Fundraising ideas and tips from fellow AngelRiders:

  • Raising the money was much easier that I expected. Just ask!
  • If you send a group of emails, send updates to your list or post progress on your Facebook page.
  • The week of the ride, send one last email “in case anyone forgot to donate.” Sometimes, people forget!
  • I’ve gotten many last minute donations just by writing again.
  • Remember, keep correspondence short, upbeat, and direct. Ask for the donation. You’re not selling anything, your are supporting kids with serious burn injuries. You are helping someone else “feel” the same purpose as you!
  • If you are meeting someone in person, rehearse your talk, do your “Superwoman or man” pose first, BE ENTHUSIASTIC!
  • I wear my “Ask me about AngelRide” pin all the time. When asked, I tell them about it, and then say “And I will be asking you for a donation later this Spring. Remember!”
  • No one likes asking for money. Focus on the good and THAT will be the message that gets across.

Here are some tried & true techniques…

  1. I talk to people all the time. If it’s someone new they inevitably ask what I “Do”! That is when I tell them about AngelRide…not in detail, but briefly highlighting that it is supporting kids with serious burn injuries.
  2. I give them a card with my name on it and the website address.
  3. Remind donors that their gift is tax deductable.
  4. I can ask for money because it’s not for me. I say, “I raise money to send kids with burn injuries to camp.” It’s a way to start the conversation.
  5. I send out emails. It takes 3 asks. Don’t be shy. People forget.
  6. I use the AngelRide business cards I received. I hand them out year round.
  7. I give them something…I made some pins out of clay during the year to give to people when I ask them for a donation.
  8. I ask donors to sign my jersey!
  9. I created a photo-card and wrote a little something inside to give to certain business owners I know who appreciate a more formal solicitation.
  10. I send a Thank You card to everyone who donates with photos of the ride after the weekend. A few of them have mentioned that the card is very much appreciated.

AngelRide is my “one” thing.
I go to people once a year, they know that I’m asking them to contribute to a cause that brings a smile to a child with life-altering burn injuries where at least for one week a year they are getting a chance to just be a kid and do what they want. You can’t be afraid to ask, to share with people how important this is to you and to the kids, no one will begrudge this of you. It’s not a “hard sell” it’s asking them to be a part of something – I always ask them to ride with me and if they can’t to consider volunteering or donating what they can. Make them a part of this event.

AngelRide isn’t just another request for money/donations.
Don’t talk yourself out of asking them to participate by saying “everyone gets asked to buy wrapping paper, cookies, pizzas, etc. to support someone’s son’s or daughter’s school activities.” While that might be true and there might be donation fatigue, this is different. Remember the hills that you thought you couldn’t get up after 50 miles on your bike? How did you get up that hill? For me, it was knowing that I was bringing a special day to a kid that might not otherwise get that day.

My emails are personal and frequent.
Tell people what AngelRide is. Tell people what Arthur C. Luf Children’s Burn Camp is. Explain that the money goes to support the Arthur C. Luf Children’s Burn Camp. Most importantly, tell them what impact this ride has had on you if you’ve ridden before and if you are a first time rider, explain why you are riding and what you hope to garner from this experience. As you train, write/talk about your successes, the difficulties, but also how excited you are to join like-minded cyclists of all skill levels to do this. If others in your family are riding or volunteering talk about that as well. Show that this really is a special weekend. People do care and will respond to your passion.

Seek a local bike store’s sponsorship.
A member of our team last year walked into a local bike store, asked if they’d be willing to donate a bike for an auction to support her and this event and, guess what – THEY DID! All they wanted in return was their logo on the team’s shirt. She raised all of her minimum through this one event.

Have a celebratory neighborhood kick-off event.
My youngest son will be a Young AngelRider this year – we plan to have a neighborhood BBQ to celebrate his participation and will ask those who attend to contribute to AngelRide in his name. It’s a great way to raise awareness, attract new riders and volunteers, and to make a young rider even more enthusiastic about his participation in this special weekend.