A neighbor that donated after receiving our letter
This is Personal
People support causes that mean something to them. In most cases their support is meant to benefit someone they care about, not themselves. And while some people rush in when they see the need, many others wait to be asked so they can be assured that you want their help.
Every person with an Oligo has a compelling and important story. Their life and their future are at risk. Very few people can understand what this is like. At the same time, there is a real chance that research could change everything…if the funding is there.
Getting your story and message out to you family, friends and community is a powerful and positive way to make a difference in your own life.
Personal Appeal Letter
A personal appeal is probably the easiest and most direct way to start your fundraising efforts. You are sharing your story and asking for help, one-to-one. Once family, friends, and neighbors know that you are committed to raising money to find a treatment for this terrible disease, many of them are going to want to help.
Letters are a lot better than emails for this kind of communication. It reflects the importance of the issue and your effort to communicate directly with them. Pictures are also a very important way to engage emotionally. Your appeal should make the case that there is an opportunity for significant medical breakthroughs in treating Oligos—and that progress is already being made with 9 grants for almost $1 million in the past 3 years.
For some very close friends, finding a time to talk to them in person about your effort can be a good idea, but leave them with your written appeal so that they can review it later. You can follow up a week or two later with email just saying you are available to answer any questions they may have.
Do these appeals work? Absolutely! Results vary, of course, but $5,000 to $25,000 is the range we have seen in most cases.
To see examples of personal appeals and some suggestions for writing your own, download the kit below:
Love it or not, Facebook is the way a lot of people stay in touch with their extended network of friends and acquaintances. And fundraising on Facebook has become a common—and effective—approach.
Just like in a personal appeal letter, a Facebook fundraiser is driven by telling your story and asking for your community’s help. And you know how Facebook works, anything older than 1 hour ago drops out of sight, so you need to keep it fresh and invite people, repost, etc. We have seen people raise anywhere from $200 to $13,000 with a FB fundraiser.
As an IRS approved non-profit, you can create a personal fundraising on Facebook that benefits Oligo Nation. And Facebook doesn’t take a cut, so 100% goes to Oligo Nation.
Get the How-to on Oligo Nation Facebook Fundraisers (link to PDF)
Other Crowd Sourcing
There are any number of crowd sourcing programs that can accommodate non-profit efforts (Kickstarter, Indiegogo, USEED). In order to have funds raised go to Oligo Nation, you may need a letter of authorization from Oligo Nation. Please feel free to contact us.