The success of your fundraiser is very often directly related to the prizes that you offer. While your organization may have set aside a certain amount for purchasing prizes, you might find that your budget is stretched too thin after covering other necessary expenses and won’t cover the costs of popular, high-end prizes that draw people’s attention like electronics. The good news is that you may find you don’t have to go it alone – you can call on members of your local business community to lend a hand.
Businesses grow and thrive by getting their name out and will themselves benefit from the positive publicity of contributing to a charitable organization’s fundraising event. Most companies small and large maintain a budget for advertising – for them, it’s simply the cost of being in business and a means of letting the public know about their services. But for you, it can mean a successful event!
While there are a number of ways to approach a business owner to ask for their help with a project such as a fundraiser or raffle, one of the best is to send him or her a brief letter explaining who you and your organization are, the type and purpose of event you’re planning and the kind of help you’d like to receive from him or her. Be clear, direct and to the point. And be sure to thank them for their support!
Before you sit down to write that letter, however, be sure to do some research on your targeted businesses and determine who is the appropriate person for your request. Many times, a quick visit to the company’s website or a simple phone call asking to whom such a request should be directed will yield the name you need in just a few minutes. Taking the time and making the effort to do this will go a long way toward receiving a timely – and generous – response.
Here’s an example letter to help you get started:
[Vice President, Marketing]
[Their Business Name, Inc.]
[60 E. Main Street]
[Sampletown, NY 55555]
Dear [Ms. Sample]:
I am writing to you on behalf of [Sample] Elementary School in [Yourtown], [Yourstate]. The school PTA is currently planning a midwinter fundraising raffle to be held [YourDate] in the Middle School cafeteria. This event will consist of an afternoon of fun for the children and their families. Previous raffles have always proved very popular.
Money raised at the event will be used to replace rubber mats and other gymnasium equipment at [Sample] Elementary. These items are worn and no longer suitable for the children’s use.
We are hoping that [Their Business Name, Inc.] is willing to supply us with a suitable prize for our raffle. [Their Business Name, Inc.] gift baskets are always popular, but any suitable product you could donate to us would be much appreciated.
If you are able to help, we would be very grateful. Please send a donation directly to the school at the address below. If you require any more information, please do not hesitate to contact me at the school address or email me at [your email address here]. I can be reached at [(Your) Phone-number] should you wish to speak with me directly.
Thank you in advance and best wishes from everyone at [Sample] Elementary School.
[Sample] Elementary School PTA
[Sample] Central Schools
[Yourtown], [Yourstate] [Yourzip]