Reach out to the company you work for or businesses to whom you are a loyal customer. When asking merchants to donate goods/gift certificates, remind them that you are asking on behalf of the kids!
Use the included letter and form when approaching businesses. Don't be shy! Many businesses are awaiting your request. They rely on word-of-mouth referrals, visibility and community goodwill to help bring in customers. Giving to a school is a way for them to drive traffic to their businesses. It's a win/win; they are helping us, but we are helping them, too--and it's tax deductible.
Carry the forms with you when you are eating out and shopping. The most successful categories for our past auctions are: wine, restaurants, travel, sports, summer camp and entertainment.
When you approach someone for support, get his/her name and business card. Follow up. Making it easy by calling in a friendly reminder, and assisting with filling out or submitting forms is often critical to securing a donation.
Sponsorships range from $100 to $5,000 and custom sponsorships are available. Small business owner? Place your business card in the event program for $firstname.lastname@example.org