take a deep breath and knock their socks off!
Now, remember when I said this was a fundraiser I had no funds to start this project until we found our Sponsorships. PTO had no money for me to borrow. I had no idea how much it was going to cost. I am proud to say I pulled off this community event fundraiser under $300.00 my biggest expense was the t-shirts, that I got a really good deal on and sold them at a great markup to pay for them quickly. I got my shirts at cost with the paint and labor donated by our local print shop in trade for their sponsorship. Yes, I bartered sponsorships for great deals. Every day I went somewhere I dropped a flyer or asked for donations. I got great donations from Runners Soul shoe Store, local Deli Stone Soup, mini golf passes, teachers world, and our local Paddleboard rental place. I had great prizes and lots of them. I had the best costume, as our largest prize. We had Oranges donated along with water donations from Yoke’s.
Here are my pics of the best day ever!!!!!! Yes I am proud of myself!DYSLEXIA AWARENESS