March for Babies Blog

Volunteers

Guest Post: Why I Walk

8 Apr Posted by Volunteers

Samantha pic for MFB blog

When we think about March for Babies and returning year after year, one of the big questions we are all asked is “Why I Walk” Today we have a guest post from Samantha, who shares her story and reasons for walking in March for Babies.

Why I walk

I walk because I was born premature in 1983 due to an ABO blood incompatibility. My Jaundice levels were 0.5 from being considered brain damaged.

I walk because my son, Jadon, arrived at 34 1/2 weeks, needing assistance to breathe, and still struggles with respiratory issues. He was on a cpap and received surfactant treatments to help improve his lungs. Nine year later the impact of missing those 5 1/2 weeks are seen through his asthma and breathing issues.

I walk because my daughter will never will. In 2006, I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl at 25 weeks. My sweet Trinity, born at 11.4 oz and 10 inch, was just too small and passed away shortly after birth.

I walk because, after Jadon arrived early and we said goodbye to our daughter, I needed answers. I searched for answers. I searched for place where I felt people got it. I found the March Of Dimes. I found answers to some of the many questions I had and through the March Of Dimes I found Share Your Story. WOW! Share Your Story became my saving grace. It put me in contact with those who were dealing with preemies with breathing issues, ER trips, specialists, and hospital stays similar to Jadon. It put me in contact with people who share the pain of saying goodbye way to soon, like I had with Trinity. It gave me faith in myself as a mom again. Helped me through the dark scary days and cheered me on on my good days.

I walk because in 2011 I got pregnant again and was terrified. We said goodbye to that pregnancy two days after Christmas at just 6 weeks.

I walk because in 2012 we got the news that we had one more chance. Again I turned to the March of Dimes for information on 17-p shots, progesterone, and many other things. Again I relied on Share Your Story for the emotional support that comes along with a pregnancy after so many bumps in the road! In Sept 2012 we welcomed our son, Jaxson, into the world 8 weeks premature due to being in distress. The NICU once again became our home. We were blessed to bring him home 16 days later thanks to the surfactant treatments he received.

I walk because my boys’ stories show how far the March of Dimes has come. But my daughters story shows how much work we still need to do. I walk for every mom that will have a baby that arrives early and turns to the internet searching for information and understanding. I couldn’t imagine where I would be If I hadn’t came across the March of Dimes and Share Your Story websites.

I walk so one day all babies are born full term and healthy… won’t you walk with me?

Samantha

Volunteers

How much fun does this look?

March of Dimes National Ambassador Aidan Lamothe got to spend some pre-race time with Jason Witten and Denny Hamlin yesterday. Make sure to follow Aidan Lamothe on Facebook to keep up to date on all his adventures!

NASCAR 2014:   Sprint Cup Series Duck Commander 500 Apr 06

NASCAR 2014:   Sprint Cup Series Duck Commander 500 Apr 06

Volunteers

Alpha Phi Alpha - VLC 2013

The March of Dimes and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. have been partners for more than twenty years. They were honored at the 2013 Volunteer Leadership Conference in Washington, DC (pictured above). In the last 5 years, along, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity brothers have raised over $1 million to support the March of Dimes. In addition, several members serve as local Chapter Ambassador Dads and in 2011, we were honored to name Alpha Phi Alpha Brother, Densel Fleming as our 2011 National Ambassador Dad.

Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. develop leaders, promotes brotherhood and academic excellence, while providing service and advocacy for their communities. Members across the country participate in March for Babies for a variety of reasons. Todd Hamilton, a member of Alpha Phi Alpha, shared his reasons with us.

Why I walk- I walk because my girlfriend was born premature. Before getting to know my girlfriend, I really did not know anyone else personally that was born premature. My girlfriend was born on December the 22nd, but her due date was supposed to be around mid-February. Because of this she had to be tenderly cared for and watched over in the hospital for about 8 months, then after that she was able to be bottle fed. What I have learned from my girlfriend is that as a premature baby they need care right away to make sure they are stable and able to live well out of the hospital setting. I do not know how my life would be if I did not meet my girlfriend, but I do know that without her my life would not be as bright as it is today, and that is why I, as a brother of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. support March of Dimes.

- Submitted by, Todd Hamilton, member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.

Thank you Todd Hamilton for sharing your reason for walking. And special thanks to Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. for your incredible dedication and support of our mission.

 

Online Fundraising

$200 Shirt Incentive!

1 Apr Posted by Online Fundraising

low res hil

Raise $200+ to get the official March for Babies “Go Baby Go” t-shirt seen here with our March for Babies Celebrity Ambassador and mom Hilary Duff! This t-shirt was designed by a military mom with a connection to the March of Dimes mission. It’s not for sale, so you’ve got to fundraise to get it! Need help? We’ve got lots of resources – check our blog often for tips!

Haven’t registered yet? It’s not too late to get started! Visit our homepage and type in your zip code to pull up walks near you – including dates, locations, and times!

Online Fundraising

Fundraising on Social Media!

28 Mar Posted by Online Fundraising

Looking for resources to help with your March for Babies fundraising on social media? Check out our tips below!

MFB-2014-Social-Media--Fundraising-Tip-Sheet

We also have these cute memes that you can use to boost your recruitment and fundraising! Tag family members and friends as they register & donate!

MFB14MemeTeamCaptainJoinMyTeam copyMFB14MemeTeamCaptainSpreadtheWord copyMFB14MemeTeamCaptainSupportMyTeam copyMFB14MemeTeamCaptainJoinMyTeam

For high resolution, click on the photo, and it will pull up in a new window or tab. Then right click to save! You can share on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Haven’t registered for March for Babies yet? It’s not too late to get started! Click here to register as an individual walker or start your own family team!

Volunteers

Making “the ask”

26 Mar Posted by Volunteers

A big question we receive during March for Babies is “Who should I ask for support (either to walk with me or to donate)?” The answer is – everyone and anyone! Here are a few tips to help you come up with a list of potential supporters.

Getting Started – Make a list of ten people you know that you could ask for support.
Then write down ten more.  Keep going until you can’t think of anyone else.  Start simple with your immediate family and close friends. Expand the list to include extended family, classmates, teachers (past and present), and coworkers. Think about everyone you talk to on a daily or weekly basis. Are you part of a community or school club/organization? Add their names to the list. Go even further by including neighbors and additional members of the community (like your family doctor or dentist). When you begin to make your list, don’t leave anybody you know out – sometimes you’ll be surprised at who gives you a donation.

Incorporate this activity at your next team meeting. Make it a competition to see who can come up with the most names!

Reaching Out – Be creative when reaching out. One technique may not work for all audiences.
Online fundraising is an easy way to fundraise. The easiest way to fundraise online is sending emails to potential donors with a link to your personal page.  You can do this directly from your Online Fundraising Page at marchforbabies.org. But don’t stop there.  Use social media to post a link to your fundraising page – you can reach people who might not have donated to you otherwise.  Dedicate your Facebook or Tweet about your progress. Use benchmark words to encourage more donations – “I’m just three $10 donations away from my goal!”

In some cases, adding the personal touch of a hand-written letter will be an incredible and thoughtful surprise to potential supporters. Mail letters to family and friends. Go the extra mile and ask classmates and teachers in person – it’s much harder for someone to say no to you in person. If you want to reach the most potential donors as possible, using a variety of fundraising methods will help you get there.

The Snowball Effect – After you’ve asked someone to donate, ask them to refer you to others they know who might be interested in donating.
Ask friends to share or post your fundraising efforts on Facebook and Twitter. This will help you not only reach people in your network but outside of it as well. Asking donors to refer you to others is an easy way to expand your network and will not only help you raise more money this year, but also when you participate in March for Babies in the future.

Ask Everyone – The important thing to remember when you decide who to ask to support you is that there is no such thing as asking too many people.  Besides, someone can only say yes if you ask them first!

Online Fundraising

Kmart Shop Your Way!

24 Mar Posted by Online Fundraising

kmart

Kmart has been March of Dimes’ top corporate partner for 31 years! This year when you donate to March of Dimes at a Kmart store, Shop Your Way members receive a coupon to earn 5% in points on your next qualifying purchase 3/23-6/21! Get started today!

*Offer valid 3/23/14 – 6/21/14 in-store and online. Coupon prints at register. Restrictions and exclusions apply to coupon redemption. See coupon for details. 100% of your donation benefits March of Dimes. Donate by 6/21/2014. Members earn Points on Qualifying Purchases, excluding sales taxes and other fees. See www.shopyourway.com for details.

Linda

Fundraising 101!

21 Mar Posted by Linda

We hope you’re excited about 2014 March for Babies! It’s Fundraising Friday, and we recommend you check out our Fundraising Companion video, which is full of helpful tips!


Every dollar you raise in March for Babies helps support research and programs that help moms, babies, and families.

If you haven’t yet, register and start your fundraising today!

Volunteers

Fotor031994532

Raising funds for the March of Dimes is a great way to support stronger, healthier babies AND it’s also a great opportunity to be creative! Here are some great ways to make your fundraising stand out and to get your friends and family excited about donating to your March for Babies efforts.

Ask in a special way – Make your letters and emails to potential donors personal in order to get a larger response. Do you send personal letters to your friends and family updating them on your life and career? Include your March for Babies efforts within your update.  If you are sending letters use colorful envelopes that are impossible to ignore.  Remember to share photos of your team and the reasons you are walking in your letters, emails and on your social networking sites (like Facebook and Twitter).

Share something sweet – Make cookies or other baked goods to thank your friends and family members. Go one step further and bring baked goods or candy to school or work (with permission) and sell them for donations.

Utilize special occasions – Is your birthday or another special occasion coming up? Ask your friends and family to donate as a gift this year. Having a celebration or a get-together? Provide an opportunity for attendees to donate to the March of Dimes right there as a thank you. Go the extra step and have a computer set up allowing people to make online donations right to your March for Babies individual or team page.

Offer rewards – Offer to drive your friends to school or work, carry your friend’s books to class, or clean out your friend’s locker in exchange for a donation to your March for Babies team.

Create competition – Challenge your friends and families to see who can get the most people to donate to your team’s page. Make the challenge public and you will see even greater success!

Say thank you – Thank those for donations in-person, by email/letter and/or through Facebook and Twitter. With administrative approval, publicly thank those who have donated at the beginning or end of a class or even make announcements to the entire school! The more public the thank-you, the better! Your donor can help you promote you walk!

Be creative and think outside the box! What works for some does not for others, and you and your friends and family may have a unique idea! Just be creative and have fun with it! Happy fundraising!

For more creative ways to raise funds, be sure to check out the 2014 March for Babies Youth Captains Guide!

Now let’s hear from you!
What is your best fundraising tip?
What creative ways do you raise funds for the March of Dimes?

 

Linda

Feeling lucky?

17 Mar Posted by Linda

2010d024_1141

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

It’s mid-March and it’s March for Babies season! Today is a great day to get registered and start asking your family and friends for donations! Need some help? We’ve got 5 easy ways to ask:

#1 Fundraise online

The winning way to fundraise. We know how busy you are. Online fundraising is faster and brings in 3 times more money. Share your personal fundraising link via email and post on social media like Facebook and Twitter!

#2 Make your own donation

There’s a lot of value in setting a great example and showing how much you care.

#3 SOCIAL-ize

Post your reason for walking, status updates, pictures, etc., to Facebook and Twitter to create a fabulous fundraising network. Don’t forget to include your personal fundraising link.

#4 One-stop fundraising

From the Dashboard on your personal fundraising page, you can upload photos to personalize badges for your emails, website or blog; or create funny, friendly eCards.

#5 Stay connected

Your Dashboard also lets you: download iPhone® and Android apps so you can conduct your campaign from the palm of your hand; download our Facebook app; or easily spread the word with the social media share buttons.

#6 Double your donations

Asking your donors if their company has a matching gift program is a terrific way to raise twice as much.

#7 Call on colleagues

Talk about the walk face-to-face, leave notes around the office or hang posters in your workspace and on bulletin boards.

#8 Outside the box

Beyond work, reach out to a ready and caring audience: your children’s school, an organization you belong to, a place of worship.

#9 Quick way to $250

Cann’t hurt to give this a try! Make a $25 donation. Ask three friends to match it; two family members for $20; four colleagues for $15; a neighbor for $10; your doctor for $25; and a local merchant for $15. You did it!

#10 Remind and thank

Don’t miss an opportunity to help babies. Send reminders to those who expressed interest but haven’t yet donated. Please thank everyone genuinely and enthusiastically for supporting you and remind them how special they are.

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How we help We help moms have full-term pregnancies and healthy babies. If something goes wrong, we offer information and comfort to families. We research the problems that threaten our babies and work on preventing them.

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