A walk-a-thon is a door-to-door fundraiser!
I know, that sounds bad. It sounds like I'm shouting. Let me apologize in advance for my tone and bad behavior.
As a fundraising professional, I hear people say that they want to avoid door-to-door fundraisers and then announce they are considering a walkathon. The irony here is that, of course, the walk-a-thon is a door-to-door fundraiser. If done wrong, it's the most offensive type. Argh.
Other than bringing the form to work, the main way people get pledges for a walkathon is by door-to-door selling.
But the fundraising landscape has changed. Top product fundraising companies do not want students going door-to-door. In fact, nationwide websites have been created to assist in extending a school fundraiser beyond just parents.
In the case of my company Believe Kids, we pioneered the first social media campaign where parents can easily promote a school fundraiser via Facebook, Myspace and Twitter. This is a major departure from the desire to have parents alone support fundraising locally.
It truly takes school fundraising nationwide like never before.
What I am doing is pointing out that the impression people have that school fundraising with catalogs or products is all about door-to-door selling - it's just not accurate today.
I am well aware that everyone has their own tactics when it comes to fundraising and schools and groups all across the nation have success in different areas of fundraising. What I am saying is that it's great that everyone out there hosts fundraisers in their own way.
I am upset that catalog fundraising is so tied to door-to-door selling. You'd think that it was the only door-to-door fundraiser out there - not so.
Having said that, I get it, anyone complaining about door-to-door fundraising is most likely referring to the past where fundraising was done with product in hand and sold in neighborhoods everywhere - It's just no longer the case.
So, here is a word document template from Microsoft. It is a donation pledge sign-up sheet for a walkathon and includes absolutely no reference to fundraising safety or instructions for not going door-to-door.
1) Make sure to include a safety area on the form indicating that there should be no selling at night or at busy intersections. Also, please indicate that there should be no door-to-door selling to people they don't know.