I’ve made it an annual tradition to make my birthday not about myself each year, but about a particular cause to raise money for. In response to the crisis in Haiti, I decided I want to do something BIG this year. In order to do so, I’m going to need more help from my friends and blog readers (i.e. YOU) this time :). I’m not asking you for money right now, but for feedback and ideas to start with.
Last year I was able to raise over $2500 for Room To Read, and I thought this year I’d at least up it to $2600. Then a crazy idea popped into my head: What if I could raise $26,000? It sounds pretty radical to me still, but in response to the situation in Haiti, we’ve seen some amazing fundraiser ideas out there (like this 7 year-old), It won’t be easy, but I think it’s possible.
As far as the cause/non-profit to support, I’m choosing an organization that has a long history of working in Haiti, and provided a lot of help following the hurricane in 2008. It’s more focused on middle-term and long-term recovery and sustainability, which is a big reason why I’m choosing it. I’ve given to and will continue to support immediate needs and disaster recovery, but since the earthquakes effects will be felt for years, I want to support something with a longer term impact. I’ll share the name of the organization in the next few days. Sorry for the suspense, but I think a little mystery won’t hurt the campaign :).
Above is a photo from Haiti, courtesy of World Concern.
Anyway, in order to even raise $2600, much less $26,000, I’m going to need a plan. As I’ve done in years past, I’ll have a celebration on my actual birthday (Feb. 21) where I will sell framed photography of my own and from my friends. I’ll also have a campaign online raising money through Facebook, Twitter and other places.
In order to really hit this out of the park though, I think I’m going to have to have a series of events and even as friends to help with their own events potentially.
Some initial ideas, all with the common theme of the number 26:
- Run 26K the morning of my birthday, potentially with 26 other people, who all pledge to raise money
- Maybe add a 26K or 26 mile bike ride to that
- My worst fear: swimming - maybe swimming 2600 meters, or feet, or… inches…
- Writing a 26 line poem
- Hosting a fishes+loaves event with 26 people (basically a dinner fundraiser)
- Any kind of eating contest/food event with 26 people or 26 items. Can someone eat 26 goldfish/cheez-its and swallow in under 26 seconds? Record the hilarity and post it
- Some sort of dance competition/performance? 26 dance moves?
- Can we somehow mix karaoke into an event? 26 songs in a row
- Writing handwritten notes to 26 personal friends/relatives about the cause and why I care. Also asking my close friends to do the same.
These are just things to help get the juices flowing. No idea is a bad idea. In fact, I know I’m going to need so many ideas, that I’ll issue a challenge: If I can get at least 26 people to give me ideas in the comments of this post and following posts, I will commit to raising $26,000, but not until then :). I’ll be following up this post with more details/progress in the next few days.
Also if you’d like to be more involved, whether you’re in Seattle or not, definitely contact me and we can talk more!
I have 26 days left. Time’s a tickin’, so post your ideas now, or share this post with a friend!
cupcake photo courtesy of wishymom.