Alzheimer Society of Nova Scotia

Brainstorming activity for YOU, the new fundraiser

In Uncategorized on August 28, 2012 at 4:30 pm

How often are you told “You have to walk before you can run”? Personally, I can’t stand the saying, but as an event planner, I appreciate the meaning. Last year at a conference, I heard Simon Sinek speak about innovation and inspiration, all leading to actions. He proposes that when we are planning, we “Start with Why.” A saying which I appreciate and can tolerate. (Even though Sinek uses this thought model more in a corporate/organizational environment, I like to use it when I plan events and campaigns).

This popped into my head early on Monday morning when I received an email from someone who wanted to hold an event and had heard about an event I had held. Her email referenced the idea (awareness walk) and asked me general logistic questions. I immediately picked up the phone to call her, because:
1. I respected the fact that she did her research and approached someone with questions.
2. We’ve all been there; we have an idea we think will work, but where to begin?  I’ve made calls and continue to make calls, to colleagues bouncing ideas off them, asking for their best practices, compiling their reports and plans for my own research.

Never, as a potential fundraiser, should YOU feel that YOU can’t approach those who have gone before YOU. BUT, I challenge YOU to do an activity before YOU pick up the phone/send an email; something that will help YOU in your planning and as a courtesy to those YOU may seek help from.

As Simon Sinek says, Start with Why. 

Take out a piece of paper/bring up a blank word processor screen, and write why you want to hold your fundraiser. Your why should be about more than awareness, funds or volunteer hours. It should come from the heart; it should be your key message to those YOU invite to participate on why they should join YOU. For many fundraisers, their why is found in their own personal experiences. Sharing a personal experience with others, creates a bond, forms a relationship. And as we know, fundraising, is about relationships.

Once you have your why, then start to jot down your “how.” In event planning, this can also be called a “tactic.” Here, as a fundraiser, chances are YOU would put your event. Start to brainstorm your own “what’s” on how you see the event taking shape, but always keep in mind your why. If you want to “change the homeless youth landscape of your city,” you might not want to hold an event in a luxury hotel.  Writing your ideas down will help YOU when YOU call and ask for guidance from other fundraisers.

As always, the Alzheimer Society of Nova Scotia is here to help YOU with your plans. Call or email us anytime. We have even more tools to help YOU plan and fundraise! Including a new online system that lets you tell your why with pictures and stories!


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