Fun way to raise money in Austin: Collect clothing donations!

Photo by Artificial Photography on Unsplash

Savers, a chain of thrift stories that carries clothing, household goods, books and more, is upping its donation-services in Austin, and Jennifer Smith wants more nonprofits and organizations to take advantage of this easy fundraiser.

We asked her about how it works, whom it’s best for and how much we stand to make.

1, Why host a FUNDrive?
This fundraiser is really such a unique, and refreshing approach to fundraising. There are no upfront costs, and you are not asking for monetary donations from your donors, just simply asking to clean out your closets and cabinets! Also as we approach back to school season, with parents buying because they have outgrown their current clothes or just buying new items for the upcoming year, this is such a great time to host a FUNDrive and collect those items that would otherwise be donated or thrown out. Last year, more than 5,350 nonprofits utilized our FUNDrive program. In total Savers has paid more than $2.6 million out to various nonprofits!

2. What kinds of organizations should consider doing a Savers Fundrive?
We welcome all non-profit groups in the greater Austin area! The only requirement is that they must be a 501c3 and have a 9 digit EIN number. Some groups that we have worked with are: Church and youth ministries, all ages sports teams, Elementary, Middle, and High Schools, College student organizations, Fraternities/Sororities, Band, Choir, dance, High School project graduation, Robotics teams, Art programs, pet shelters, and All other Non-profits.

3. How do they get started?
They can go to the website to register and learn more. After that, I will contact them to schedule a drop off date and help coach them to success!

4. What are some of the more clever or successful tactics an organization might use to collect goods?

-Call upon your members/volunteers by informing them through a detailed email on what they need to collect and where to drop items off to you as you pre-collect.
-If you are a smaller non-profit, reach out to groups/organizations looking for service hours. They can host a FUNDrive on your behalf!
-We have had such success with High School Football and band groups, utilizing their trailers/school as a great pre-collection site. They also send out a detailed flyer of what they are collecting, and take upcoming school events (football games) to use that as another drop off location

5. How long should the drive last?
Pre-collection is key, to raise the most funds. At least a 3 week window from beginning to delivery gives a great time structure to allow a successful event. We have so many great tools and templates to use. We encourage all groups to have a goal, an amount they would like to raise. This way we can structure the drive with benchmarks at the 1, 2, and 3 week window. This also keeps your donors up to date on your progress!

6. Are there ways to increase the amount you can earn?
Yes! Really focusing on a mix of the two categories- soft goods and hard goods. This will really maximize your profit, focusing on the highest payments we provide.

For more information, visit the FUNdrive website.

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