Fundraising Is Harder Than You'd Think

Last August, I established a memorial scholarship fund in my late best friend’s name. I had a goal of raising $2,000 and giving at least a $250 prize to the recipient, that way we could give the scholarship eight times, thus having eight people carry my friend’s name to college with them.

I started with a GoFundMe, because you always hear these super heartwarming stories about communities coming together to support great causes, and they somehow “always” meet their goal, plus make thousands of dollars extra somehow. For some reason, I thought that’s what would happen.

I was obviously wrong.

The GoFundMe was published on August 31st, 2019, has been shared 148 times, yet only 8 people have donated to it. Until two weeks ago, I hadn’t received a donated in 6 months. That’s literally how long it has been up for!!!!!! I was lost. I literally didn’t know what else to do as a fundraiser. But THEN my friend’s mom had an ingenious idea.

Since the friend the scholarship is named after passed away of cancer, she proposed that we sell ribbon keychains. You can basically buy them in any color, and they’re only $5 each, so people will buy a bunch and then we will make tons of money off of it. We have been selling these ribbons for a week and a half and we’ve already made more money than the GoFundMe has made in 6 months. Plus, I created a Facebook fundraiser that has brought in donations as well.

I don’t know what it is about people not liking donating to GoFundMe, but they just don’t. No matter how many times you share it and explain that literally every cent people donate will go directly to helping a student pay for college, they WILL NOT donate. That is, unless they are getting something out of it.

So, a big tip for anyone trying to fundraise for any kind of cause: skip the GoFundMe, and go straight to selling something that is super cheap and easy to make. Providing something for people who are donating makes it more pleasurable for them. But at the end of the day, all that's important is your cause, and in my case, how I can honor my friends name.

Here is the link to support the scholarship fund in my friends name. All donations are extremely appreciated!