What has DonateSmarter done for us?
What has Donate Smarter done for us?
Written by: Carmen Glasser
Co-Founder of Swim Safe Forever (SSF)
SSF was founded in 2010 in Brevard County Florida. We became aware of how many children were losing their lives to this preventable tragedy and we became driven to do something about it. Our mission is to eliminate childhood drowning through education and scholarships. We spoke with families who lost children to drowning, and we learned that overall, they say “I didn’t know.” We also knew that to make an impact we needed community involvement. Drowning is an epidemic killing children in our community, it is the number one cause of accidental death in children between the ages of one and four.
Over the years we have hosted an annual Water Safety Day and 5K events. We added a kids run and an obstacle course. We hosted a Gala and have been involved in the community regularly. We also began expanding by opening chapters in other states. Currently we are operating a chapter in the Outer Banks of North Carolina and one in Tomball Texas.
But fundraising has always been a huge drain on our time and resources. These large-scale events serve a purpose for ensuring our mission is heard and establishing a connection with our community. At the same time these events were not meeting the needs of our organization’s budget. What’s our budget like you ask? Well, for starters we are an all-volunteer force. No one is paid, not the officers, not the board members, nor the committee members. And we pay fees to keep the organization running, such as: liability insurance, website maintenance, postage fees, supplies etc.…
DonateSmarter has developed a method for SSF to create projects which serve as fundraisers. It gives us a platform and a voice to reach our community and even farther! The work DonateSmarter has done to vet charities gives validity to our organization. All charities on Donate Smarter are actual 501c3 organizations, and we all are authorized to solicit donations in the states in which we operate. The tracking mechanisms provide a method to calculate our reach, and monitor our funds raised by project. Theses features have significantly simplified our workload.
The charity profile and unlimited projects on Donate Smarter are simple to create. They serve as a location to maintain all things pertaining to each project, including videos, pictures, and peer to peer (P2P) page promoting and corporate sponsorships. That makes keeping track of several projects easier. It also integrates with Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter so I can update all my social media from one place with one click.
The P2P pages give individuals who support our organization the ability to personalize their message and reach their friends and family organically. The P2P page also tracks the reach of each individual, so they can see how they are directly impacting childhood drowning by spreading our message. Donations are important, but being able to see their impact makes their involvement even more important, and that's the energy that runs our business.
Being able to offer corporate sponsors a direct link to our projects has given us an opportunity we just couldn't find anywhere else. Our first sponsor made a commercial to highlight their work in the community as part of their regular marketing efforts.
We are so thankful for DonateSmarter, It's a great platform for charities to use. Saves me time, money and my sanity but for Swim Safe Forever and the children and families we help, its value is priceless and immeasurable!