Author: Jen Franklin Kearns, ds-connex team member
The Reach for the Stars Buddy Walk® was held on Sunday, October 12th, at Daniel Boone High School. Event Coordinator Nicole Geloso has several terrific tips to share with other walk organizers.
1. Offer Food at Your Event
Nicole likens organizing their Buddy Walk® to hosting a party at her home; she would not invite guests to her home and not have anything to feed them. What a great analogy! This year, the Reach for the Stars event invited food trucks to sell food. This worked well for everyone because there were several options from which to choose, and the organization did not have to do any work in regards to food. As an added bonus, the food trucks donated part of their sales back to the organization.
2. Encourage Friendly Competition
This year, Nicole and her committee introduced a fundraising incentive to encourage their teams to raise more money for their organization. The top three teams which raised a minimum of $2,000 received an iPad mini. The friendly competition was fun, and surely helped raise a lot of money. Prizes do not need to be as extravagant as electronic devices; reserved tailgate spots, catered lunches, even special recognition on stage are fantastic ways to encourage friendly competition among the teams.
3. Share Plans for the Funds Received
Nicole finds that this is a key component to her event. “We have asked all of these people in attendance to support us, and they need to know where their money is going,” she explains. This is quite important, as people will be more likely to continue to support your organization if they know exactly how their contributions will be used. You also want to build excitement and show the organization’s gratitude for their support. This information can be shared the day of the event, as well as through your organization’s social media channels, newsletters, and website for the days and weeks following your walk.
Using each of these suggestions at her own event helped Nicole and her organization execute a very successful Reach for the Stars Buddy Walk®. With tips like these, we are excited to watch your event grow!
The Reach for the Stars Buddy Walk® fundraising site is still accepting online donations. To donate, please click here.
If you enjoyed this post, please check out the rest of our Event Coordinator Tip series. We feature event tips from around the country in an effort to share ideas and help build our Down syndrome community.