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Kaitlyn Marshall

Nonprofit organizations change lives everyday, and it is the small things, like buying a raffle ticket, that make it possible for these dedicated groups to help improve the lives of others. Raffle fundraisers are a prevailing way to raise money because they are well known by most people and benefit both the organization and the raffle ticket buyer. Nonprofit organizations are special to me because I have seen the difference they can make firsthand. As a freshman in college, I was awarded the opportunity to choose the best nonprofit fit for a class fund of $25,000. With this money, and a lot of hard work proving the worthiness of different nonprofits, my classmates and I were able to fund a school in Ghana for 85 students. The pictures and information we have received back from the nonprofit prove just how important an education is to the people living in extreme poverty across many countries throughout the world. Funding for these nonprofits is crucial, and raffle fundraisers could make a big difference.

To maximize the sales of raffle fundraisers, I would first tackle the awareness of the nonprofit and the fundraiser itself. From my own experience, putting up posters around a school, campus, or office building would give people the opportunity to learn about ways to give back to the community using raffle fundraisers. Spreading the word through social media could also help to maximize these sales. Because of the importance of social media in today’s society, a simple post explaining the purpose of the nonprofit and the details of the raffle fundraiser could be shared and spread to people across the world. An even better way to maximize the sales would be to set up an online purchasing method, where people that see the social media posts could purchase their tickets and sent an email if they win the prize.

To decide which prizes to use, I would first look at the target of the fundraiser and decide what would be most appealing and cost-effective. From the perspective of a college student, any nonprofits trying to reach out to us would be best-off by offering cheap prizes, such as gift cards to restaurants close to campus, or even expensive prizes, like laptops or speakers. All of these items would be highly useful to college students, therefore increasing the amount of raffle ticket sales. The better the prizes, the more people will want to partake in the raffle.

Although prizes give people the incentive to purchase raffle tickets, it can be continually discouraging trying to sell tickets to people who will not buy them. My high school drill team had a fundraiser each year, where each team member had to sell at least 20 discount cards for places around our town. It was very similar to selling raffle tickets. For every ten cards each person sold, we got to draw a poker chip out of bag, signifying anywhere from $5 to $50. And then, the top 5 sellers we get to go in the tornado machine, where the objective was to grab as much money that was flying around as possible. These incentives gave me the motivation to sell as many cards as I could, and I even got to take a few turns in the tornado machine. Incentives are very important for the volunteers selling raffle tickets, but when it comes to nonprofits, there is nothing better than knowing that the hard work spent on selling tickets will be paid off when the nonprofit is able to help someone in need.

Nonprofits are used more often than not, in churches, schools, sports, and many other institutions throughout life. Raffle fundraisers can help these organizations raise funds for their philanthropies because of their simplicity and benefits for everyone. Spending money on a nonprofit leaves people with that “warm” feeling, but also knowing that they could win a gift card or a new iPad makes it even better.