Our Volunteer Guide to the
Fundraising for your Trip
Outreach360 is both a volunteer and fundraising organization. We ask all our volunteers to commit to helping raise funds for the programs we sponsor based on the length of their stay. (See more on volunteer costs here.) We encourage volunteers not to pay any of their program donations out of pocket but instead to raise the funds using a fundraising page that we will provide you upon registration.
Something to Consider
Some volunteers are concerned about fundraising for their trip; they worry that they'll be bothering people, that friends and family will feel pressured to donate or that their intentions will be misunderstood. We invite you to take on a different outlook: don’t keep this unique opportunity to yourself. Be generous with sharing this experience with your community! Others want to make a difference in the world, too, but not everyone can give a week or more of their time to volunteer. Give them the opportunity to make that decision for themselves. More often than not, they're grateful to be able to give on behalf of a volunteer they trust will make the most of their donation. Not to mention, you will also be spreading awareness about this important cause. We have been blessed to live in a wealthy country, surrounded by people with resources who are interested in making a difference in the world. Working hard pre-trip to meet and exceed the minimum program donation will make your experience that much more rewarding and give you the chance to include the people in your life.
When you register for an Outreach360 trip, a personal fundraising page will automatically be created on your behalf. We encourage you to use this as a resource to raise your minimum program donation and more! We find that the most effective and efficient way to raise funds is simply by sending emails to friends and family asking for their support and sharing the link on your social media. A sample fund-raising email is included at the bottom of this page.
Set a Goal
Set objectives for what you and your team would like to raise. We encourage you to look beyond the minimum program donation required and think big. What could you and your team accomplish if you really set your mind to it? For example, could you and/or your team raise enough money to build additional classroom space?
We encourage you to start the fundraising process early and give you and your donors plenty of time. Then you can focus on really preparing for your Outreach360 experience rather than worrying about finding last-minute funding.
Make a List
The more people you invite to donate, the more successful you'll be in raising crucial funds for our students and this incredible experience you're about to embark on! Once you start writing down a list of potential donors, the quicker you'll realize they're all around you. Write down names from of everyone your family would send a holiday card to, coworkers, classmates, local organizations, foundations and companies in your area. Everyone is a potential donor, and although not all of the people on your list will respond, it never hurts to ask. Don’t limit yourself; think big!
Many donors don’t know what is an appropriate amount to give. Some might be thinking $10 while others are thinking $100 or more. Express to donors what your fundraising goal is and give them options to donate. A donor is much more likely to give if they are presented with an option rather than a “yes” or “no” decision. You may even want to outline your goals for the additional funds you are trying to raise.
Acknowledge your Sponsors
Be sure that you acknowledge your donors for the difference they have made. Donors will also want to know about your experience and the tremendous impact you have had; be sure to share your experiences with your donors through stories and pictures once you return. All U.S. donors that donate online will receive a tax-deductible receipt via email. Any donors that send in checks to our main office will receive a tax-deductible receipt at the end of the year.
It probably won’t take you more than an hour to send a fundraising e-mail to your list of potential donors; we find it the most effective way to raise funds. However, be creative with your fundraising ideas, too. There are many great options to raising funds, and we encourage you to think outside of the box. Involve your church, dorm, service organization, etc. Fundraisers such as yard sales, spaghetti dinners, or pancake breakfasts can be surprisingly successful. You might consider offering four hours of personal service (running errands, babysitting, grocery shopping, yard work, etc.) to everyone who donates $100 or more. They will know you are serious about the trip!
Grants & Scholarships
We don't want our program donation to stand in the way of you making an enormous difference in the communities we serve. That's why we offer a few scholarships depending on when you sign up, the size of your team, and the work you're putting in pre-trip. Take a look at our page on volunteer costs for more information. If you attend a university, we also encourage you to reach out to your dean of students or volunteer center for additional grants or scholarships.
Many companies want to promote volunteering and donating with their employees and therefore have programs available to match donations. Matching gifts are a great way to double your fundraising impact. You may be able to take advantage of your company's matching gift program, or possibly the company of your spouse, parent, relative or friend. We encourage you to use the reach out to the Human Resources department at your company to verify the availability of their matching program and its guidelines. the company specification may affect whether or not the funds are in on time to count towards your volunteer trip. Some matching gift programs have time limits on requests, so it is best to reach out as soon as possible. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about your program donation. You may need to fill out forms for your company to process their matching donation, below is some information they'll likely be looking for:
Name of Organization: Outreach360
Tax Identification Number: 58-2197227
Address: Outreach360; 7954 W. Fetlock Trail; Peoria, AZ 85383
Checks should be made out to Outreach360; we recommend that you have all checks sent to you for consolidation and then you can forward them to us. You might consider sending in your checks every two to three weeks so that your donor is not wondering why their check hasn't been processed. You can send all checks to this address: Outreach360; 7954 W. Fetlock Trail; Peoria, AZ 85383. Please place your name on the outside of the envelope so we know to apply the received funds to the correct fundraising page.
All payments made to Outreach360 are tax-deductible donations. As such, the donor no longer controls those funds. Donations are non-refundable, as that would jeopardize our tax-exempt status. If your trip needs to be canceled for any reason, we will set aside those funds as a credit towards a trip taken within 12 months or the original trip dates. Those credits cannot be transferred to another volunteer or team.
If you want confirmation that a letter containing cash or check donations arrived at our office, please purchase delivery confirmation from the post office. However, you should see those donations reflected on your personal fundraising page once we receive it.
Checks need to be made out to Outreach360 in order to receive a tax receipt from Outreach360. If people write a check directly to you or give you cash they will not receive a tax receipt from Outreach360.
We will send a thank you letter, tax receipt, and newsletter to all donors by the end of the year. We suggest that you also send a personal thank you letter after your trip.
Funds raised above the minimum program donation are non-refundable and will be used at Outreach360's discretion.
Sample Fundraising Letter
This sample fundraising letter/email should be used as a guide. Please personalize it or make any edits so that you feel good about sharing it with your list of potential donors.
Dear Friends and Family,
I have decided to donate my time volunteering with the non-profit organization Outreach360 in the Dominican Republic. Outreach360 has been working in the Dominican Republic since 1994, and in Nicaragua since 2010. Over 22,000 volunteers have joined Outreach360 in their mission to transform the world so that every child grows up living a Life of Choice. Outreach360 volunteers work in underserved neighborhoods, where the need for quality education is huge. The lack of educational opportunities there results in entire neighborhoods of children growing up either out of school or entirely unprepared for college or a job upon graduation.
Each Outreach360 volunteer has two significant roles: to donate important volunteer time while in the in-country and to help raise crucial funds to help support Outreach360 students. As a volunteer, I will be working at Outreach360's Learning Center teach English to the students there. English is an important skill in Latin America in that it provides better access to jobs and quality schools. Often, the first question an employer will ask at a job interview in the Dominican Republic is, “Do you speak English?” As a fundraiser, I am helping to raise funds to not only cover my expenses, but to also provide crucial funds for the program: construction, maintenance, teaching staff, supplies, and more. I have already paid for my airline ticket and donated $100 of my own money. My goal is to raise an additional $2000, which is due by xx/xx/xxxx.
I'm writing to you to invite you to be a partner with me in this effort. Your donation will make a significant difference in these children’s lives. Outreach360 is a small organization, is not government funded, and relies on the tax-deductible donations of individuals. That's why for each $100 donation, I will be providing four hours of personal services, such as babysitting, personal errands, yard work, etc.!
If you are willing to help, please make out your check to Outreach360 (a tax-deductible 501-C-3 organization; U.S. Federal Tax ID #58-2197227), and send it to me at my address so that I can forward your check onto Outreach360, or use this link to my personal fundraising page to make a donation:
If you have any questions, please call me at (111) 111-1111 or e-mail me at email@example.com. You can also call Tom Eklund, President and CEO of Outreach360, at (602) 375-2900. Outreach360 also has a very informative website: www.outreach360.org.
Thank you so much for your help. Any amount that you are able to donate will be greatly appreciated!