Friends In Need
Above: The artist formerly known as "the foster cat" supervises yet another productive day at TN HQ.
October draws nigh, so it's time for an update on the annual Tomato Nation/Donors Choose fund drive, as well as headlines from a couple of other fund-raising endeavors. Read on!
I've decided to postpone our big annual drive until March 2011. Donors Choose is changing their own approach to the October challenge, which is part of it (and I'll know more about that by the middle of next week). Mostly, though, it's that you guys put together $314,000 during last year's contest. Three hundred fourteen THOUSAND DOLLARS. In a recession. And the giving page currently stands at close to four hundred thousand…never mind your lifetime total raised as a readership.
It's obvious that, together, we can do this. We've done it, against all odds, again and again. The issue is one of management; many many "proper" non-profits with proper tax exemptions and proper office space don't clear as much money in a whole year as we do in a single month every year, and they have dedicated staff, dedicated software, and so on and so forth. I have The Greatest Intern Ever Told, and she is formidable, but I could barely pay her at all, much less what she's worth, and for the month of October and another fortnight on either side, we both kind of had to live in the spreadsheet — I couldn't take on other jobs for two months. It was worth it…but it can't continue.
I love doing the contest, I am fiercely proud of you guys, and I think there's a better, more efficient way for us as a community to raise money, bring attention to worthy causes, and help each other out. We've done smaller-scale bursts of love and money before — helped out homeless and ailing pets; done donation trades on breast-cancer runs and AIDS Walks — and maybe breaking it down to monthly drives on a smaller scale is a better idea.
I welcome your thoughts and suggestions.
I also apologize for the sixes-and-sevens-y A.C. jaunt. We didn't have much filming leeway when we got there, which I should have done a better job of planning for. I should have done a better job of planning, period, but Mr. S and I looked at the calendar and went, "Shit, it's been 10 months? All right, we'd better go," and just kind of helter-skeltered on down there without much of a plan. But we got some sweet footage, we'll make a sweet video, and if you missed it, well…let's just say the revitalization of the Atlantic City boardwalk is…not complete.
And now, moving on to a couple of those bursts and love and money I mentioned before…
Piggy Banks for George Mark
Reader Tylia G. sent me an email last week about a fundraiser she's putting together. Here's her story:
I'm wondering if you'd be generous enough to post this on your website. I'm trying to start a fundraiser/contest for a beloved charity of mine called George Mark House in San Leandro, CA, and I know you have some very generous wonderful readers who might be willing to spread their love and their pocketbooks just a little bit. George Mark House is trying to reopen their doors on October 4th and I'd like to make sure their doors reopen without a hitch, which is why I'm doing my fundraiser in September. Any posting or linking to my little fund-raising efforts would be appreciated.
I probably haven't given you the hard sell for why you should post this on your website so please give me an opportunity. My son passed away in April, ten days shy of his second birthday. This organization helped him and us on more than one occasion, up to and including providing a loving place to have his services. I'm merely returning the favor. I'm calling it Piggy Banks for George Mark, and I'd be grateful if you and your readers would be willing to save up their loose change and donate it. You can read all about it in the post linked above but I just want you to know how much this would mean to me coming from you. I've been a fan for a number of years (I still have my GBC t-shirt hanging lovingly in my closet and everything) and I'd be more than appreciative if you'd be willing to post this.
I won't just post it; I'll donate the proceeds of my next trip to the TD Bank change sorter. Readers, if you can help, please do.
AIDS Walk DC
The tomato will ride again in Washington, DC the weekend of October 2, when my AIDS Walk team once again gears up to kick AIDS and HIV in the balls. Hard.
If you live locally (or not…hell, I don't), consider joining Team Supersnack; we'd love to have you. If you don't feel like walking, I feel you, but maybe you could throw me a donation, because check it out: if you make a donation to my fund-raising page, hold on to your receipt until it's time for your AIDS Walk (or Crohn's fun run, or Jump Rope for Heart campaign) and forward it to me. The first ten (10) receipts I receive will get a $20 donation back from yours truly. Expires August 1, 2011.
Tags: AIDSWalk friends George Mark House sites Team Supersnack tiny grey cats