Fundraising and Social Media

Updated on September 21, 2015
T.R. asks from Altamonte Springs, FL
17 answers

My daughter's school is doing a fundraising event for the American Heart Association and she is participating, she is in 2nd grade. Their website suggested to post on social media for friends and family to donate (I only use FB). What is your opinion on this?

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answers from Chicago on

I don't have a problem with these kinds of things. If I'm interested in donating I do. If not I ignore it.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Personally I would scroll right past it. 1) because there are a million kids' fundraisers and my kids all have their own and 2) the AHA is already well funded and through it's "heart healthy" food recommendations has actually advanced heart disease and diabetes by promoting sugar and demonizing fat for decades.

But that's neither here nor there (sorry for the editorial but the AHA really drives me crazy because it's so, so wrong and won't admit it).

Lot's of people post these on FB - if it catches the attention of a friend or relative who isn't overwhelmed with other requests, then you may snag some extra donations. I wouldn't market this too hard though - if it's jump rope for heart or something similar, they're not expecting huge donations anyway, just a few dollars will do.

2 moms found this helpful

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answers from Norfolk on

Oooh - major pet peeve of mine!

I refuse to pimp my kid.
My time is valuable - and I refuse to be an unpaid employee of any fund raising organization.

Somehow they've found a loophole in child labor laws but really it's a way to get parents to work for NOTHING.

Many causes in question get maybe a %25 return on the money spent on stuff no one really wants and most sellers get rewards you could buy from your local dollar store.
I've done this.
When our son was upset that he couldn't 'earn' a rubber duckie by fundraising participation I got him the exact same duckie for a few dollars and WAY less time and effort than providing order entry/accounts payable/accounts receivable/warehouse services/delivery for whatever they were pushing at the time.

If the PTA (or local volunteer fire department) has a way for me to write them a check directly, then they get money from me otherwise they get nothing.

I don't really care what the cause/disease de jour is.
The fund raising industry has come up with a way to make heart rending causes PROFITABLE - and I have a problem with that.

Since your daughter is participating, write her a check and leave it at that.
If she wants what ever prize they are offering, go to a Dollar store and get it for her.
There will be fund raising events all year long.
Decide how many of these you want to dance with.
Early on when our son was in pre school we did a few - and it never ends.
Eventually I just decided not to deal with it anymore.
I write a check when I can afford it and I know that %100 of my donation goes where I want it to go and that is all I'll do.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I would personally just write them a check and not post on social media for something like this... School fundraising.

Last Thursday was North TX Giving day which is a huge event in our area done once a year. This year donations surpassed 33 million! This is an event where non-profits get donations. I did like and share posts my daughter made for the non-profit she was working for free for the last month through her brand development and marketing courses at college. Her non-profit received $912 last year on giving day and on this giving day, they hit $2505 with her help in getting the word out on social media.

I don't support everyone posting their fundraisers all over social media.

I'm ok with the once a year campaign in my area like Giving Day and I also support Kidds Kids on the one day they have geared to fundraising for the children.

So to your specific question... No

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I think it's fine to post on Facebook, just don't keep posting it multiple times. I would say twice is ok - once now, and once more a couple of days before the end of the fundraising drive as a "last chance." People who don't want to donate will ignore it. Consider putting up a cute picture of your daughter with a sign for American Heart Assn or a short video of her asking for support. People may be more likely to give if the request is seen as coming from her, rather than from you.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

I don't ask anybody to donate to the causes I support. If I want to support a cause I will simply write a check and be done with it. I understand that grandparents and close friends may feel obligated to support a cause my child is fund raising for and I think that is so wrong.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Rochester on

The one year my daughter did Jumprope for Heart we did the social media basically just for my parents to access. They were the only ones who used it, but I didn't ask anyone else to donate. It was kind of a pain to set up and I still get emails from them two years later. And the little rubber ducky she got for doing the online donation ended up in our garage sale box almost right away.

After that first year my daughter (who will probably be a future activist) learned some things about the program that she didn't like. The AHA uses kids with heart defects in the Jumprope campaign but basically they use 0% of the money raised for kids with heart defects. They use kids to get sympathy donations. My daughter refuses to raise money for them now. Heart defects are a very important cause for us, but we donate directly to organizations and individuals that we know will use the money directly for kids with defects.

Sorry for getting on my soapbox. The more I learn about the AHA, the less respect I have for them. I know several adults who are active in the Adults with Congenital Heart Defects group. They have called AHA out not only for Jumprope for the Heart but also for distributing misleading and inaccurate information about adult CHDs. My daughter has even talked about getting her PE teacher to drop Jumprope for Heart.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

This is the same school that can't make up its mind about uniforms??

Sorry - while I support AHA - I would NOT post this on my FB wall. I get they want more money. I get they want more exposure...however...I don't like **THIS**. I will not pan-handle for them.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

The whole thing whole thing annoys me. I don't like that kids are made to feel left out if their parents don't want to/can't support some organization chosen by the school. Your parents have money and can donate? You get prizes and recognition. Your parents can't afford to donate? Oh, sorry, you just sit and watch wealthier kids get rewarded. The whole concept stinks.

So, I don't participate in the school wide fundraisers out of principle. I definitely don't put it on my social media.

ETA: I have no problem with people posting a fundraiser for something that they feel passionate about. It is these school wide events that basically bribe/peer pressure kids into raising funds that I object to.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

Haven't been in this position yet... hope not to be.

We have started just writing a cheque from ourselves instead of bothering people. The exception is going door to door selling cookies or chocolate bars. Our neighborhood actually supports that wholeheartedly (we sell out).

Personally, I think kids should be involved. We have one set of kids who set up a stand and have home made doggie treats, bake sale and lemonade. Everyone stops. Big sign "All proceeds go to...". But if you really didn't want to, easily drive on by.

If you're ok with posting it to your close friends and just family, I would just limit your audience (change privacy settings for that one post).

Good luck :)

I have to sell a million bulbs this year for one of my kids. I guess I'll have a ton of daffodils next spring ...

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Erie on

If you choose to do this, don't post about it more than twice. People tend to ignore subsequent requests. Asking for donations through email will probably get you better results. We found that the FB response to online funding requests was better than any other avenue we pursued (we had a Kickstarter to raise money to start a business).

I personally refuse to donate to large organizations like AHA, since so much of the funding goes to management costs.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Burlington on

Post it on facebook seems like a good idea, just don't do it multiple times, might put people off.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

I have school age kids and this stuff happens all the time. I do not find it offensive at all. In fact, I do it too for fundraising for charities I'm involved in and honestly, it works! I've helped my friends' kids for Jump Rope for Heart lots of times. I don't mind doing it. I say do it and don't feel bad about it.

I do agree that sending an email to a specific person is a good idea too. Some people like to feel like you are taking the time to talk to them. You could have your kid record a video message too and post that on FB along with the donation site. Kids are hard to resist. You can also send a personal FB message to some of the people too. Or have your kid record specific videos for aunts, uncles, grandparents, whatever. It's also nice to have your child call certain people on the phone or go door to door to immediate neighbors, but social media reaches a lot of people and it's pretty stress free and easy.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

I think there's just so much of it on Facebook, people are bombarded. Someone's always doing a walk for suicide prevention or a relay for cancer. Many are good causes and on behalf of reputation charities that give a good percentage of the funds raised to research or patient services (vs. overhead and executive salaries and more fundraising).

However, I have a problem if the kids think that the way to raise funds is to have parents put stuff on social media or take a cookie/nut/wrapping paper sales brochure to the office. It turns into a competition for prizes among kids - with the "winning" kids being those who have large extended families or parents who are supervisors in large offices.

I think it's important for the kids to actually WORK to raise funds. Door-to-door is time consuming (which is okay) but requires kids to make little speeches (not always good for shy kids or those with any type of social issues). But I do think large group yard sales can be very positive - kids learn about work (preparation, advertising, set-up, clean-up, item organization, money management), first of all. And neighbors/friends/relatives are much more likely to donate items they want to get rid of (without the hassle of holding their own sale, especially if they don't have a ton of stuff) when kids are doing the work and when the donations go to a good cause. In our town, owners of a large property on the main street often donate their parking lot and the adjacent lawn space for worthy groups holding plant sales, yard sales and so on. There's a lot of visibility and a lot of passerby traffic as well as people who make it their destination after seeing signs or listings on Facebook. And there are free yard sale listings on line and through Craigslist - with the setting being totally safe with so many people around.

I think kids get much more out of it (experience, feeling of accomplishment, funds) when there is real work involved.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

It's okay to post and say "Hey everyone, Kiddo is doing a fund raiser where the proceeds will go to the American Heart Association. If you would like to donate please click on the link below and thank you very much. By participating in this fund raiser Kiddo will gain knowledge, compassion for those who have heart disease, and she'll be able to ......"

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

i don't mind seeing a fundraising request on FB. in fact i'll be going to one (picking flowers at a local farm, 40% goes to my young friend's gymnastic group) this coming weekend.
i do prefer to do donate to little things like that, not huge groups like the AHA. but i don't think it's a bad thing to put it out there.
just do it once, though, don't keep peppering people with it.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

I hate posting these things myself, however, donate to certain causes seen on FB. However, I do post them.

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