In recent years, sites like GoFundMe have helped raise individuals and organizations millions of dollars for charitable causes. In addition to starting an online fundraising site, here are a few ideas that can help you raise money for an accessible van:
Start a GoFundMe – This is by far the most important and first step. The process for setting up a page on a site like GoFundMe is very quick and easy, and they are by far the most visited fundraising website. When you go to write the description of the fundraiser, include at least a few paragraphs. Also, try to add fun facts or activities that your family would like to do after receiving the necessary funds. If you know someone who is a good writer, see if they wouldn’t mind proofreading or helping write your page.
Promote Fundraising on Social Media – Once you have a GoFundMe page completed, the next step is to promote it on social media. Creating a hashtag (#) is a great way for others to be able to share your story. It can be something like “#AccessibleVanforDan” or “#LetsHelpLucy”. Including the name of whoever the funds will be used to help is not necessary, but helps you get your story out. Use milestones as a reason to promote your fundraising, for example “We have already raised $100!” or “After 20 days we have 15% of our goal”. Always try to reword your posts and encourage others to share them.
Partner with a Local Business – If there is a locally owned coffee shop or ice cream stand you frequently visit that may be a great place to start. Ask them if they would consider having a fundraising night, where they donate a percentage of sales to your cause. This can help their business too by bringing in customers on a typically slower night of the week. Plan the event for at least a few weeks out so you have time to spread the word and share it on social media. If the business is not interested in a fundraiser night, see if they would allow you to setup a donation jar or put up a flyer with a link to your GoFundMe.
Reach Out to Local News and Radio Stations – Once you have completed everything above, it is the best time to reach out to the media. This gives them enough content to run a story about your fundraising efforts, and can really help boost the amount of money raised. It’s a good idea to have a family member or close friend call or email all of the contacts. Newspapers are another great forum to share your story and often they will publish the article online with a link to your GoFundMe.
Our “7 Ways to Fund Your Accessible Vehicle” guide has additional ideas and content including links to government funding, veteran resources and financing information. It can be found on our Getting Started page at www.mobilityworks.com/resources/getting-started/.
Always consult with a tax advisor or legal counsel before starting any fundraising activity. Be sure to check with your local Medicaid (or other applicable assistance program) office to verify the permissibility of fundraising activities. We recommend that you review the eligibility requirements and the terms and conditions of any fundraising campaign with a trusted advisor before beginning any fundraising campaign.