Saturday, January 5, 2013

Fundraising Frenzy

After being granted the charity ballot to run the London marathon for Guide Dogs, the deadline for fundraising really started setting in. I knew the training and the running of the race would be a challenge in and of itself and I knew the fundraising would be an added pressure, but I didn't think I'd be more worried about raising the money than running the marathon. Maybe when we get closer to the marathon I'll be more concerned with that, but as of right now I am more concerned with raising 400 pounds by March 31st.
According to the London marathon Guide Dogs events team, and the contract I signed with them, I have to have the first 400 pounds of the 2,000 pounds in to them by March 31st. I currently have 80 pounds raised. So, that means a lot of fundraising for me in the next few months; along with training, hydrating right, sleeping correctly and hopefully completing my MSc with high grades.
I never have picked the path of least resistance. ;)
I have a few ideas for fundraising, but the logistics of such things need to be worked out.
First of all, my Virgin Money Giving page is still up and that is where I've collected my donations for now. I'm incredibly grateful for the individuals who have donated thus far.
My next endeavor is to plan a Companion Dog Show. These shows are licensed by the Kennel Club and sound like a lot of fun. Not to mention, it's an inexpensive way to raise money. It definitely will take some work, but I'm actually really looking forward to planning the show. The organiser gets to select novelty classes, along with confirmation classes, for the dogs to compete in. I figure that since it's an event to raise funds for Guide Dogs it would only be fitting to have a class for "best guide dog" or something like that. Hopefully I'll be able to get some guide dog handlers and maybe some puppy walkers (AKA puppy raisers) out as well.
Of course there's always the good old fashion method of carrying around pledge forms and asking people to donate. I've never been very good at that, but it may become a necessary evil.
Since I'll be doing most of my training in my gym, I thought about asking if I could run some sort of event within the facility or put up a pledge sheet. I haven't quite figured that one out yet, but I think it'll be a good place to find sponsorship; I hope.
University starts up again on the 14th after about a month's break and I've also thought to ask the head of the department if I could have a bake sale or at least pass around the pledge form in class. There's got to be a way to tap into that population. I'm of the mindset that every little bit helps.
Other than that, I'm sort of stuck for ideas. One of my guide runners suggested bagging groceries as that is a popular way to raise funds in the UK, but I'm not sure I have enough man power to pull something like that off. I really can't help bag someone's groceries-okay, if it came down to it I could, but I'm not sure how well that would go-and I really don't know a whole lot of people here to ask to bag groceries with/for me. Again, another idea to look into.
There's a cafe we go to a lot and have become friends with the owner. Valentine's Day will becoming up soon and I thought about making a basket with a hand made blanket, some wine and chocolates-or something like that-for her to raffle off, or maybe some of the jewelry I make. Either way, I'd have to obviously ask her first and then make the stuff.
So even though it's only the 5th of January, I really need to  start fundraising. The 31st of March will come up really fast and the 23rd of April-race day and due date for 1,6000 pounds-will come even faster.

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