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Friday, January 16, 2015

Donors Choose - Getting Your Project Funded!


You know that you'd love to have that iPad for your classroom. Or maybe you've been dreaming of a class set of clipboards -- Donors Choose is the site for you! 

If you haven't heard of DonorsChoose.org, it is a site where teachers can post projects (things they need for the classroom) and people can donate from all over the world. 


I could go on and on about how to set up your account and how to go shopping but there's already resources out there for that. 



I want to share with you my best advice to get your project fully funded...and quickly! 


Once I my project was approved I shared the link with everyone. I also talked about it ALL the time! My hope was that if I talked about it in the classroom that the students would begin talking about it at home. Sure enough...they did. 

I chose not to send out intentional "GIVE US MONEY" emails but I tucked it into weekly emails and our newsletter. Each week I sent a progress report to our families. I also made sure to tell the kids each time we got closer to our goal. 

Caring Classrooms is one of the coolest Facebook pages I have come across. The page's purpose is to spread the word about Donors Choose projects. On the page you'll find rules on how to submit your project. This is definitely a page you want to follow, if you can get your project on here you'll get TONS of exposure and you'll be one step closer to fully funding your project.


Get that super cute picture of your kiddos (with parent permission of course), compose a letter with your Donors Choose information, and put their sweet signatures at the bottom of the page - once you have this head on out into the community. Hit up some of your local businesses after school. Remember that letter you made earlier, with the cute picture and the scribbled signatures, leave that with the business owners. No one can say no to cute kids. At least not to your face lol! 

Make sure you let everyone know that their donation will be matched by Donors Choose if they make a donation within the first 7 days of your project being posted. This should be included in your newsletter, on your class blog/website, everywhere! 

Now...this option might not work for everyone, but I wanted to share anyway! If you run a TPT store offer to trade FREE PRODUCTS for donations. I advertised on my A Trendy Teacher page that if anyone made a $5 donation they could email me and receive a free product from my store. Of course this was a no-brainer, it cost me nothing! I also made sure to run this special during the first 7 days so that donations would be matched.

What are your best Donors Choose tips? Have you gotten any projects funded? What would you do differently next time?


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