Here is your 2018 Running with the Bears Charity Runner Fundraising Guide!
The August 18th 2018 Running with the Bears Marathon, Half Marathon, and 10K is a fundraiser BY and FOR Mountain Circle Family Services and the foster care children and families we serve. We need your help!! Every registered runner has been emailed a link to their unique fundraising page (missing it? Just let us know!). Every participant who fundraises over $700 will receive a lightweight Charity Runner jacket (new style this year!), a specialty goody bag, and all sorts of other swag. The top fundraising individual and team will each walk away with a special surprise! Below you will find more information about our work at Mountain Circle, as well as a guide to fundraising, and templates you can copy and paste. Feel free to download this guide as a PDF here.
What is Mountain Circle? We are a non-profit foster care and adoption agency in Northern California and Nevada. Every day, we ensure that children in ‘the system’ are placed in the most stable, loving, and safe temporary homes as possible. Sometimes, we are even able to help these families adopt. Watch a short video here to meet our foster families! Mountain Circle’s goal is to provide the very best training and support to foster parents, and the resources and opportunities that foster children need in order to become happy and independent adults. Although we receive government support to meet the basic need of foster families, we know these children need more. RWTB helps us to provide the activities which help foster children to feel normal; camp tuition, Holiday gifts, back-to-school bags, after-school sports, and outdoor leadership adventures for youth in our PowderQuest Program.
YOUR fundraising makes these activities possible.
You don’t need a connection to foster care or adoption to make a difference to these special kids, simply join our team of incredible Bears Charity Runners! Our goal is to raise $60,000 by August 1st! Here are some FACTS:
- The average age of a foster child is 10 years old.
- Mountain Circle serves an average of 75 children and youth each day.
- In California, there are 55,000 children who cannot live with the biological parents due to no fault of their own. Many have been abused or neglected.
- In 2014, 22,392 youth emancipated* — or “aged-out”— from the foster care system when they reached age, or finished high school. Mountain Circle has a program to specifically support these older youth with life skills and vocational training.
- On average, children remain in state care for nearly two years and six percent of children in foster care have languished there for five or more years.
Mountain Circle is committed to changing these statistics, one kid at a time. This is how you can join us by sharing your RWTB Charity Runner fundraising page:
1.) Get the ball rolling by emailing your closest contacts. Use one of our templates below- simply copy and paste with your name and fundraising goals. What is the very best way to get your donations fast? Ask your boss or company to sponsor you! Watch a video about how other Charity Runners met their fundraising goals. Let your supporters know that this cause is important to you, and that Running with the Bears will acknowledge their donation everywhere.
2.) Social media blasts. Check out how our friend Rodney did it! Sometimes all you have to do is ask (he raised $200 from this post…)
.Th The Post:
Tips for fundraising on Facebook:
- Every update should include a link to your personal fundraising webpage
- Highlight fundraising milestones as you reach them
- Include stories about why you are fundraising, or why this cause matters to you
- Tag your donors in your posts that thank them for their donation
- When you get close to your goal encourage your friends to help you reach and exceed it
- Ask your friends to share your fundraising webpage with their friends
- Last but not least, don’t just post about your fundraising activities, it should supplement your social media activity not replace it.
3.) Thank you’s! We send every single one of your donors a thank you note- but let’s double the effort! Thank them online, by email, or in person. Everyone wants to know that their gift matters.
Here is how your supporter’s gifts make a difference to our foster kids:
- $50 means that a foster child can attend after-school sports or dance lessons.
- $100 is a new car seat for baby’s safe trip from the hospital to their new foster home.
- $150 buys emergency clothing for a child who comes in with nothing
- $200 is 200 hours of paid vocational training to an emancipating foster youth at our Nu-2-U Thrift Store.
- $600 provides an older youth with an outdoor leadership adventure weekend- check out the short video!
More Tips For Fundraisers:
Be direct and honest: Don’t disguise your ask or use vague language. Ask for what you need, as simply as possible. Be personal. Think of how you would ask for help from a friend or family member. Use this language and tone with your audience, and they will use it with their networks.
Educate. Don’t assume that everyone knows about your cause or your needs. But don’t talk down to people either. Strike a balance of sharing knowledge without being a know-it-all or boring. Specify impact. When possible, tie a fundraising ask to a measure of outcome. It must seem achievable and relatable.
Don’t force it. Avoid creating fake matching campaigns or a false sense of urgency. If you need more substance, use your storytelling skills.
Need ideas on who to ask? Check out our recent blog by one of our most successful Running with the Bears Charity Runners: https://www.runningwiththebears.org/uncategorized/how-to-raise-500-in-five-weeks-for-charity.
Here are templates you may use for your requests:
Email Template: SUBJECT LINE: Help me reach my Running with the Bears fundraising target.
Dear [First Name],
As you may already know, I’m participating in the Running with the Bears race this year. I’m really excited about competing—so wish me luck! I’m running to support Mountain Circle Family Services—a wonderful non-profit organization that serves nearly 100 foster care children and youth each day. I would really appreciate it if you would sponsor me through my online fundraising page (or even the old fashioned way, a check in the mail…) My goal is to raise [dollar amount], which will allow Mountain Circle to provide exceptional experiences like summer camp, vocational training, and leadership adventures, to the foster children and teens they work with each day. Every dollar counts and even a donation of as little as $20 will help provide the resources that help foster kids feel more normal– like school clothes, and Holiday gifts. It’s really easy to give online, and you get a receipt for your donation emailed directly to you.
Just click on the link below to visit my fundraising page. [Fundraising Page URL] Thanks so much for your help, [Fundraiser Name]!
Facebook Template: “Hey friends, I need your support!! I am running with the bears in August (yikes!), but it’s for a great cause- children and youth in foster care. My goal is to raise $700, and I only have a few more months to do it. Can you help with just $10 or $20? Every single dollar makes a difference to these kids. Thank you!”
FAQ’s for Fundraisers:
Q.) What is the deadline for accepting donations? We can accept donations until race day, but in order to be considered an official Charity Runner (and get the goodies…) you must raise $700 by July 20th.
Q.) What do I do if I’m having a problem with my personal fundraising page? Just contact Josie at 530 284 7007, or [email protected]
Q.) Can my donors make a gift offline? Yes, we can accept donations by check or cash too! Checks may be mailed to PO Box 554 Greenville, CA 95947. Make sure they make a note of your name so that your fundraising page gets credit.
Q.) What happens when I raise $700 or more? You will receive a bunch of fab swag (say that 10 times!)- including a special goody bag, a ticket to the after-party, and a lightweight Running with the Bears finisher jacket in your size.
More information can be found here: https://www.runningwiththebears.org/charity-runners
From all the volunteers, staff, and foster families of Mountain Circle Family Services, THANK YOU!!
Read stories from the front lines of our work in foster care: http://www.mountaincircle.org/blog