At Apache Junction, Ariz., Lodge 2349, St. Patrick’s Day is a big deal! The Lodge hosts a St. Patrick’s Day celebration every year featuring corned beef and cabbage with lots of drink specials. And Lodge ENF Chair Roni Griffith sees this occasion as an opportunity to acquire more than just the luck o’ the Irish – she uses it to fundraise for the ENF!
Griffith sets up a raffle every year and pulls the winner at the St. Patrick’s Day celebration. Though she sells some tickets in advance, the majority of tickets are purchased at the party when the Lodge is packed with festive members and ENF donors. Last year, Griffith’s St. Patrick’s Day fundraiser brought the Apache Junction Lodge’s donations over the per-capita goal.
This year, Griffith got a head start, raising $3,000 by soliciting ENF donations with the Lodge’s dues mailing. She also promotes online giving every month in the Lodge newsletter.
“The easiest ways to donate seem to be the most popular,” says Griffith. “Giving online or with a dues payment is simple and quick. And asking for money for a raffle is painless, because there’s a prize involved!”
It’s important to make donating easy and painless when members are pinching pennies. Griffith noticed a change in the giving habits of Lodge members when the economy started to lag.
“Everyone is being more careful and conservative with their money,” she says. “It affects every aspect of their spending, from charitable donations to the way they’re enjoying themselves socially.”
Griffith suggests providing opportunities for members to make smaller donations to the Foundation throughout the year. Making a large gift can be overwhelming for someone on a tight budget, but smaller gifts in installments are just as generous!
What’s your Lodge’s biggest social event of the year? Consider incorporating a fundraiser for the ENF as part of that event! It worked for Roni Griffith and could work for you, too!