Money can be a stumbling block when you are preparing to spend a semester volunteering abroad. Don't let it stop you though! Most of our volunteers are able to fundraise and make money to put towards their program fee. Even if you make a few hundred dollars through fundraising, that's a few hundred dollars you no longer have to worry about! Put the work into it and fundraising can be super beneficial!
Check out what Zoe A. (who volunteered in China and Thailand with ILP) did to fundraise and earn money! This one event helped her a ton and made it more possible for her to spend a semester in Thailand.
Throw A Party
Okay, so basically Zoe just threw a party! She had the idea to have a little get together with friends, have some party "supplies" donated and charge admission.
The type of party you throw can be up to you! Maybe you want to have a board game night? You could do a movie night and invite the neighborhood? Whatever you decide, here a few tips that helped Zoe out.
- Get things donated!
Get as much donated as possible. That means you get to pocket more money and put it towards your program fee. If you are wanting to have food, ask local restaurants if they'd be willing to donate food and drinks. If you end up doing an outdoor movie see if grocery stores could donate popcorn, or ask around and see if you can borrow a projector. Use your resources and ask around for donations!
Zoe said "I went to pizza shops around town, told them about volunteering with ILP and what I was going to do to make a difference. I was surprised with how many people were willing to donate. I got more than enough pizza and drinks donated for everyone who came!"
- Charge Admission
This may seem weird to ask your friends, neighbors, and family to pay an admission but this is going to be how you actually raise money and keep in mind that they want to support you anyways, you're just giving them a fun experience back. Charge a few bucks or $20! - whatever you feel like is reasonable for the event. They get food and fun and you get a couple more bucks! Zoe asked each friend to bring $5 and also had a jar for added donations in case anyone was able to.
You can choose the price, just make sure if you do end up buying anything on your own, that the admission price will cover that.
- Have people invite friends
Have your friends invite other people! Get the word out there! Zoe said "Having people invite friends was a huge help. It got the word out more and expanded my circle a lot. Because more people came I was able to raise more money, and I also made new friends."
- Let them know what you're doing
Let everyone who comes know what you are doing, what you will experience during your semester living abroad and how it is going to impact you and the children. People are interested to know those things and would love to hear about it. Take a few minutes to thank people and share why you are excited to go!
Has this helped you brainstorm at all? Get creative with how you fundraise and you really can be surprised. A little work can go a long way and volunteering in Ukraine for a semester (or in any of ILP's countries!) may be closer than you think!
Want to learn more about ILP? Click the button below to see what volunteering is like and what you will experience during a semester abroad!