Sophia Smolenski - A fundraising story - Outward Bound

Sophia Smolenski - A fundraising story


Don’t hold back, just send your letter to as many people as you can (I think it also helps if you take it to a business personally); mention that every little bit helps so that they don’t think that you are asking for the full amount.


Sailing the sounds




How did you fundraise for your course?
I had $30 to my name when I decided I wanted to go to Outward Bound and I
decided I would fundraise as much of the course fees as I could. I did this by washing cars, mowing lawns, saving every cent and because I like sewing, I offered to mend and adjust clothing for people as well as sewing things to sell. I also gathered heaps of my own stuff for a garage sale and I wrote a small notice which I printed out and put in letterboxes all over my neighbourhood and at local businesses to say that I was fundraising and did they have anything I could put in my garage sale? This was really successful and I ended up having garage sales every weekend for two months. I also sent letters to my local Lions and Rotary clubs as well as other businesses and organizations - this lead to a quarter of my course fees being covered!

How did you start the process (what was the first step to starting
your fundraising)?
I started by getting a fundraising form from Outward Bound and then writing a letter to give to businesses and organisations. I also wrote a list of all my ideas for fundraising.

What was the biggest challenge when fundraising and how did you
overcome it?
The biggest challenge was getting the confidence to ask people for help, but I think writing a letter helps and you can pass it on to people and if they can’t help they may be able to pass it on to someone they know who can.

What advice can you give for people fundraising for their Outward
Bound course?
DON”T GIVE UP! It might seem impossible but it really isn’t. Something which helped me to keep on track was making a chart which showed how much money I needed and I could fill in how much I had. Updating this chart became the highlight of the week for me and it was good motivation. Tell all your friends that you are fundraising and if you know anyone who has been on a course (even if you don’t know them that well) tell them about your fundraising because after being on a course and knowing how amazing it is you really want everyone else to go as well! My only other advice is to GO FOR IT! It turned out that fundraising for my Outward Bound course was one of the most enjoyable and most rewarding things I have done and I have no regrets. Good luck!