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Discover And Share Your Fundraising Ideas That Had a Huge Impact

Attention High School And College Students! You could Win A $500 Scholarship!
Win a $500 scholarship

Are you a high school or college student?
Tell us about the positive impact of a past fundraiser!

How Does It Work?
It’s simple! Tell us about a fundraiser that you were involved in, that had a significant impact on yourself and or the cause you were raising money for. Detail any unforgettable emotional moments, major accomplishments, as well as any life skills you learned throughout your fundraising experience.

  • Example 1: tell us about a team fundraiser that allowed your team to enter and travel to the state championships, where you won the finals!
     
  • Example 2: tell us about a charity fundraiser that allowed you to live a mission’s trip abroad, and the positive impact you were able to make.

The Details:
Must be all original content. JustFundraising becomes the owner of your essay content, and we may use it in our various affiliated websites.

  • Length: Minimum of 500 + words
     
  • Scholarship Prize: $500
     
  • Deadline: June 30, 2019.
     
  • Payment: We will submit the payment directly to your name.
     

Submit Your Story:
Once you have completed your 500 + word personal fundraising story, click the button below!

Submit Your Details And Story

Note: The winner is up to the sole discretion of JustFundraising and will be based on the quality of the content.

Questions?
Please email helpdesk@justfundraising.com.

Thank you in advance for your participation!
The JustFundraising Team

Need some inspiration? Visit our Success Stories section!

Past Winners:

Congratulations to Vy from Northeast Magnet High School. The winner of our very first $500 scholarship giveaway! You can read her fundraising story here.

Amazing Fundraising Ideas That Had A Life Changing Impact On These Students

As you'll read below, the impact of fundraising goes well beyond the money it raises. Fundraising often leads to meeting new people, rallying behind a meaningful cause, finding unity, support and love where you'd least expect it, travelling to new places and experiencing memories for a life-time.

We wanted to hear real-life fundraising stories from today's students about how a previous fundraising event may have helped them with their personal development, accomplish a team goal, or be part of something bigger than they ever imagined. Their personal experiences re-confirm that the impact of fundraising reaches far beyond the dollars raised.

Reading these stories will educate and entertain you, and definitely inspire you with some great fundraising ideas for your next fundraiser.

I was diagnosed with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis when I was just three years old. Soon after my diagnosis, Rheumatoid Arthritis had attacked every joint in my body. Growing up with a chronic illness has its struggles, but it has shaped me into the strong, diligent person I am today. I have never let Arthritis stop me from excelling in academics, participating in athletics, and working with the Arthritis Foundation in search of a cure. While there are many setbacks to having Arthritis, this disease has given me the ability to share my story with many. A few years after my diagnosis, my family joined the Arthritis Foundation. It quickly became normal for me to speak at fundraisers, raising awareness for the 300,000 children growing up with Rheumatoid Arthritis.

In October of 2018, I was given the ability to share my story in front of six hundred people. This event was very important to me because the Arthritis Foundation has supported me since the first moments of my diagnosis. I wanted to express my gratitude within this speech, and raise money for everyone who suffers from Arthritis. I want to be part of changing the perspective of the way Rheumatoid Arthritis patients are viewed, and bring as much attention to the foundation as possible. I will never forget how I felt as I stepped up onto the stage that night. I stopped for a moment to take it all in and look around the room before I began speaking. I stepped up to the podium to introduce myself and thank the Arthritis Foundation for this amazing opportunity. I was extremely nervous, I had spent months preparing for this speech and I wanted it to be perfect.

The purpose of my speech was to influence the audience to donate money to the Arthritis Foundation, and to help patients who have a hard time paying the medical bills. Within my speech, I shared my experiences of growing up with Rheumatoid Arthritis and how it has greatly impacted my life. I began by speaking about my early years with Arthritis, where I could barely get out of bed in the morning and walking down the stairs was an everyday struggle. These limitations have motivated me to become an active member of the Arthritis Foundation.

Additionally, I included how important the Arthritis Foundation is to me, and how events like these make it possible for families to overcome the financial struggle of Arthritis. I will never forget the standing ovation I received after the completion of my speech. The applause brought tears to my eyes as I felt so much support in that moment. Immediately following my speech, it was time to ask the audience for donations. The Arthritis Foundation hoped to raise twenty five thousand dollars through this event, and I was nervous that we would not reach this goal. Almost everyone in the room ended up donating to the Arthritis Foundation that night, and raised over fifty thousand dollars.

Throughout my years working with the Arthritis Foundation, I have learned how to be a leader. Additionally, I have realized that my desire to pursue a career in broadcasting came from my experiences of public speaking. Overcoming the physical struggles is always challenging, but sharing my story and communicating with others has brought me absolute happiness. I am forever grateful to the Arthritis Foundation for giving me the opportunity to share my story and showing me that I am more than my disease.

Submitted by: Bridget Boockmeier - Trinity High School

Fundraising was a key aspect to my school’s marching band in order for us to do things such as semi-annual trips to Disney-World. Coming from a very small school, our band is often reliant on fundraising to help more for things such as trips and new uniforms. My final Disney trip with the band was in 2017, my junior year of high school. The Disney trips were always something students looked forward to and we would not be able to do it without fundraising.

In order to help pay for the extreme costs of the trip, the band sold entertainment books, filled with coupons for local restaurants and other stores. With our town being so small and tight-knit, everyone in the community was willing to help us in anyway they can, mostly by purchasing entertainment books or donating directly to the band boosters.

When we finally went last November, it was one of the best weeks of my life. Marching down Main Street in the Magic Kingdom at night with thousands of onlookers watching us and seeing the beautiful night lights of Disney-World is something I will not forget for the rest of my life. The deep bonds that I created with my friends on this trip are those that many people do not have in this day and age. Band has always given me the opportunity to make lifelong friends and the Disney trip made us that much closer. Waiting in long lines gave us the chance to just talk and get to know each other better than we did before. This entire trip would not have been possible without my incredible band director or the great fundraising opportunities we had.

Another aspect of the trip that let us bond are the nights in the hotel. My close friends and I would go to a pizza shop down the street from the hotel, grab a pizza, and go back to the room and talk for hours about anything: personal problems, funny videos on instagram, memories we had in our several years in band, or something as simple as reminiscing on our first football game we performed at. The memories made on the charter bus rides to Orlando and back are just as good, if not better than those made at the park. With our school being in Ohio, we had 18 hours on a bus to laugh, talk, and just enjoy everything our hard work had done to get us there.

With all the seniors getting ready for graduation, the trip to Disney is something all the band students have that no one else does. The trip is something we will talk about for years and surely bring up anytime we see each other post-graduation.

Fundraising gave us the opportunity to make these memories possible and we will forever be closer to each other after the trip. Not many people can say they are as close to their friends as us in band and we are forever grateful for the opportunity provided to us to join the amazing band program at Fairland High School.

Submitted by: Cameron Midkiff - Fairland High School

As the historian of my school's TRI-M (Modern Music Masters) Music Honor Society, my job also doubles as the publicity chairperson. I am responsible for recording our service projects, designing projects, and applying to the Chapter of the Year award. The service project is one of the biggest events my TRI-M chapter does in the year.

Our service project last April was to raise money to purchase hairbrushes, one of the immediate needs, for our local Wichita's Children's Home, the first Wichita orphanage. The Wichita's Children's Home was founded in 1888 and has ever since been offering emergency residential care for homeless children. When I heard we were going to raise money for them, I immediately told my mom I wanted to go around town to local businesses and community members I knew. The Wichita's Children's Home is a place that holds a special spot in my heart because I feel like it is so unfair in the world how so many things are wasted when there are places like orphanages where children not only do not have the privilege to have their own room, but do not even have the PRIVILEGE of having PARENTS, clothes, or even a home. These are all things that every child should have in life, and I wanted to help as much as I could to let them feel like they are loved and thought of, and not just thrown in an orphanage.

I planned to tell the community members about this cause and to personally ask for donations. I knew that as a member of a prestigious honor society, I had a responsibility to be an active member. I set a goal for myself to raise $200. I had no idea how supportive the community would be, and I did not want to set an absurd goal just to be disappointed, especially since this was my first time really going out in the community to ask for donations. To start off, I asked my relatives and they donated $90. Then, I went to some friends and was donated $30. Finally, I went to my doctor's office, two music/instrumental stores, and a few other local businesses. After those visits, I was donated a whopping $325, leading up to the grand total of $445, far from anything disappointing! It took me about a week and a half to finish going around town due to business hours clashing with school hours. After counting the money, I was so happy that not only did I reach my goal, but I surpassed it by $245!

After getting the donations, I made a spreadsheet that organized the donors by name, the amount, and whether they donated cash or a check. Once the spreadsheet was finished, I made sure to create two areas where my school principal and TRI-M chapter adviser could sign off on my hard work. I went to school the next day, very excited, and told my principal about my part in the service project; he then signed my paper and to make it official, even stamped it with the school information. When I got to orchestra, I showed my chapter adviser and he also signed my paper. In the end, our chapter raised over $500 and was able to purchase more than 300 hairbrushes for the children!

Although the turnout was amazing, there were a few challenges I faced during this process. One challenge I faced was rejection. I went to multiple businesses and of course, I was rejected at some point. I did not throw a fit because of the rejection; rather, I thought about if I were in those business' shoes. I have one big rule I like to live life by, and it is to not judge something until I hear both sides of the story. The people who rejected me could just be greedy, but they could also be going through a tough financial time and cannot afford to donate any money. When I think of things that way, I am able to empathize more and not automatically think that someone is just plain greedy. It adds a more positive vibe to my life. Another challenge I faced was time. During the fundraiser, I had not gotten a license yet, so I was not able to drive myself. I had to ask my parents for a ride, but their work times + my school times + business hours did not always agree with each other. To fix this problem, I had to plan ahead which businesses and what times I'd go to in a day.

The impact that this fundraising left on my community is quite remarkable. Not only was I able to raise awareness for people in need in my community to the local businesses and members, but I was also able to help donate items that the Children's Home specifically needed. Raising awareness of these local issues is an important step to help these situations. Many people are so unaware of the local news that sometimes they seem careless. I think informing people is the best, and nicest way to let them know. Hairbrushes might not seem like a big issue, but even something like this could change someone's life and make them happy. This hairbrush drive definitely positively impacted not only the Wichita's Children's Home but my community as a whole!

Submitted by: Hoang Vy Le - Northeast Magnet High School

My name is Sophie Karshner. I am a 17-year-old senior in high school and live in Humble, Texas, right outside of Houston. I am also on the Varsity volleyball team as a middle hitter for my school. Just last year, Hurricane Harvey destroyed my home that I had lived in for 16 years of my life, and all my belongings and the belongings of my parents were washed away in eight-foot-tall floodwaters. Every photo-book, memory box, and sentimental item were washed away with the mighty wrath of Texas's natural disasters.

After the main portion of the storming had ceased, my family received more help than they could ever ask for. People we didn't even know were coming to my home, clearing out the walls and carpet, and moving out all our soggy and ruined pieces of our home. Because of this kindness that we experienced, we try to repay that favor to others when similar disasters occur.

As I am sure is well known by now, Hurricane Florence has devastated the Carolinas. This news hit my family and our mental well-being hard. Watching the news with our eyes wide, we watched the footage of flooded streets and refugees, people who we had once been. My mom and I were convinced we had to do something to help the people who were suffering the same as our family had once endured. First, we needed to find a centralized area that we could send our help to. Because I attend a Christian School (Humble Christian School), we looked for another Christian school that may have been impacted. We found Wilmington Christian Academy in North Carolina. Their school had suffered severe damage and many of the student's homes had also been destroyed.

We decided to make this a fundraiser that my volleyball team would head-up. We got in touch with Thrivent, which would help us aid the project financially, and then we began to design shirts. Once we got the final idea, with the help of our school art teacher, we began to sell the t-shirts for fifteen dollars each. The volleyball team, with my mom and I heading up the project, met with each of the homeroom classes in the mornings to encourage students to either donate money to our fundraiser or purchase a t-shirt for the aid of Wilmington Christian Academy's coming help.

A moment that I will never forget is coming home from school and meeting my mother, teary eyed in the kitchen, showing me her phone. On her phone was an email from Wilmington Christian's administration, thanking her and my team for giving them the money that they need to resume the classes and for their students to get back in their classes. It was a great moment to know that my team and my mom and I were able to successfully repay the help and overwhelming amounts of kindness that we were shown in our traumatic times of need to people who now needed the help at that time more than ever.

I learned through this that if there is an issue or event like this that affects the lives of so many, there is always a way to reach out and send your help, even if it is not within physical reach. I know from a first-person perspective that the help is so appreciated that 'thank yo' does not feel like it even begins to cover it.

Submitted by: Sophie Karshner - Humble Christian School

Last fall, my band director made an announcement that changed my life: the principal had given approval for my band to go on a trip to Florida to perform in Walt Disney World. This came as a great honor, but also brought on a huge task. I would now have to raise over seven hundred dollars in just a few months, because the trip was scheduled for early spring of the same year. And being the first chair clarinet of my band, as well as the section leader of the woodwinds, I knew that it was my responsibility to the group to make sure I could go and carry out the duty of those leadership positions.

So for not just my own sake but for the sake of my beloved band, I did everything that I could in the next few months to raise the funds. I spent days washing cars in the freezing cold October wind. This also involved waving signs to passing cars and doing anything I could think of to make them stop to support my trip. On many occasions I sold countless subs and sandwiches to family and friends. However, the main way that I earned this money was by getting a job and working up to forty hours a week in order to raise the large sum. This was a long process, and I remember all of the time I would spend after I received the week's earnings, sitting on my bedroom floor, counting each dollar. Once I got the new total, I would add the number to the sticky note I kept in my yellow cabinet, and hide the money again until the next week. I kept adding up those totals on that sticky note, week after week, becoming increasingly excited to see my hard work pay off, knowing that I was going to be able to go on this trip and be a team player in my band because I had chosen to.To make a way for myself, and that it would happen for no other reason than the fact that I made a commitment to take the initiative to do it.

During this time, I worked for a local small business, a farm market that provides fresh fruit and vegetables for the community, and pick-your-own experiences for families and groups. While it was and is a great privilege to work there, have a job and make money, there were days when it was hard. The market has a big sliding door that stays wide open while we are working, and in the fall, the wind blows right in. When you work for hours in this environment, it begins to become very cold and uncomfortable, but I still requested as many hours as I could get, for I was certainly determined to make the money for my trip.

One day, after countless hours of work in the market, washing cars, and selling food, I sat on my bedroom floor and triumphantly waved the money in the air like a trophy, and joyfully circled the final total on the beaten up sticky note. I was overwhelmed with excitement upon turning in my hard earned money to the director in exchange for the glorious confirmation email, saying that I was set to go on the 2018 Disney Band Performance trip.

It turned out to be one of the best trips of my life, as I got to learn from Disney workshops with my band, and perform in the middle of Magic Kingdom! All of my fundraising to single-handedly earn over seven hundred dollars taught me that hard work is more valuable that anything that money can buy. It showed me that I am stronger than I think, and my determination can accomplish hard tasks. Because of this experience I will be forever encouraged and empowered to work for my dreams and stop at nothing to achieve my goals.

Submitted by: Grace Anne Shaw - Kennard-Dale High School

The fundraiser that I'm so proud of being a part of happened on June 16th 2018. The first annual Bald Eagle car show in Oconomowoc WI. This fundraiser was in honor of my uncle Rich who was killed in a motor cycle accident in October 2017. It is still a fresh wound that he is gone, and many of us are still trying to cope with it. Rich was an unbelievable man who worked so hard to be the best person he could be, and encourage others to do the same. He gave a lot of his time to volunteer. To mention a few, he worked with in his church, he lead several youth mission groups, and he worked with habitat of humanity very closely. In the tragic accident that took him to soon, he hit a deer on his motorcycle and was ran over by two other vehicles. This devastation had spread through hundreds of people, and we together wanted to do something to carry on his traditions of giving back. We thought what better way to do this than raise money for the youth mission groups of his church to continue going to help places in need.

Throughout the car show many emotional experiences happened. One example of this is when my aunt, who is left behind from my uncle's death made a speech. She stated how proud she was to see everyone here, and how Rich was with us through the whole day. We all knew how proud we were making him up in heaven. She thanked the strangers who came out to support this, and assured them the great cause they were donating too. A major accomplishment that was made was that nearly $10,000 was made in just five short hours. This was so shocking to hear, and just goes to show how amazing of a man my uncle was that all these people came and spent money toward such a great cause to honor him. So far, the money that was raised has been used for a youth mission trip to Texas to help with the hurricane disaster. Although I was not able to attend, I heard all about the trip. During the trip, houses were repaired, and new memories were made all while trying to keep my uncle Rich's traditions alive. An emotional time on this trip was when everyone shared stories and memories of previous trips with Rich present. The people of the small town in Texas were so grateful for the help from the youth.

Through this whole thing, I have learned many life lessons. I have learned it's important to live each day to the fullest, as no day is promised and the good are always the first to go. I have learned that people can be so generous for a good cause, and this is such a breath of fresh air living in the crazy world we do. I have learned that there is no good way to deal with the grief of a loss, but being surrounded by family and friends and all the support their willing to give makes it much more manageable.

I'm thankful for this opportunity to write to you, and I hope you can understand my happiness this fundraiser has brought to change my life. We will continue to do this annually, and keep pushing to reach higher goals.

Submitted by: Jenna Garski - Cardnial Stritch University

In high school, I started a club with my friends that was a rescue team for the non-profit Liberty in North Korea (LiNK). This organization works to rescue and resettle North Korean refugees who have escaped to China into a new and better life. As a rescue team, we tried our best to 'change the narrative' about the North Korean people and raise funds to help the organization's cause.

One year as a fundraiser we decided to hold a Super Smash Brothers tournament after school. We asked businesses around town for donations and were given some amazing prizes, highly discounted pizzas, and a lot of support from local businesses. Over the course of a few months we got everything ready, including getting permission from the school and selling tickets during the lunch hour over the course of a week. As the day came I was nervous and excited, and a little frazzled. I knew that I could only control so much, and that I had to trust my peers in order for the event to succeed.

Throughout the tournament, I did my best to solve problems as they arose and make sure all of the volunteers and participants were comfortable. In addition to ticket sales, which included participation in the tournament and some free pizza and a drink, we sold additional food items during the tournament. This included extra slices of pizza and homemade spiced and chocolate dipped pretzels from one of my friends start-up businesses, and she donated most of the proceeds to us for allowing her to gain some new customers in the school.

Looking back, I am honestly amazed at how much we were able to do while still in high-school. The most memorable part of the fundraiser was when we finally learned how much we had made, a little over $1,000 to donate to LiNK. I was honestly shocked, and filled with so much joy that all of our hard work had paid off, as $1,000 is about a third of the total amount needed to fully resettle one refugee. To think that my friends and I were able to have made that kind of difference in someone's life almost brought me to tears of joy at the time.

The club continued to re-host this fundraiser after I graduated as well, although I am not sure what their outcome and processes were. Today I struggle knowing that when a group of people is brought together they can make that kind of impact, and that I still have the creativity and drive to continue this kind of work. I feel like while in college I have fallen away from this passion, focusing my free time on just working in order to pay for college and living. However, I know that this passion is still there, and my end goal is to work for LiNK, as I am currently pursuing Social Work and Korean language, so that in the future I can help put other young students' fundraising efforts to use helping the North Korean people.

Submitted by: Rebecca Reutzel - University of Kansas

My high school experience was filled with community service and fundraisers. The most memorable fundraiser that I participated in was called Bee Pink. I originally went to the creator of the fundraiser and simply asked what I could do to help with the project. However, she replied with telling me that she had so much stuff going on that she wouldn't mind giving the entire fundraiser to my boyfriend and I to run. We were so excited and began planning right away!

Some background knowledge on Bee Pink is that it is an annual fundraiser at my school in the month of October to raise money and awareness for breast cancer. The entire community gets involved. We sell t-shirts every day leading up to bee pink Friday and we even dedicate a football game for it. Plus our boys wear bright pink uniforms, which is always a hoot for the players. They're even allowed to wear pink gear and socks. One year a band player brought a pink trombone for the halftime performance!

This event is one of the most popular events at our community high school. My boyfriend and I began with picking the shirt design and finding volunteers to help sell shirts during conferences, lunch hour, and even at the game. We announced to the school that on bee pink Friday we would be choosing winners that were dressed with the most pink to win some prizes. We even planned a school photo to capture the memory.

We tried our hardest to get local businesses to donate, but this was probably the hardest part of the fundraiser. Thankfully the creator of the fundraiser helped out and took care of the local business donations. The day of the fundraiser was extremely fun! Every class I attended almost every student was dressed in pink and everyone was talking not only about the big game, but about spreading breast cancer awareness!

Just shortly after the gates were opened the parking lot was packed and the stands had reached their capacity. Once you left the game, you couldn't enter back in because of the amount of people that were inside. The middle of the game two students and myself popped pink confetti poppers and we smiled for the camera.

At the end of the day we didn't just have fun. If I remember correctly in total of all the fundraising $5,000-$7,000 was raised! While most of the planning was still done by the creator, it still felt awesome to help with such a meaningful fundraiser. I also learned just how much preparation goes in to planning a fundraiser and learned a lot of school rules that I didn't know existed at my school. For example, giant pink balloons are not allowed during football games. This fundraiser truly makes an impact on the public and the students. Everyone knows the cause and I think that's why it's one of our most popular events. I even met with come community members who were survivors! Even though I graduated this year, I'll still be attending every bee pink game in the future.

Submitted by: Samantha Hendricks - Carthage College

About two years ago, I participated in Relay for Life. My group had a goal of everyone to raise at least one hundred dollars towards this cause. I set up a fundraiser that boosted morale while raised money toward a great cause. It was a pie in the face contest. For every dollar an airman donated toward the cause, they had one vote toward pieing a Military Training Leader in the face. Some airmen gave as little as one dollar, and some donated as large as twenty dollars. Once the event came around, the top five airmen who donated the most amount of money had the opportunity to pie one of the top five Military Training Leaders. This event gave airmen the chance to let off some steam toward our top leadership, without getting in trouble. It also helped me raise close to five hundred dollars toward Relay for Life; over five times the amount I was expected to. That money went toward cancer research.

This fundraiser was vital to me because my mom had thyroid cancer, and my Colonel from my JROTC program had lung cancer. Unfortunately, only one of them won the fight thanks to the incredible advances in medicine. However, due to Colonel's death, I know that advancements can go farther. I'm hoping that that money I raised help find a better cure instead of literal radiation. I hope one day there is a cure for cancer and not just treatment and surgeries that may or may not work.

At this event, I walked laps for twenty-four hours. Each lap had a game or a theme, which I had the joy to participate. The first lap was a survivor's walk, and I cried tears of joy. Seeing the survivors of this horrendous disease brought so much hope to my life. There was an opportunity to create luminaria lamps, and I made one in honor of Colonel. He didn't die from this disease until a couple of months after this event, but I sadly knew he was losing the good fight. One of the first laps at night was the luminaria lap. As we walked around in silence, holding candles in our hands, one of the representatives for the event read off names of those who were currently fighting or died trying. I cried the whole lap; my friends held me as I wept and helped me pull myself together. At that moment, I was so overwhelmed by the amount of support I received through my friends at the event, but also through the airmen who chose to donate.

I still give to the Relay for Life organization to this day. However I haven't had the chance to participate in one since the one two years ago. I will continue to fight for those too weak to. I will continue to persue a cure for this ugly disease. I loved Colonel more than I loved some of my family, it pains me that he found out he had cancer right when he retired. It hurts me that he didn't get to live through that retirement. I remember him telling me all the plans he had once he graduated with us, the class of 2015. I will fight so that everyone will live to see their retirement.

Submitted by: Kaitlyn Batterton - Arizona State University

In 2016 my dance team, United Dance, was invited to Talent on Parade Nationals competition in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. This was one of the biggest, most important competition of the year, because it was the first year we got to to Oklahoma and compete. To go there my dance coach thought it was a smart idea to start a fundraiser through "Butter Braid" to help with the expense. This organization involved selling cookie dough, bread pastries and pastry rolls. Starting off with the fundraiser I was scared I wasn't going to raise enough because it was very slow due to so many kids selling cookie dough in school for a cheaper price. Due to this competition I focused more on just the pastries because nobody was selling that and it was something different for people to try. There was 9 different flavors and many people liked the idea of something new and different to try that's not store bought.

To help me get the word out about the sell I had my uncle post about it on his Facebook page with a picture of my dance team to let people know how important it was to all of us. With him doing this it brought in a lot of business and I earned $300 dollars just from the Facebook followers. My goal was to earn $725 to pay for the entry fees of the dances and my costumes. After going door to door and to family member I end up earning $400 more dollars. Going into this competition I was competing with 1 solo, 1 duet, and 2 group dances. All those dances and costumes were very expensive and I didn't want my mom to pay for them all on her own so I tried my hardest to earn enough money so she won't have to come out of pocket. This was a great outcome for my mom and I because at the end of the fundraiser we only hand to pay $25 dollars out of pocket.

With this fundraiser opportunity I was able to go to my nationals competition and place 6th place overall in my jazz solo against 53 people and 1st overall in my hip hop duet against 46 duets. This was a dream come true to be able to travel that far and compete, since I only have done nationals in my hometown. As a dancer traveling to compete is the best part because you get to not only compete and meet new people and learn but you also get to go on a mini vacation. Traveling to new competitions like this is a great opportunity that you can't pass up, so when my coach told us about the fundraiser I was very grateful for it. Dance costumes alone are about $400 by it self so I was very appreciative that I had that many people that could help me raise that much money to assist me with my dance career and help me go to nationals.

Submitted by: Deannah Herron - Avila University

Three years ago I participated in the One Goal for KC soccer tournament fundraiser. This organization was created by a couple of my friends who were determined to raise money which would go towards suicide awareness and prevention. They decided on this because it was a topic that really hit home with my friend group. Just the year before we lost two of our friends, Cady and Ciara, to suicide. An experience that no 16 year old should ever have to face. My participation in this fundraiser was rather on the fun side since I got to compete in the tournament on one of the teams with some of my friends. However I could only imagine what an enormous amount of time and effort must have gone into the organizing this event. And even beyond that, having the faith and hope that people would actually show up had to have been a difficult task. Whenever I would try and put myself in that position I would always think to myself, why would anyone show up to support a bunch of teenagers? It was almost as if I was telling myself that only people who were affected by the cause would support the cause. On the night of the tournament, to my great surprise, I walked into a building full of people. I was so overwhelmed it brought tears to my eyes. To think about how all of these people standing around me had taken time out of their day to support a cause that meant so much to my friends and I. And most of them I had never even met before.

That night I learned a very valuable life lesson that there are so many people are out there willing to stand in the name of good. Even those who are not directly affected by a cause still care about others and making this world a better place. There were so many moments in the months that followed my friends passing where I felt so alone. I felt as if no one understood what I was going through and so therefore they did not care. But that night I was shown how evidently wrong I was to think such a thing. Not only did these all these wonderful people care about 'us teenagers' but they wanted to find an end to this problem just as much as we did. And to think how my friends who started this fundraiser were able to pull good out of such a tragedy was inspirational to me beyond measures.

After the first year they continued an annual One Goal for KC tournament and we are currently working on planning our 4th year! I am proud to say that I have finally stepped up and joined the committee in charge of organization and planning. Which may have turned out to be more stressful than playing in the tournament, but is also rewarding in the grand scheme of things.

Submitted by: Abigail Conner - Avila University

My name is Aubree Miller and I am from White House, Tennessee. I have played soccer throughout my life and it has inspired me to become a coach and be a Physical Therapy Assistant after I graduate. Over the past two summers I have had the opportunity to Coach at the Austin Peay University Kelley Guth soccer camps. This has allowed me to teach different age groups of kids. I have worked with many other College coaches throughout these camps which has allowed me to see the different ways of coaching and learn different drills. I plan to continue helping coach and be a part of this program. I am a Junior in college and will be graduating in 2019. Over the past years a lot of my friends have been injured and watching them go through physical therapy has helped me know what I wanted to become. I took one of my friends to physical therapy twice and watching her overcome her injury has inspired me to learn more about injuries.

I hope one day to become a coach and be a Physical Therapy Assistant. My goal is to get hours in the Physical Therapy office and observe their teaching and skills. After I graduate with my Health and Physical Education degree I have to continue to go to schooling for another two years to become a Physical Therapy Assistant. My top three schools after graduating is Western Kentucky University, Middle Tennessee University and East Tennessee State University. I am a part of the Oakland City University Women's soccer team, and I am passionate about the sport. Like I said earlier, I want to be coach soccer when I graduate and I feel that being apart of the team helps me understand what type of coach I want to be. I have had some really great coaches, and some coaches who showed me what I do not want to be like, and I strive to be the best coach I can be. I plan to coach a younger age group at first and then pursue to coaching a older age group. Coaching travel age groups i would have to receive a license. The levels of license are F,E,D,C,B,A and they all have a different level you are allowed to coach and this includes pro once you receive your A license. Taking the classes will help me learn more about the fundamental and rules of soccer. Therefore i will have more knowledge in the sport of soccer.

Helping kids over the years has helped me grow in communication, dealing with different problems and organization. This will help me throughout my life if it's coaching or physical therapy assistant. You have to deal with different people coaching and being a Physical Therapist Assistant. If i am working with kids i will have to understand there is different levels of soccer and i will have to adjust my drills and adapt to their skill level. If i am doing physical therapy and helping kids and adults everyone has a different pain. Therefore, i will have to help them push themselves through the workouts applied to their injury. I am excited for the future and hope to achieve all of my goals to get my future Job.

Throughout all these experiences i have had to do a lot of fundraising for my teams and school. I took marketing classes that helped me learn the importance of fundraising. I did a fundraiser to help my college soccer team at Oakland City University. We sold candles and tshirts over the last 3 years. Fundraising is a great way to help a team and school.

Submitted by: Aubree Miller - Oakland City University

My name is Kylee Miller, and I am a Senior at Oakland city University. I am from White House, Tennessee. I am a student athlete and play soccer at Oakland City University. My major is health and physical Education and a minor in Business. After my 4 years at Oakland City, I plan on going to another college to get my physical therapy assistant license. I have always wanted to do something in the medical field and I thinking being a PTA would be the best fit for me. Being a health and physical education major has really inspired me to further my education. I want to go further into school and study PTA. I think PTA will be just for me because I love to help other people and helping them with their needs. My grandma has Parkinson's disease and I have always wanted to find what kind of exercises that would help her stop shaking. This is one of the reasons I want to further my education in studying PTA. I think that she has inspired me to further my education and hopefully pursue that dream. Being a PTA will be a very rewarding job because I will be able to see someone that Is struggling at first. Then I will be able to work with these people for a period of time and watch their improvements. The most rewarding part, I think, about this job will be seeing the end result in helping my patients. Seeing them strong and come such a long way in doing these exercises.

At oakland city university, I am a student athlete. I play soccer and have played soccer my whole life. I have played since I was four and now play at the collegiate level. When playing soccer my whole life, I really didn't think about how it would help my future but it did. Throughout high school, I always thought I would play in college but didn't know if I was good enough. I played on a travel team, where I got seen by different colleges. At that point I knew being a college athlete was for me. I got a lot of offers but Oakland City University was the right fit for me. They offered me the most money and it was a reasonable distance from home. Playing soccer in college has not only helped me grow as a person but helped me make lifelong friends. Being a college athlete teaches you many things such as management, people and communication skills. It not only teaches you these skills but helps me academically. It keeps you motivated to go to class and do good in school. It helps you be consistent because if you are not then you do not get to play and you will not be eligible. I have played for 3 years at Oakland City University and playing my 4th year right now. All these things I have talked about is the wonderful things that Oakland City University has brought to me...skill, independence and education.

A personal fundraising story I have is I had to fundraise with my college soccer team I am on. We all got together to come up with ideas on how we were going to fundraise. We came up with a few, candles, selling baked goods and having a volleyball tournament at the school. We reviewed all of our ideas and thought the best idea wascandles. We thought this was the best idea because it would benefit everyone of all ages. We could sell to our colleagues and professors as well as our families. The fundraiser went really well and we were able to play in a tournament due to this fundraiser.

Submitted by: Kylee Miller - Oakland City University

As a Boy Scout I worked with the homeless, cleaned up California beaches, and took part in many other community events. But my Eagle Project had the most significant impact, both on me and my community. The project was to build a learning space for the Friendship Circle organization, which provides special needs kids with a place to have fun and build relationships.

I had to raise $2000 dollars, to paint a room, organize, label and box all miscellaneous equipment in the room, and build 2 overhead storage units and 2 shelving units. This project took lots of hard work and dedication, and required the help of over 25 scouts to complete. My Eagle Project provided a welcoming space where these special needs kids could have fun and have personal experiences they would not be able to get elsewhere.

I visited the site of my project soon after I had completed it. It felt so amazing to see Friendship Circle instructors, and teachers marveling at how the space had been transformed. The organizational features that were added meant a lot to them and their reactions gave me the satisfaction of knowing that I had made a difference.

Submitted by: River Benyair - Mira Costa High

Every fall going all the way back to my kindergarten year of education my family and I have sold 'World's Finest Chocolate' candy bars for my school's annual fundraiser. During 4-5 weeks of selling we would sell approximately 50-100 cases of candy bars which added up to $3000-$6000 for my school Fellowship Baptist Academy.

We would accomplish this feat by visiting tailgaters at the local college football games each Saturday. We would always say "would you like to buy a delicious candy bar for only $1". That got them every time.

Submitted by: Courtney Matthews - Fellowship Baptist Academy

When I was in fourth grade, I decided to have a bake sale and raise money to send my teacher to Haiti for a mission trip. My teacher always talked about how she wanted to meet this one boy that her church sponsored in Haiti and go to Haiti for a mission trip.

I stood outside of drug stores everyday and posted on my moms Facebook that I was selling baked goods so that I could pay for my teachers mission trip. I ended up raising $516 and gave it all to her so she could go to Haiti.

She was so excited that she was able to go and meet 'her boy'. She came back after a week and told us all about it! That's the story of how my fundraiser benefited me.

Submitted by: Carley Drew - Allatoona High School

My name is Ashley Gilliford and I play the flute in my high school's marching and concert bands. Every year we participate in a mattress sale fundraiser that raises money for our band as a whole as well as individual students in the band. The mattress fundraiser organization sets up a floor show in our school's gym that is visually similar to professional mattress and furniture stores you would normally visit to buy a mattress.

Band students help out the fundraiser by handing out flyers, showing people around the floor show, or playing in the small pep bands we form on the corners of big streets by our school to promote the sale. Most of the money we receive from the fundraiser goes to the band, but part of the money we raise goes to students personal accounts that we can use for band trips.

This fundraiser helped me earn money to go on my band's Florida trip, which was during spring break of my sophomore year. On this trip, we traveled for over twenty four hours to Florida on four charter buses. We stopped first at Clearwater Beach for a day, and then spent the rest of the trip exploring Disney World and Universal Studios in Orlando. Our band had the opportunity to perform fun Disney themed concert music for visitors in one of Disney World's nearby resorts. We also got to work with music directors who work to create soundtracks for Disney movies, and even record our own track for a scene from The Lion King.

This trip is one of my favorite memories in high school. It provided multiple new experiences for me, such as seeing the ocean for the first time, going to Disney World for the first time, and sleeping on a bus for the first time. I will always remember waking up with everyone on the bus and realizing we were finally in Florida. The mood of the bus instantly went from sleepy indifference to surprised excitement. The ocean was beautiful and the sand on the beach was so soft and white. Disney World and Universal Studios was so much fun. Disney World provided a fun experience reminiscent of my childhood. Universal Studios provided more of a thrill as there were larger and more intense rides as compared to the ones in Disney. Harry Potter World was an extra special place that we were able to experience in Universal Studios.

This trip created and strengthened my relationships with so many people who also went on the trip. I made new friends and became closer to those I was already friends with. Without the mattress sale fundraiser, our band would not have been able to go on this trip and I never would have had this amazing experience. Although some may laugh at the idea of a fundraiser selling mattresses, our band has been quite successful in sales of mattresses every year we have done this fundraiser, and without it our band would not have as many opportunities as it does for students.

I will forever be grateful to the mattress sale fundraiser for helping me to go on this trip that is one of the best and most memorable experiences I have had in high school.

Submitted by: Ashley Gilliford - Shawnee Mission South

A fundraiser I participated in was for my fire department. I am a licensed EMT in Maine, and volunteer as an EMT at the local volunteer fire department. The fundraiser was held at a local restaurant on the coast of Maine, and all the tips and donations from that night went to the fire department.

My job was to clean tables, serve food, and refill beverages, as well as staying around to clean up after the restaurant closed. It was wonderful to see all the volunteer EMTs and Firefighters helping out the restaurant staff, and it was especially good to see how many people gave to us. We raised $2,500 that night, and I am very proud of that. That is a lot of money for only about 5 or 6 hours of fundraising.

We have used this money to buy specialized equipment, and more supplies for our firehouse and ambulances. I am honored to volunteer in my community, and I try to help in any way possible. I am now looking forward to next time, and I plan to organize more fundraisers for our department, and the nearby children's hospital. I would ask that all people who are able support their local fire department in any way they can. These people do us a great service, and we should be thankful for the time and energy they put in to serving the community.

Submitted by: Will Martin - Homeschooled

Surprisingly, the fundraiser that I remember the fondest isn't the one where I raised the most money. In fact, during my most significant fundraiser I sat with my fellow College Diabetes Network members in the freezing cold and we tried to sell baked goods to drunk college kids. We literally raised less than $50. So why does this fundraiser mean so much to me? Well, this was the first fundraiser that our school's chapter of College Diabetes Network had put on in years. I felt pride in being part of the revival of an organization that means so much to me because it has the ability to do so much good for college aged type 1 diabetics. For example, my freshman year my campus chapter of College Diabetes Network was nonexistent.

Being a freshman on a college campus is hard enough without having type 1 diabetes and I wish that during that time I could have had a chapter of College Diabetes Network to lean on for support. That's why the summer before my sophomore year I was happy to accept an executive position on my campus chapter of College Diabetes Network. I knew from first hand experience the importance of this organization for young type 1 diabetics to feel supported at college.

Fast forward about two months into my sophomore year. Our organization had canvassed the campus for type 1 diabetics and it had grown from four to about ten members. This fundraiser was the first real test of our organization's strength and unity. If I graded our fundraiser on the traditional goal of a fundraiser, to raise a large amount of money to obtain a goal, we would have received a D because I am disappointed to report that the $50 we raised did not cure type 1 diabetes. But, I am going to give our fundraiser an A based off of other criteria. My criteria includes, ability to form bonds with team members, ability to persevere and remain positive in the face of adverse conditions, and ability to grow stronger as an organization.

I learned that measures of success are subjective. To some our fundraiser would be classified as a failure but to me our fundraiser was a success. That fundraiser proved that our chapter of College Diabetes Network was here to stay on Miami University's campus. We weren't going to give up and let our organization fade away because of one 'bad' fundraiser as it had done in the past. If our organization could grow even after this traditionally unsuccessful fundraiser then we could continue to grow through real tough circumstances.

I am also happy to say that during that night I forged some of my favorite college friendships. When you sit in the freezing cold for hours trying to sell cookies to drunk kids you get pretty close with the people out there with you. This fundraiser was the first step in growing Miami University's chapter of College Diabetes Network into what it is today. In just one short year after this fundraiser our organization has doubled in size. I felt pure fulfillment this year when I passed my executive position onto someone, who just a year earlier, I met while sitting in the freezing during our fundraiser.

I truly believe that without this fundraiser our group would not have grow into the impactful organization that it is today. I feel a sense of achievement in watching our members develop and watching our organization continue to offer a safe and supportive place for other type 1 diabetics.

Submitted by: Sara Carnahan - Miami University

I am a mother, wife, and a volunteer for Boy Scouts of America. Both my boys have been in Scouting since they were Cub Scouts they are now working their way to being an Eagle Scout with the Boy Scouts. As you are probably aware, Scouts do fundraising for everything they need to do for the boys; from camping to going to events.

This particular fundraiser our boys wanted to go horseback riding. Some boys have never gone and we as leaders thought it would be a great event for the boys. We had the leaders (parents) talk to the boys how we were going to accomplish this goal. The boys decided on two fundraisers; the first one was a popcorn fundraiser, which we do annually. The second one was selling flower bulbs. The popcorn fundraiser was hard work for the boys. We stood in front of stores trying to sell our pre-bought popcorn and taking orders. At times, the days were rainy and we did not do well and sometime it was cold outside. The younger boys felt defeated on those days. We encouraged them to keep up the great work and about doing their best! That is what Cub Scouts is all about.

It was amazing when people would buy the popcorn from the youngsters there face would light up. They would come running to a grown-up with the money yelling they bought a box! We had to teach them did you thank the person who bought the box, the person would normally smile and chuckle to us or even give us a friendly wave. The second fundraiser was a little more challenging for the young boys because they were from an order form. But our boys were troopers, they put on their class A uniforms and did there chant for their den in front of the stores to stir up some business.

Our boys were successful in both of the fundraising they have chosen. The trip for horseback riding was on. Not only did they raise enough money to do the horseback riding we had a surplus where we were able to go camping on the trip too! The boys were so surprise when we told them! The hooting and hollering, don't forget these are boys so it was a lot of that and running around for joy! Cub Scouts love to go camping especially we made the arrangement to do it at the horse riding camp.

So the big day arrived and we first set up our tents for camp, and settled in the first night. We made a huge campfire; we told stories, sung songs and made s'mores and ate the marshmallows off the sticks. The next day we rode the horses, the boys loved it.

The smiles on their little faces were priceless. Some complained there bottoms were hurting but when we asked them would they do it again the majority of them said yes. They wanted to go back on the horses. Not only did they ride the horses they learned about horses. They all took turns how to brush them, how to size them with your hand, parts of a horse. They even learned how horses have different personalities. When all was said and done the boys sent thank you notes to the Horse Camp and wrote something about what they learned. The boys also earned a horseback riding pin that we bought them so they can always remember that day thanks to fundraising!

Submitted by: Victoria Brush - Suny Empire

Anyone who walks through the gates of Special Spirit, the equine therapy center where I volunteer, can sense that the place is filled with love. Any physical or mental disabilities that exist in our clients seem to dissolve once we bring out the horses. Horses are extremely empathetic animals, and they reflect the feeling humans project into them. The movement the horse causes in a rider's body helps the rider feel safe and seen. The clients who come to Special Spirit often feel misunderstood because of their disabilities, but a horse doesn't see these differences. The impact can be life-changing, and I knew I needed to do more to help.

After contacting numerous pet supply companies, I founded Charity Horse, a non-profit where I sell horse and pet goods with all proceeds going straight to Special Spirit. Special Spirit was donated countless pairs of riding boots, but within five hours during the grand opening of my partnership with a nearby tack shop, I was able to sell half of them and give Special Spirit a donation that was more useful. It felt great to be able to give to an organization that helps disabled people in a concrete way. This is just one example of a way I have recognized that someone is in need and used the powers at my disposal to help in whatever way I can.

I have been the 'mom friend' in every social group I've ever been in. This can mean that I'm the most prepared for an emergency, that I'm the one people come talk to when problems arise, or that I simply give the best hugs. As team captain, I grew my school's equestrian team from a loosely associated collection of riders from different barns who would meet for the first time at competitions, to a community of spirited teammates who all know and support each other. Whether I am deciding rider placement as secretary of my barn's equestrian team, arranging team events as captain of Science Olympiad, or costuming entire productions as my school's student costumer, what I like best about leadership roles is bringing out the best in my peers so that they can feel included, enjoy their experiences, and help the rest of the team, all at the same time.

I want to give shy individuals and marginalized groups a voice. I have been nurtured by my school's Gender-Sexuality Alliance, where I felt comfortable coming out as bisexual. Many peers do not have the luxury of a comfortable coming out story, and it's my mission to lead people around me into a state of acceptance and safety. Of course, animals count as a marginalized group to me, since they have no voice. Every horse I have ridden has reacted differently to me, and I approach each one as I would a human with the knowledge that no two animals will ever be the same. Compassion shapes the way I view the world around me, and impact that world.

Submitted by: Lily Andersson - Viewpoint School

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