1. Use Social Media: Once your project is posted don’t be afraid to shout it from the rooftops or the screen shots! Donors Choose will give you the option to sync project updates to your Facebook account and share them on your wall. E-mail your project link to your co-workers, school families, plus your own family and friends. I always ask people to please check out my project and consider forwarding it along/share it out with anyone they think may be interested. You never know who will see it and decide they’d like to help out!
2. Find Match Codes: In addition to the Inspire code I talked about above, you can search other match codes and partner funding opportunities that are being offered by state. If your project meets the requirements of the partner funding donors, they can help you drastically reduce the overall cost of your project.
3. Tell How It Helps Your Class: Be specific about how you will use these items in your classroom. Who is it helping and what is it helping them do? Keep it kid centered! Most Donors will select projects where they can feel great about knowing exactly what they helped bring to your students. If your project includes items you will be able to use again and again each year, be sure to point that out too.
4. Patience: Products stay posted on the site for month’s at a time before expiring so don’t get worried if your project isn’t funded right away. You may get a surge of donations when you first share and then go weeks without a donation. This doesn’t necessarily mean your project won’t get funded. My rug was posted the full term and received full funding the last 2 weeks of the project. Continue to share out little reminders that your project is still live.
5. Start Small: Donors Choose will give you a few points to start so that you can create your first project. More expensive items (like iPads and Computers) “cost” way more account points than smaller items in the $100 range. I advise people to start small and work their way up to the bigger projects once you have filled your first project or two. Once you’ve earned six points you can request materials from anywhere, not just the Donors Choose E-Mall. Right now I am looking at starting a project for a series of Non-Fiction books from Carson Dellosa that I could only create because I’ve earned over 6 points.
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