We know that starting a fundraising campaign can feel overwhelming – particularly when you’re already busy trying to balance work or school, training and a social life.
That’s why we’ve put together these dedicated tips, specifically designed for an athlete fundraising campaign. We promise that if you take a moment to read them and look at the advice in our fundraising toolkit, your fundraising campaign will get off to a flying start!
Module 1 of our toolkit has an in-depth section on how to select and define your target audience (it’s well worth a read for further inspiration) but here are a few key examples to get you thinking:
It’s natural for players, coaches and other members of your club to take pride in the elite achievements of current or past members and they are often willing to help you succeed.
Ask your club to:
Schools love being supportive of students who are achieving their best, and are proud to highlight alumnus’ achievements.
Work with your school to:
Employers and colleagues are usually happy to help fundraising efforts
Many businesses in Australia love to support their local community; especially sporting initiatives. Plus, your fundraising campaign has one key advantage – it’s tax-deductible (which businesses love)!
For smaller businesses, it’s a great idea to call in and chat to them about your fundraising project. For larger businesses, dropping off a flyer or sending through an email tends to be a good conversation starter. Either way, have a specific ask in mind (for example, $500 or $1,000 etc.) to make it a quick and easy choice for them.
The really big corporates in Australia will also have a CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) budget which is used to donate funds to worthy causes every year. The good news is that all Sports Foundation fundraising projects are eligible to receive funds from CSR budgets, so don’t be shy about approaching the big end of town.
Before you meet with your local businesses, speak to your Sports Partnership Manager, about the sort of recognition you can offer businesses after they have donated. It can be a great incentive for them to donate!
We know that as an athlete you need to prioritise training and preparation – so we get that your time is already pretty stretched!
Our toolkits and ideas are designed to help make things as easy as possible for you, but the reality is that it will take a degree of time and commitment to reach your fundraising goals.
That’s why it is really important to ask for help from friends and families. Some of our most successful fundraising athletes rely on help to achieve their goals – and in our experience, friends and families really enjoy being useful and involved.
One of the easiest ways to promote your fundraising page is via social media channels.
Sharing your fundraising story multiple times helps potential donors to:
Potential social media posts could include:
“Today I got a new PB! That extra training session a week is starting to pay off! Help me get a better PB by supporting me on my way to nationals by making a tax-deductible donation to my fundraising page <link>”
“Only three days to go until the championship, I’d love your help to make sure <insert aim of fundraising> etc.”
“If I reach my $1,000 you’ll see me wear rainbow coloured tights next time I compete. Donate today if you’d like to see a photo of that!”
Thanking your donors is extremely important – but fortunately also very easy. All of your donors’ details are stored in our online portal which means you can access and contact them anytime you like! For more inspiration on writing a great thank you note, check out module 4 of our toolkit.
Thanking your donors is the first step to establishing a long-lasting relationship and it’s key to securing future donations. You should be keeping your donors in the loop throughout your athletic journey, no matter how big or small the donation was. This lets donors know that their donation has been valuable and has made a real difference to you – if they feel part of your journey then they will be more inclined to donate again and again.
Here are a few ideas to help make your donors feel involved and appreciated:
This is a quick and easy way to make sure all your donors are kept up to up to date with your training, activities and how you performed in your recent competition. Always include images or a short video when possible.
Invite donors to join a closed Facebook group where you share your photos and updates of your journey. If you’re fundraising for an event, go live on Facebook from the event to give your donors a real insight into where their support has taken you.
Send your donors a handwritten card wishing them happy holidays and thank them again for the support they gave you during your competition earlier in the year.
If you received a particularly generous donation, consider catching up with that donor face to face to thank them, have a chat about your journey and find out common interests you both share. If it was a corporate donation, offer to visit during work hours in your sport uniform to chat with employees and customers about how their company has helped you to reach your sporting dreams.
Donors love experiencing sport “behind the scenes” and getting a unique or VIP view of the action
As we noted above, module 4 of our toolkit has some great ideas about how to thank donors, but we’ve set out some athlete specific ideas for major donors below:
Donors can also be recognised through a level recognition system, for example: