Becky Fausett essay

In the rural Nebraska town where I live we have a non-profit organization that works to help feed our citizens in need. Project Hunger is entirely volunteer run which allows 97 cents out of every dollar to go directly to feeding the hungry. Our town has a population of just over 51,000 so that can be a lot of hungry mouths to feed.

In order to help raise funds for this great cause we held a raffle. The prize? A side of beef of course. What could be more fitting for a hunger organization from the Beef State?

Since we wanted to have a raffle we first needed to obtain the prize. We approached a locally owned grocery store with our idea and it didn’t take long to get them on board. Since they make their living right here in our community they see the great need we have to take care of one another. However, since they are trying to make a living themselves they aren’t able to do very much for free. We negotiated with them and eventually agreed to pay half price for the beef.

Next, we needed to have clear, attractive advertising for our raffle and the excellent prize. One of the Project Hunger board members owns a printing company so we didn’t have as much leg work to do there. He quickly volunteered his staff to make up a couple large posters that could easily display the raffle details.

Finally, on the day of our Fall Festival event we set up our posters in easily visible areas. Once the event started volunteers spent two hours walking around and asking people if they would like to buy any raffle tickets. To help entice sales we sold the tickets for $5 a piece or 3 for $10. It was a big hit and we sold over 200 tickets.

Having a great prize and raising money for a worthy organization went hand in hand to help us with the sales. Additionally, we have done this raffle for a few years in a row now and our community members have fallen in love with it. As we were selling tickets multiple people told us that they had been looking forward to the event and they hope they get to be the lucky winner this year.

The money we raised from those tickets went directly to needy families in our town in one of two ways; providing milk, eggs, and other essential food products or providing a special Thanksgiving meal including a ham, potatoes, stuffing, rolls, and pumpkin pie. I’m not directly involved in connecting these families with the food, but knowing that there is even one less hungry person in our town or one family that gets to enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving meal makes my heart happy. Having the opportunity to assist with this raffle showed me how the efforts of a few people can make a large impact. By donating just a few hours or dollars tens if not hundreds of people received something that is so easily taken for granted by others; a satisfied stomach.

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