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Say goodbye to bake sales forever

One of the greatest joys of youth is their optimism. Every year school kids across the country optimistically believe they can change the world for the better. From collecting bottle tops to toys to food, children have a never ending desire to give.
Last Oct, the students of Osbourn Park High School shared the same level of optimism when they set out to buy 50 pairs of shoes for a near-by Title I school. The challenge they quickly faced was in how to raise the $500 needed to buy the shoes. In the past, the go-to-options were bake-sales, wrapping paper, cookie dough, and other classic fundraising ideas. A Google search for "school fundraising" shows one the endless fundraising options available to parents, teachers, and students. Every option, however, produces the same results: high time input and low money output.
Out of a desire for a new and better fundraising option, this year, the Osbourn Park High School students and parents opted to leverage the trend of crowd-fundraising as a way to help them raise the $500 which brought them to Student Launcher which is the first and only crowd-fundraising platform dedicated 100% to student fundraising. Crowd-fundraising is the idea that if a lot of people give a little amount, the results will be big. On Student Launcher, the average donor gives $32, which isn't a lot, but if 20 people all give $32, then we have $640 donated.
The Osbourn Park High School students set up a fundraising page on Student Launcher, and within 15 days, 24 donors gave a total of $530 to help them buy shoes. In the end, the students got to spend less time fundraising for their great idea, and more time doing their great ideas… As one parent said to us afterwards,"we can kiss wrapping paper goodbye forever!"

Lisa Nielsen writes for and speaks to audiences across the globe about learning innovatively and is frequently covered by local and national media for her views on “Passion (not data) Driven Learning,” "Thinking Outside the Ban" to harness the power of technology for learning, and using the power of social media to provide a voice to educators and students. Ms. Nielsen has worked for more than a decade in various capacities to support learning in real and innovative ways that will prepare students for success. In addition to her award-winning blog, The Innovative Educator, Ms. Nielsen’s writing is featured in places such as Huffington Post, Tech & Learning, ISTE Connects, ASCD Wholechild, MindShift, Leading & Learning, The Unplugged Mom, and is the author the book Teaching Generation Text.

Disclaimer: The information shared here is strictly that of the author and does not reflect the opinions or endorsement of her employer.

Lisa Nielsen

Lisa Nielsen (opens in new tab) (@InnovativeEdu (opens in new tab)) has worked as a public-school educator and administrator since 1997. She is a prolific writer best known for her award-winning blog, The Innovative Educator (opens in new tab). Nielsen is the author of several books (opens in new tab) and her writing has been featured in media outlets such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal (opens in new tab), and Tech & Learning.  

Disclaimer: The information shared here is strictly that of the author and does not reflect the opinions or endorsement of her employer.