march for babies blog
There may be less than a month to March for Babies but there is still time to have a successful March for Babies season. Here are some tips to keep you on track as we head into the final lap!
Reaching (and exceeding) Your Fundraising Goal:
Maximize your contacts and those of your team members — keep talking about your team, why the March of Dimes is important to you and let donors know how their help can bring you closer to your fundraising goal.
Encourage donations— Post how close you are to your goal on Facebook, Twitter and school message boards (with permission). If you are three $10 donations from the goal, let the world know — these types of benchmarks really work.
Follow up— Contact people who said they were interested in giving but haven’t committed.
Note bank days— Ask your March of Dimes chapter when bank days are held and schedule a time to come by. Ask your chapter how to handle last-minute donations.
Keeping Your Team on Track:
Stay motivated — Send updates every few weeks to celebrate the team’s progress and to encourage team members to do even more.
Celebrate individual and team success – Did a team member achieve a goal? Did your team reach (or exceed) their goal? Provide a certificate or public congratulions to celebrate the accomplishment and motivate all members to keep going!
Build team spirit— Set up a day to make t-shirts and/or signs and banners that you’ll wear or carry while your walking on March for Babies day.
For more tips and best practices, check out the March of Dimes Youth Captains Guide available at www.marchofdimes.com/youth.
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?
Looking for some great ways to make your fundraising efforts stand out? Here are some creative ideas and best practices to help you maximize your fundraising efforts and get your friends excited about donating to your March for Babies team.
Ask in a special way – Make your letters and emails to potential donors personal in order to get a larger response. 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 for donating. Go one step further and bring baked goods or candy to school or work (with permission) and sell them for donations.
Offer incentives - Offer to drive your friends to school or work, carry your friends’ books to class, or clean out your friends’ locker in exchange for a donation to your March for Babies team.
Create competition - Challenge your friends and family members to see who can get the most people to donate to your team’s page. Encourage them to ask teachers, coworkers and friends to make a contribution. Make the challenge public and you will see even greater success!
Say thank you –Thank everyone for supporting stronger, healthier babies through Facebook and Twitter, in person and/or through email. With administrative approval, publicly thank those who have donated by making an announcement at the beginning or end of a class or even make announcements to the entire school! The more public the thank-you, the better! You will show your appreciation and thanks to those who have contributed and may also encourage others to donate as well.
Be creative and think outside the box! Ask your friends and family members for input and ideas. And remember to let those who donated know that all donations are supporting stronger, healthier babies! For more fundraising ideas and best practices, check out our School & Youth Team Tips: Fundraising video.
Now let’s hear from you!
How do you make your fundraising stand out?
Today’s update comes to you from a recent Q&A with XinLei “Tony” Wang, the current Key Club International President and a March of Dimes volunteer. Key Club, a national service partner of the March of Dimes, is an international high school student-led organization and we are so excited to have their support! Tony, along with many other Key Club and Kiwanis International members, will be walking this spring for stronger, healthier babies!
Q: So, Tony, how is your role with Key Club International connected to the March of Dimes?
A: Key Club International encourages its’ clubs to support March of Dimes, one of our most outstanding service partners. Aside from participating in March for Babies events, I disseminate important updates on new resources and training webinars to be shared with our Board of Trustees and local leaders.
Q: What motivated you to volunteer & participate in March for Babies and for March of Dimes?
A: One of the defining moments in my involvement was when I toured a NICU during the March of Dimes Volunteer Leadership Conference in Atlanta, Georgia. This tour allowed me to understand the profound significance of my time dedicated to March of Dimes. When I walked in, I noticed – in the eye of a tired mother rocking a small baby – a sense of hope and appreciation. We toured the unit while listening to the nurse describing each piece of equipment made possible with the funding from March of Dimes.
March of Dimes makes a tremendous impact on our world. I strive to be involved in March of Dimes because I feel the possibility to make a significant impact in the lives of others.
Q: Why do you think it’s important for youth to be involved in March for Babies & March of Dimes?
A: Prematurity has a tremendous impact on the life of a baby. I think that youth should understand the importance of a healthy start for a baby. Our passion and enthusiasm can inspire others to believe in the March of Dime’s mission, raising awareness and adding new volunteers and leaders.
Q: What’s your favorite March of Dimes memory?
A: I really enjoyed a workshop [from the March of Dimes] called Hot Topics Related to Our Prematurity Campaign. The speakers were very knowledge and explained progress on the work to reduce prematurity rates across the United States. I appreciated the fact I was able to learn what projects our club fundraising efforts support. I was able to share the information with Key Club members and encourage them to continue their support of March of Dimes.
Q: And finally, tell us your #1 fundraising tip!
A: Know why you are fundraising for March of Dimes. Before explaining it to others, I think it is important that we have that sense of the purpose ourselves. Explain to potential donors why you believe in the cause. People want to know why they should support March of Dimes and what the fund will support. It’s possible that they just might take up fundraising themselves!
Thanks Tony for your insight, and all Key Club International members for supporting the March of Dimes and joining us in March for Babies! Where are you walking with your Key Club, or any other team, this spring?
Did you know that in 2010 school teams raised more than $3 million, the top school district raised more than $130,000, and the #1 Youth walker raised more than $70,000?
Are you a youth volunteer looking for fundraising ideas for March for Babies? Do you want your child to get even more involved with March for Babies and March of Dimes, in general?
The March for Babies Youth Toolkit is a great resource for all youth volunteers interested in participating in March for Babies. Find out how to start your March for Babies team, recruit walkers, host fundraisers and have fun while helping babies this spring!
Get your school and your friends involved. Learn how to host your very own “Club March of Dimes” at your local roller skating rink! Find out how to raise $300 in eight simple steps! Most importantly, discover how important your dedication and support is for all babies!
Like the March of Dimes Team Youth on Facebook to receive updates and tips from the March of Dimes. Connect with youth volunteers and March of Dimes supporters, like you. Receive feedback and advice on your March for Babies goals for 2011 from the March of Dimes and fellow volunteers.
For more information and additional support, contact March of Dimes Team Youth at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is your campus planning for March for Babies 2011?
Maryland FBLA State Officers shine in their volunteer support of the March of Dimes! This spring, FBLA Region 2 Vice President Chelsea Wagely from Dundak High School will be walking in Baltimore with others from her FBLA chapter as a March for Babies team. And Maryland FBLA recently helped their local March for Babies Kickoff.
Chelsea and her fellow Maryland FBLA State Officers also volunteered their time on November 15, 2010 to help the Maryland chapter of the March of Dimes with an annual fundraiser, the March of Dimes Signature Chef Auction. Event attendees are able to sample extravagant dishes from renowned local chefs, as well as participate in silent and live auctions of products donated from local businesses. Proceeds raised from the event support the March of Dimes’ research, education, community service, and advocacy programs.
Maryland FBLA National Officers played an important role in the success of the event; they were in charge of overseeing the silent auction. The silent auction consisted of over 100 items and required the FBLA members to monitor the items and bid sheets during the auction and distribute the items to the winners at check-out. The students were responsible for all aspects of the auction from start to finish.
The March of Dimes staff was very impressed and thankful for the officers’ help. The event raised more than $150,000 for the March of Dimes. Maryland FBLA was honored to volunteer and support the efforts of the March of Dimes and looks forward to continuing to strengthen their partnership with the March of Dimes. Thanks to this FBLA chapter & state for joining the March of Dimes year-round!
Maryland FBLA Officers pictured, from L to R: Megan Harsham, Karthik Krishnan, Shirley Zhu, Govin Vatsan, Chelsea Wageley, Corey Majerowicz, Jack Fitzpatrick, Tim Fisher
Today’s guest post comes from Amber, March of Dimes Team Youth intern.
As an intern at the March of Dimes as well as a college athlete, I have seen so many opportunities present themselves for ways to involve my fellow student athletes in March for Babies.
Many college athletic teams band together in a community service project and what better project to work on than the March for Babies! As the weather breaks for spring, getting campus athletic teams involved is a nice way to simultaneously complete your team bonding & community service project as well as fundraise for an incredible event that will without a doubt benefit some of them some day.
Make sure you let your teammates know about your team page, and encourage them to add the Facebook app too to grow their fundraising.
Amber and fellow soccer player & Team Youth intern Mariel dedicate countless hours to making sure youth volunteers have resources and ideas for their March for Babies campaigns across the country.
Youth, let us know what you are doing that is successfull! Not a student? Consider inviting your alma mater to join your March for Babies team – make it a fundraising-filled reunion!
The Washington Monument in the background, families and friends gathered and the sun shining – combined, these pieces make for a perfect March for Babies day! The DC event was a great success, with local residents showing up in full force to walk around our Nation’s Capitol so that one day every baby is born healthy.
As you avid readers know, Kerri Strug came out to the event and was able to spend some time with our top youth walker in the area, Maggie. Kerri got a few fundraising tips from superstar Maggie. And Maggie, who hadn’t reached her goal yet, sent another ask with photos from her day at March for Babies and hit her goal, raising $3015!
From family teams to high school volunteers to some of our favorite athletes including Kerri and Brian Mitchell, the day was all about people coming together to support the March of Dimes and healthy babies. I had a fabulous time at my 11th March for Babies, and I hope you did too! Tell us all about it.
And if you happen to be walking in San Antonio this weekend, keep your eyes out for American Idol former contestant and local Team Youth Ambassador Haley Scarnato. She’ll be making an appearance at the San Antonio March for Babies!
For Pi Delta Psi this year, the walk means even more – one of their brothers had a premature baby and they are walking in honor of baby Parker Edward Chen. Born two and a half months premature, he is still in the hospital today. All members are asked to give at least $10 or more, but I can see these brothers far exceeding that! Pi Delta Psi, thanks for being Champions for Babies. Have a Pi Delta Psi on your campus? Make sure you connect with them on fundraising events.
Olympic Gold Medalist Kerri Strug, friend of the March of Dimes, knows how important our mission to help babies and families is. So this year she has started Team Kerri Strug to get everyone involved in the March for Babies! You can check out her personal fundraising page and her team page.
I still remember when Kerri won the Gold in 1996, and I remember hearing her speak for the first time at a March of Dimes conference in 2000 – I have the photo of her and I on the wall in front of me right now!
Last summer Kerri returned to Atlanta, site of the 1996 Summer games, on a special mission to deliver new baby clothes donated for families at the Special Care Nursery at Atlanta Medical Center – a place where many of the tiniest, most fragile babies fight to survive. High school and college volunteers who were part of the 2008 March of Dimes National Youth Leadership Conference at Georgia Tech collected the baby clothes as part of a national community service project.
Kerri went on a tour of the local NICU with some of these students, and saw firsthand the March of Dimes NICU Family Support Program and the efforts made to help these families and tiny babies. Have you ever been on a NICU tour? Those families and babies are brave! And so are you, raising money and walking to get to the day when every baby is born healthy.