How to Fundraise in Lean Times

Scrape the Change group

With the economy the way it is lately, donations are down everywhere for most non-profits.  I serve on the board of Hands & Voices, a non-profit that serves families with deaf and hard of hearing children.  The challenge this year was to host a fundraiser for both the local chapter and headquarters.  Only one problem: many of our friends are out of a job and money is tight.

The solution? A "Scrape the Change" party.   Guests cleaned out their couches, dryers and jeans pockets and brought in their change, along with a dessert or appetizer to share.  We had a night of kicking back and catching up.  Those who couldn't make it still donated their change and in some cases, a couple of nice checks.

The biggest surprise of the night was two big buckets of change donated by my friend, Lenny Kepil.  Lenny has been looking long and hard for a job in the tech industry after being laid off from  Tellabs-- but he generously hauled in the change that he had been putting away for a couple of years.

So the next time you want to help a non-profit with a bit of money, just have your buddies bring in their change.  You may be surprised at what turns up!

Lenny Kepil with his donation

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