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Breaking New Ground in Private School Fundraising

Mar 2021 - READ IN 4 MINUTES

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No matter the size of the school or the number of advancement staff, our partners always come up with innovative ways to encourage their school community to engage in philanthropy—often with amazing results that exceed expectations. Today we are going to highlight 4 examples of private school fundraising campaigns and what we loved about each one:

Greenwich Country Day School’s Orange vs. Black Alumni March Madness Challenge

Greenwich Country Day School (GCDS) is a pre-K through 12th-grade independent school located in Greenwich, Connecticut. GCDS has had a March Madness Alumni Challenge each year for the past five years. This year, their goal was to bring in 250 donors. Here are some things that stood out to us about this year’s event:

  • GCDS did a great job of gamifying the challenge of private school fundraising, which fit their theme perfectly. This year they decided to pit the odd-numbered class years (orange) against the even-numbered class years (black). This created a friendly competition between class years that span across a generation. What a fun way to build the alumni community while getting all class years involved.
  • GCDS also utilized video extremely well to explain the challenge, communicate why the campaign is important, and give updates to the alumni community. One of our favorite videos they posted was the Tiger Center News Break, which resembled sportscaster updates.
  • GCDS was an early user of  GiveCampus’s new PayPal integration, which led to 17.5% of their gifts coming in from PayPal, with an average gift size of $200—significantly higher than their overall average gift size of $134. That’s what we call a slam dunk in private school fundraising!

Ransom Everglades School’s Raider Day of Giving 2021

Ransom Everglades School (RE) is a 6th through 12th-grade independent school located in Miami, Florida. The theme of their Giving Day was showing the world that big things happen when the RE community comes together. Their goal was to bring in 305 donors in a 24-hour period. Here are some highlights:

  • RE did an excellent job of using the incentives and advocacy features. When a donor would inspire a certain amount of people to give, they would receive RE swag depending on the number of people they inspired to give. RE gave away branded t-shirts, phone chargers, water bottles, tote bags, and hats.
  • RE also used incentives to inspire their community to give. One of our favorites was their grandparent challenge: If 50 grandparents gave, RE would host a smoothie social for their middle and high school students. It clearly worked: RE brought in 66 grandparent donors! Way to think outside of the box.
  • Did they reach their goal? Yes, they did! RE brought in 628 donors, met 205% of their goal, and raised a total of $214,778! Amazing results.

Portsmouth Abbey School’s Giving Day

Portsmouth Abbey School is a 9th through 12th-grade boarding and day school located in Portsmouth, Rhode Island. Their goal was to bring in 500 donors in support of their annual private school fundraising event.

  • What stood out the most to us about Portsmouth Abbey’s campaign was the use of engaging videos throughout the entire campaign. They drew upon their students, faculty, staff and pets to draw diverse stakeholders into their story and give updates to the full community. The videos weren’t fancy, but they were authentic, which made all the difference.
  • Did they reach their goal? Yes they did! Portsmouth Abbey brought in 578 donors, 115% of their goal, and raised a total of $513,181! Showcasing all of those voices from their community was a powerful tool to increase participation.

Notre Dame Preparatory School’s Mardi Gras 2021#giveitup4NDP

Notre Dame Preparatory School (NDP) is a 9th through 12th-grade Catholic school located in Scottsdale, Arizona. NDP had a goal to raise $50,000 in a 24-hour period.

  • What we loved about this campaign is that NDP utilized the function to embed livestream video directly into their campaign. Even better, the livestream was run and produced by students over an eight-hour period. They highlighted different performance groups, the talents of their students, what it’s like to be at NDP, and so much more. NDP was able to give their donors a real-life view into the culture of the school, and the live stream is still available for viewing on their campaign page.
  • Did NDP meet their goal? Yes, they did! NDP raised a total of $86,304, 172% of their goals, through 245 donors. What a great way to entertain donors and to show them the impact of their gift in real time!

As you can see, there are several themes throughout this list–including the use of videos to tell the school’s story and the consistent ability of schools to exceed their goals. The best part? We see these types of results from many of our partner schools in private school fundraising. We are obsessed with ensuring that each of our partners has this same kind of success. Our Partner Success team of expert fundraisers work closely with the innovative staff at each of our partner schools to make their strategy and vision come to life. Click here to read more about our Partner Success Program. Want to learn more about GiveCampus and hear about more amazing success stories? Schedule an introductory call with our team here.

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