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putting the fun

in fundraising

getting started

Every year, Dance Marathon at SDSU has a fundraising minimum in order to participate in our big event. While we finalize the details on exactly what that number will be for 2024, take a look below at all the ways you can get the ball rolling to ensure you hit it in time to participate in February.

Fundraising can be intimidating, but the possibilities are endless. There are the classic methods like creating a fundraiser on Facebook or posting an Instagram template, but you can also sell clothes or art, or utilize your talents or do challenges in exchange for donations. For a guide on how to do all this and more, keep reading!

Check out our fundraising resources Google Drive folder for templates.

reaching out


Email is one of the most effective, yet underutilized, methods of fundraising outreach for Dance Marathon at SDSU. Donor Drive has pre-loaded templates you can use to reach out to friends, family and co-workers, you can check out what we have pre-written in our Google Drive, or you can reach out to our Participant Relations Team at for more advice. 


Who doesn't love to receive a physical letter in the mail? This method of outreach is very effective with family members who may not be active on social media or check their emails very often. Physical letters, especially handwritten ones, show that you're serious about fundraising for this movement and are willing to put the extra time and care into earning donations.

social media

Facebook Fundraisers

Did you know that the average Facebook fundraiser raises $202? That's more than the minimum to attend our big event in February. Facebook fundraisers connect directly to your Donor Drive account, so any donations you receive through the fundraiser will automatically be added to the total you see -- pretty neat! This is one of the most effective, yet lowest effort, fundraising ideas out there, and we encourage all of our Dance Marathon at SDSU participants to create one.

Tip: Invite every one of your Facebook friends to your fundraiser, people can't donate if they haven't seen it!


Here's a tutorial on how you can start your Facebook fundraiser today:


Instagram Fundraising Templates

You've probably seen them before -- one of the most popular ways SDSU students raise funds for causes is through Instagram fundraising templates. These are Instagram stories that feature dollar amounts that the poster is trying to collect from friends and followers. They usually add up to some kind of goal, and are themed for the cause the person is fundraising on behalf on. The donations are usually sent directly to that individual, usually through Venmo, who later deposits them into their own Donor Drive. Dance Marathon at SDSU has a plethora of such fundraising templates, and those can be found in the "templates" highlight of our Instagram.

Note: When hosting an Instagram fundraiser, make sure to transfer the money raised from your personal Venmo or CashApp to your Donor Drive page. These funds won't count and won't go towards the Hospital if you don't!


Have you tried Snapchatting everyone in your contacts telling them what you're doing and what you're collecting money for? Most people are willing to give at least a dollar and, if you're like the average college student, you probably have at least a few dozen Snapchat friends -- you do the math! Instagram-style fundraising templates can also be pulled off on Snapchat, but this is less common.

tips for effective outreach

fundraising ideas

  • Host a bake sale

  • Tell your friends you'll eat something spicy or disgusting and film it if you raise a certain amount

  • Ask 10 friends to donate $2

  • Offer to tutor a friend, classmate or neighbor

  • Be someone's personal Uber

  • Post silly or embarrassing photos on social media (middle school photos are always a hit)

  • Set up a coin jar in a high traffic area. E.g. your kitchen, office, residence hall or family car

  • Dedicate your birthday to the kids and ask for donations instead of gifts

  • "Rent" out your Hulu, Spotify, Netflix, etc. accounts 

  • Walk neighborhood dogs

  • Offer to run errands for neighbors

  • Sell old or unworn clothes to consignment stores or online on apps like Poshmark

  • Host a yard sale (especially effective during college moving season, June-August)

  • Got skills? Utilize your artistic talents to sell jewelry or art on Etsy or social media

  • Tell your friends you'll go a day without shaving for every $5 raised -- most effective for men

  • Coordinate a car wash

  • If you work in a restaurant, ask them to consider donating a percentage of their proceeds on one day

  • Shave your head or facial hair if you raise a certain amount

  • During the holiday season, go caroling for donations

  • Participate in a challenge, such as wearing a onesie on campus all day, if you hit a fundraising goal

  • Personalize your Donor Drive page. Pages with a photo of you are much more likely to receive donations!

  • Customize the "story" section of your Donor Drive. Dedicating your fundraising to one of our Rady miracle kids is much more compelling to a donor than a generic bio.

  • Remember, people donate to other people, usually not to causes. Make sure your donors know the money they give goes to your personal fundraising page.

  • Keep in mind the worst thing that anyone can say is no. Not everyone will say yes, but enough people will!

  • Be creative! No idea is too small, and sometimes some of the simplest ideas can yield the biggest gains

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