What would you do if you had unlimited funds? I would travel the world and live the life I often envisioned for myself, among other things. What if you did not have unlimited funds? Does that mean that you cannot do the things that you want to do? Absolutely not! It is my personal belief that if one has a passion for something, then one can do anything that one sets their mind to.
I had considered this trip for a while (you can ask Taylor). I knew I had the vacation time accrued, but the fundraising was the most daunting part for me.
I brought it up to my boss and she committed $300 there and then and blocked off the vacation time. With that catalyst and start in the fundraising, I felt encouraged and realized that it was doable so I emailed everyone I knew.
You're an international volunteer with the desire to make an impact, and have a little fun along the way. You've done your research and have concluded that Cross-Cultural Solutions is the safest, most reputable organization around. So what's next? It's time to start raising funds for your big adventure. Here are a few creative ways to get started.
My most successful fundraiser was a girl’s only event held at a local hunt club. I sent out flyers to my parent’s friends, all my girlfriends, and every woman I ran into including the mail delivery person. I also created a Facebook event and invited every female on my Friends list. Social media really helped to spread the word about the fundraiser. I included a link to MyCCS page, in case friends could not make the event but wanted to help.
It doesn't take a certain kind of person to be able to ask for donations. Asking friends, family and acquaintances for donations can be a humbling experience. And by offering a contribution to your program fee, they become a part of the effort. It’s about more than simply making a donation but rather working towards a larger cause. Don't be nervous to ask - all they have to say is "no" if they'd rather not donate. Yet, you'll find that people really care.
When I was a junior in college, I decided I wanted to use my winter break of college to volunteer in East Africa. I had been studying Swahili for almost three years and I wanted the opportunity to really immerse myself in the culture and language of Tanzania, while being able to volunteer my time in the community. Here's how I raised the funds to support my journey of volunteering abroad.
And now for the much anticipated conclusion of my adventures in fundraising.
Just a week after my letters went out, I got three checks in the mail for $10, $25, and $50. At that point, I was just relieved to have received a response. And not just one response; three! Over the next several days, more letters arrived and each one contained a check and a quick note of encouragement from the donor.
Let me paint you a picture:
I’m a college student. I just spent $400 on books. I buy chicken flavored ramen in bulk when it’s on sale. I work part-time at a pizza place and have an unpaid internship. I’ve also got a pretty rockin’ social life. I’m a busy lady living on a modest budget. All this, and I’ve just decided to enroll with CCS for a four-week volunteer adventure of a lifetime in Tanzania.
If you’re considering embarking on a volunteer adventure of a lifetime with CCS, but need a little help raising your program contribution, I’ve got some tips to help you get there. I know they work. Because they worked for me.