Fundraising Your Mission Trip
Whether you’re heading to another state or overseas to do good work for an important cause, online fundraising is an essential part of preparing for your mission trip. Mightycause’s storytelling tools make it easy to craft the story of your mission. Plus, our sharing tools make it easy to share your story with friends, family, colleagues and community members.
Starting A Personal Fundraiser For Your Mission Trip
Most organizations require that an individual going on a trip with them raises their own funds for travel expenses, like flights or lodging. Mightycause makes it easy to raise funds for personal/non-tax deductible causes. To start a personal fundraiser on Mightycause, click here. Type your goal, and then after you click “Next” select “A Personal Cause” as your cause.
Be sure to explain in your Story why you need the funds — will they go towards trip expenses? Supplies for the people you plan to serve? A discretionary budget for living while on your trip? You can use the Expense Breakdown tool on your fundraiser to help visualize how the funds will be spent, too.
Make your page pop with strong visuals! Take a cue from Mary Kate and Mallory: the twins posted a video to their page to help explain their mission trip to Thailand. They spoke about why this mission was important to them, and what they hoped to achieve on their trip.
They also personalized their page by customizing their URL to make it more memorable. They broke up their text with photos placed directly into the Description. For those looking for an extra incentive to give, the twins also provided details about a t-shirt donors could buy to support their mission on their page.
Get the word out!
Most donations will come directly from friends and family — this group is the most familiar with your mission trip and how important this cause is to you, so they’ll be most likely to support! Reach them by sharing on Facebook and other social networks, and with personalized emails with a clear ask for their support.
Once you feel like you’ve sufficiently reached out to your network, consider expanding your pool of support. One way to expand your network is to team up with other volunteers — ask them to cross-promote your fundraiser on their social networks, and do the same for them! Be sure to “like” their page and comment on their fundraiser to help them keep up engagement, too. Mary Kate and Mallory kept up engagement on their own page by responding to all Comments on their page. This notifies the donor and may prompt them to share your fundraiser or donate again.
Most mission trips are organized through an organization, such as International Mission Board. Their website curates content from mission trip volunteers, so consider writing a blog post about your upcoming experience for them, and include the link to your fundraiser so readers can contribute, too! If you’re planning to document your trip on your own blog, this is also a great place to share your fundraiser.
Be persistent! Keep up momentum by sharing your fundraiser on social media and via email consistently (at least once a week), and remind your supporters of important deadlines (i.e., when is the deadline to raise the funds for your trip? When does your plane ticket need to be purchased by?).
Starting A Charitable Mission Trip Fundraiser
Some organizations prefer to manage the funds from the nonprofit level for a volunteer’s mission trip. This may make it easier to plan travel and meals if a large group is going on the trip. Individuals may also want to raise some money for the organization they are volunteering with to help raise awareness of their mission.
In this case, you would want to start a charitable fundraiser on Mightycause to ensure the funds are sent directly to the nonprofit and so your donors can receive a tax-deductible receipt. To start a charitable fundraiser on Mightycause, click here. Type your goal, and then after you click “Next” select “A Certified Charity” as your cause.
Leverage the organization’s network
It may seem like a no-brainer to let friends and family know about your trip, but have you considered asking the organization for help spreading the word? If you’re volunteering with a church, be sure to inquire about their church bulletin or newsletter. Ask if they’d be able to embed the donation widget for your fundraiser on their website.
One of the hallmarks of online fundraising is the ability to control messaging: Use key messages from the nonprofit (if it’s a hunger relief organization, you might say something like, “Help me raise $300, equivalent to xxxx summer meals!”) to ensure consistency and maximum impact. Remember that raising awareness can be as important as raising funds.
Lauren raised funds for Naomi’s Village in Kenya before her mission trip in early 2017. She used a strong image to help her friends and family connect the cause with her and her mission. She also used the Expense Breakdown tool to set up milestones for her fundraiser.
Lauren’s call to action was clearly written in her story: “Will you consider being a part of my mission & donate? I am extremely grateful for whatever amount God leads you towards!” she wrote.
Many donations came from family members, such as her aunt, uncle and grandmother. Lauren kept up engagement on her page by replying to Comments from donors. She used Facebook to share her page with friends and family, too. She linked to the social network in the “Organizer Info” section so donors could click through to her Facebook page. She shared her page on the social network, too. Overall, Lauren raised $1,450 for Naomi’s Village.
Taking It To The Next Level
Still stumped on how to spread the word on your fundraiser? Reach out to your local newspaper to let them know about your mission trip — the Community or Features section is likely looking for a story just like this one to share! It’s a great opportunity for the publication to spread good news about how their community is making an impact.
Consider making fliers and passing them out at school, on campus or at your church or synagogue. Keep it simple with a strong image and minimal text, and don’t forget to include the link to your fundraiser!
Finally, think of every network with which you’re associated. Are you in a recreational soccer league? Are you a member of a book club? Would your dad be willing to share your fundraiser with his colleagues? How about that other nonprofit you volunteer with once a month? Share your fundraiser with as many groups as you can — your network is often much bigger than you initially think!
For more help brainstorming your outreach, reach out to the support team at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re here to help!