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Belinda Aye

I first learned about the exciting process of raffle tickets in the fourth grade. My teacher would have a large roll sitting on her desk and she would use them as incentives for my classmates and myself to be good role models in the classroom. By doing things as simple as keeping our desks neat and double checking our work after multiplication quizzes, we all had a chance to earn a coveted blue raffle ticket. At the end of every month she would hold the raffle and we would have a chance to win a pouch of little things such as scented erasers, colorful pencils, and new books that I remember thinking were so valuable at the time. Looking back now, I know the items were quite trivial, but they were much more effective in encouraging a motivating environment than I would have ever thought.

             Though useful, the point of my anecdote was not to emphasize the use of prizes. Instead, I wanted to focus on the combination of both intriguing prizes for the potential winners as well as a benefit for the supplier of the tickets that made the whole raffle process a success. It was a win-win situation in my teacher’s classroom as she got an orderly classroom while the students all had a chance to win what they thought were very important prizes. In the case of volunteers offering their time for non-profit organizations, rather than having the fact that they are supporting their cause be the only incentive to maximize sale of tickets, suppliers can consider offering prizes to the volunteers as well. An exclusive prize separate from the public can give volunteers a more personal motivation to sell more tickets to work towards a goal. They can also be offered raffle tickets of their own to be entered for a chance to win the primary prize.

            In terms of prizes, they should be catered to the population they are aiming to reach in order to fully encourage the sale of raffle tickets. No one is going to want to put their money into a chance at winning something that is irrelevant to them no matter how expensive it may be. The prizes should also be things that one would not normally be able to obtain on their own. In the situation of my previous classroom, the seemingly ordinary prizes were deemed valuable to fourth graders as they were only obtainable through book orders they would have to pay for themselves. To cater the prize to the population, perhaps think about the organization. What are some things that the people of the church or youth groups are interested in today? Whether it be the latest pair of shoes or a dinner paid in full with the head of the organization, the prize should be something worth buying a raffle ticket or two for.

            The simple thrill in waiting to hear if your raffle number is called is not enough to encourage ticket sales. A combination of a motivated team of ticket sellers along with a population motivated by a worthy prize should maximize the sale of tickets for non-profit organizations in order to create a surplus that can be used to support their community or cause.  A raffle fundraiser can yield a great benefit for the organization once these factors are taken into consideration.