Even small projects can reap a windfall

Ravensdale Cemetery

Let’s say you’re not quite ready to plunge into the logistical challenges involved with putting on a James Bond gambling night or mini-marathon road race. Perhaps you just want to test the fundraising waters by just getting enough money to host a restoration workshop or to hire some goats for weed clearing.

But aside from putting out the coffee can at the local grocery store and diner, how else can you get the change rolling in?

Let’s face it. Most of us don’t carry a lot of cash around anymore but we do like giving for a good cause, especially when it’s for a community effort. So why not tap the local group of high school programming geeks to design a fundraising app? Check out the following sites—you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to set one up.

  1. Indiegogo
  2. GoFundMe
  3. Kickstarter

Using an app means smartphone owners (that would be a LOT of us) can make a quick $5, $10, or bigger donation by just a fast tap to the screen.  The donor gets immediate satisfaction of having done something good for a local cause and the cash flows safely through Paypal and gets directly deposited to the association’s 501(c)(3) bank account.

Once the app’s set up, you can link it to the society’s webpage, email it to friends and family, put it on flyers around town, hype it up at the local festivals (just think of all the people coming to the Memorial Day and 4th of July events you can reach out to with this!) and yes, don’t forget to contact the local papers to help you get the word out to an even bigger group.

Oh, and for the students who designed the app? They win too because they can spotlight this as a plus on their college application—especially if the app was successful in raising a good chunk of money for charity.

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