Fundraising with Roxanne Batezel
It started with a benefit concert ten years ago
Roxanne and her family have been holding IMDSA fundraisers in honor of World Down Syndrome Awareness Day (March 21st each year) for the last ten years. They began fundraising by selling tickets to a benefit concert performed by a local musician, followed by a silent auction. Roxanne asked personal friends who were musicians and a few professional musicians to volunteer their time to perform a concert at a local restaurant or pub where she charged a nominal fee and all of the profits went to IMDSA.
Today it's evolved to 'bowl-a-thon'
Today, Roxanne works with a local family owned bowling alley to get the best deal she can for the lanes on a Sunday evening from 5-7PM. For the past few years she's been able to fill the bowling ally's 32 lanes. She works with the local Down Syndrome Association, friends and family to recruit teams which includes many people of different abilities. The event is fully inclusive. Everyone can participate.
While she's had considerable success enlisting support from the local Down Syndrome Association over the past few years, many within her local mDS community now consider it the highlight of their year. Roxanne finds sponsors of $500, $300, $250, $100 to help defray costs. She uses Office Max to make cheap paper banners to hang over the bowling lanes for the sponsors who have donated over $150. Already planning ahead for 2023, one of her faithful sponsors has asked to be a "Premier Sponsor" and agreed to pay $1000 to have his logo on the PR materials. Team captains and each team member pays a flat fee for 2 hours of bowling which includes: shoes, the ball and access to the Silent Auction. She offers family rates as well so everyone can come. Sponsors help to defer costs.
Always followed by a silent auction
Roxanne's husband Tony prints all of the fundraising letters, sign-up sheets and other materials (see resources that can be repurposed for your events) while she reaches out to various businesses to ask for donations. She finds that a great source for donations are local crafters. The local Toys for Tots organizers have donated stuffed animals, books and games. She receives donations of free baskets from her local ARC store in exchange for sponsorship along with an invitation to participate as a team at the event. Her ultimate goal is to get everything donated for the silent auction and only pay for odds and ends like candy that would go into a 'movie' themed basket. A few days before the event she enlists the help from volunteers to package up the donated goods into baskets for the auction.
Roxanne's Fund Raising Tips and Tricks!