Tuesday 19 Apr, 2016

Fundraise For Your Tour with a Local Pay It Forward Approach

Sue B. and Gen A. have passionately educated students both inside and outside of the classroom. Between the two of them, they have 49 years of combined teaching experience, and have led a total of 14 EF tours. Both believe that travel inspires students to seek out their dreams and approach the world with confidence and enthusiasm.

Many teachers want to help their students fundraise for their trip. But at the same time, it’s important that students take responsibility for it as well. To help with this we implemented the Pay it Forward fundraiser, where students can practice self-initiative, but also become actively involved in the community and earn money for their trip.

Sue B. and Gen A.

The idea is that someone’s trip donation is earned by the student volunteering his or her time to work in the community. Here are the five Pay it Forward fundraiser steps for you and your students to follow:

Find a place to volunteer
The Group Leader’s main responsibility is reaching out to local organizations and creating a network of places where students can volunteer. For us, some of these places have been the Good Samaritan Thrift store, Humane Society, and local conservation groups.

Set a goal and stay focused
It is important that students understand what their end goal is. To help with this, we ask each student to write down the number of pledges they want to collect and how much money they want to raise. This way we can help them stay focused. We have found that when they decide what their goal is they’re more inclined to work towards it, and in many cases, easily surpass it.

Get the word out and collect pledges
The student’s job here is to simply collect pledges from as many people as possible to sponsor their hard work. For example, a student who collects 100 pledges at $5 an hour, will earn $2,000 for their volunteer work (see below for an example). In our experience it also helps if you collect the donations at the time of the pledge.

The hard part for students is getting those 100 pledges. Students usually ask family, friends, neighbors, and teachers to sponsor them. When a student is speaking to a potential pledge they should make sure they mention the following:

– Our goal is to help our community while also trying to raise money for an educational trip.

– Our educational trip will help broaden our global awareness and perspective through cultural experiences like…

– We would appreciate your support by pledging $5 per hour for me to volunteer 4 hours of community service (a total of $20) and pay forward your donation.

Earn it and help make a difference
After collecting pledges it is then up to the students to select from the community service options that you have provided and earn their donations while also helping to improve their local community.

Thank your pledges and share the experience!
Take pictures of your trip and volunteer work. This way when you return you can say thank you on social media to all of your pledges by sharing with them the great experiences you had abroad and in your own community.

Talk with an EF Tour Consultant today and learn how to build a student travel program in your community!