I am including a link www.abilitycamp.com/Brandon-flyer.pdf to a flyer we made that directed people on how to donate, Brian posted it on his bulletin board at school and we had some friends who took it around their neighborhood. We also set up a "youcaring.com" page, which after lots of research, was the most beneficial in that they didn't take a big percentage, the only fee that was paid was paypal fees. We also have a trust set up for Brandon, which I understand was a big factor in people donating because they knew for sure the money was going towards Brandon by writing their check out to his trust. In the US, if your child is receiving Medicaid they can never have more than $1000 in their name because then they no longer qualify for Medicaid. However, they can have a Supplemental Needs Trust (SNT) where money can be put in for them with a trustee managing it (Brian and myself are the trustees) and they don't lose their Medicaid. We did an SNT for Brandon and the donations went straight to that through an account at Wells Fargo. We also did a plate sale through a group of ladies at a local church. When one of them heard about Brandon through a friend, she said the church has a group of ladies who will donate food and cook, and we sold the plates. We had about $13,000 donated off the flyer, $5500 to youcaring.com, and $1500 off the plate sale. Donations from the flyer were mostly from Brian's work, my immediate group of coworkers, and our church. The youcaring.com page was up for 5 weeks, but the majority of our fundraising was done in 3 weeks. Brandon's school was also willing to do a fundraiser, but we received so much in a short time that I asked them to reserve fundraising for future camps. They did buy plates from our plate sale.
We are going to have another fundraiser in the fall, we have a few friends who have bands and they are going to do a concert for Brandon. We will sell tickets to the concert and have a raffle with items that we are collecting through donations.
For 2 years I organized bottle drives. Pulled in family, friends and also high school kids that needed to have their community hours to graduate. Set up teams and vehicles. Had maps laminated and sections marked off for each team.
Going door to door we asked for empty beer, wine and cooler bottles. If they did not have that, they were asked to make a donation to Tyler's fund.. I made 2 thousand one year and 3 the next.
I threw in a BBq at my house afterwards to thanks all of our helpers...
Also made a huge yard sale. Being a small community and having one news paper I wrote Tyler's story and sent it in asking for donations and help to his cause. I started two months ahead and people donated everything they could. We had so much stuff that it was held a second weekend. That made 4 thousand.
People still call me to donated their empties.
Tyler is a celebrity here and people love to meet him and spend time with him.
With all our hard work and dedication Lions club contacted me to hold a pancake breakfast for Tyler since we deserved it. They seen how hard we worked without asking for help and decided that they would throw one together.. that was a success..
All I can say is get your story out for recognition. You can't sit back and expect the help. Can't sit back and wait for hand outs.. Its extra work yes. But all worth the extra mile.
We went to a local Elks Lodge and asked them if we could hold a fundraiser there. I know there are lodges that will put everything together for you and completely run it, but I hate relinquishing control and prefer to do it myself. They do hold the appropiate licenses required in our state to have a gift auction, which is where I got the most money. We live in an area where our towns are small, have a Main Street, and we like to walk everywhere. So I went with Alex from town to town around here, walking their Main Streets and asking if they may be able to donate anything for a gift auction to afford his therapy. People were incredibly generous, and it is hard when they are looking at him to say no. I also had posters made up for him, as well as fliers to post for people to come to our event. If I felt intimidated asking for a donation, then I would ask them if I may put up a flier for our fundraiser for Alex. Nine times out of ten they would say yes and then ask if there was any way they could help or if they could donate something. I also asked Max's school if they could put fliers in the teacher's lounge, we went to the town library to hang them there, at the post offices, and I called the reporter from the local newspaper to do a story on Alex and promote the fundraiser for him. We had alot of success, I could not have been happier.
We usually do a pizza que through a local Pizza resturant that has stores nationwide. If we sell 2000 tickets we get $10,000 of our money. And we use that to invest in a large Gospel concert for which we get local and regional gospel artiste to perform for free or at a minimal cost(this was really successful the last time we came and was able to fund most of our trip). And this year I am thinking about doing a fashion show as well with local designers. Its all gonna take lots of work.
Many Service Clubs and Churches have also assisted families. Families from the U.S. have had some success in getting their Insurance company cover these costs as well as groups such as Mamsi in the Southern States.
In Canada a truly wonderful organization Presidents Choice Childrens Charity has been able to help sponsor many families.