Fundscrip is a simple and effective fundraiser for any group. It does not take a lot of effort, does not cost anything and continues to bring in money every week. I will try to give a description of how it works as well as the benefits that Singing Strings can expect from it. For more complete details and a list of all the participating stores you should go to their website www.fundscrip.com
How it works:
It doesn’t cost you anything. For things that you would normally buy anyway, instead of paying by cash, debit or credit card, you buy gift cards through Fundscrip and use them to pay for your purchases. There is an arrangement between Fundscrip and the stores that Singing Strings receives a certain percentage of the value of the gift card – usually between 3% and 7%. This is credited to your family’s name and so is fund raising directly for your child’s trip to UK in this case.
For example, if you normally spend $500 at Sobeys every month, you would buy $500 worth of gift cards for Sobeys from Fundscrip. This would raise 3% X $500 = $15 for your family, at no cost to you. Cards come in various amounts, from as small as $10 to as much as $250, I think.
And there are dozens of stores, including grocery stores, department stores, restaurants, etc. If you also shop occasionally at Sears, Canadian Tire, Esso, Shoppers Drugmart, etc, you can buy gift cards for these stores and use them. Again, you would earn a percentage on each of these.
What is more, you could ask relatives, friends neighbours to also help out. They could sign up and have their earnings credited to your family, or you could buy a card for them and deliver it to them. You (or friends) could also buy these cards as gifts for birthdays, Christmas etc.
What I like best about Fundscrip is that nobody is donating without getting full value for their money (unlike raffles or walkathons etc.)
Not really. You do have to be careful that you don’t lose the gift card. It is just like cash and if you lose it, it is gone. If you forget to spend it, it is like money forgotten in your wallet. (The stores like this because they have already received your $$ even if you don’t come into the store to spend it)
Also, if you normally use a credit card and get some benefit like Airmiles or dividends, you have to compare to see if it is worth your while. For example, we have a dividend credit card which gives us between 1% and 2% back on all purchases. For us, Fundscrip is better because it gives at least 3% .
How do you pay?
I think Natalie has done a reasonable job of explaining the different possibilities. Personally, I like online payment better than EFT, since I don’t like giving people access to my account (or at least that’s what it feels like – guess that is just my phobia). However, I think EFT is probably the best option; that way all cards can be delivered to our representative and she will distribute them at orchestra practice on Wednesdays. We pay no delivery (assuming we have sufficient orders, which should be no problem), and everything should run smoothly. (I think Natalie is arranging for the possibility of paying by cheque too, if you prefer)
Please sign up with Fundscrip – every family in Singing Strings at all three levels. For those families not in Senior Singing Strings, the funds you raise can go into a general fund to pay for field trips and such for the other levels of the orchestra. Arrange for a method of payment – preferable EFT. Place an order for a card or two, just to get the feel of it. I am sure that after a few orders you will see how easy and convenient and secure it is and place orders regularly for many of your usual purchases, especially groceries, and things like that.
Please feel free to contact me if you have questions or concerns. The best way is to email firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward the email to Alice for her response!