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How to Raise Money without Asking for Money

how-to-raise-money-without-asking-for-money.jpgAs the economy continues to squeeze donors, a recent report conducted by Campbell Rinker showed disturbing results—that nearly 7 in 10 Americans say they will give more sparingly to charities in the coming months. As a result, more organizations are looking to find ways for donors to help them financially without having to dip into their pocketbooks again. Here are eight ways organizations can ask supporters to raise money without writing a check:

  1. Shop online: As the holiday season approaches and people get set to spend significant funds on gifts, ask them to start their shopping at GoodShop. GoodShop is a shopping portal that donates a percentage of almost every purchase from more than 2,500 stores (including Gap, Target, Staples, and Macy's) to your organization. In addition, GoodShop lists more than 100,000 coupons, so your supporters can save money at the same time as they are earning money for your nonprofit! Your organization can sign up here.
  2. Recycle electronics: Hold a gadget drive where supporters bring in their old electronics (including phones, computers, calculators, etc.) and turn them in for cash. You can read more at Gazelle.
  3. Redeem credit card points. Ask members to turn their unused credit card points into a charitable donation to your cause. Both American Express and Citi Card offer this program.
  4. Search the Internet: is a Yahoo!-powered search engine that donates about a penny per search to your cause. You use it exactly as you would any other search engine, but each time someone does a search, a donation is made! The ASPCA, for example, has already earned over $34,000 from its supporters' searches! Your organization can join the more than 100,000 causes participating with GoodSearch by signing up here.
  5. Meet someone for a drink: Partner with a local bar (or restaurant or retailer) and create a campaign whereby you will send people to their establishment, and each time someone "checks in" at that location via FourSquare, the establishment will make a donation to your cause. You'll earn money for your cause and provide great marketing for them.
  6. Donate airline and hotel miles: Although airlines and hotels do not have specific programs that allow flyers to donate miles to any organization they choose, most airlines allow people to use their frequent flier miles to buy tickets or office items for other people. Ask your supporters to use their miles to buy tickets or office items for your organization.
  7. Dine Out: is scheduled to launch soon. Once it does, up to 6 percent of the money spent on a meal at 10,000 restaurants across the country will be donated to your cause. Watch for the announcement that GoodDining has launched.
  8. Volunteer: There are a handful of companies that match volunteer hours with funds. For example, Microsoft will match volunteer time at $17 an hour through its Volunteer Time Matching program. Boeing, Exxon, Intel, Chevron, and Bank of America have similar programs.

Scott Garell,
© 2011,

Scott Garell is CEO of, a Yahoo!-based search engine that donates money to charity for every search performed through GoodSearch and every shopping purchase made through

Topics: Fundraising