Fundraising Toolkit for Day of Caring Champions

Fundraising Toolkit for Day of Caring Champions Image


Fundraising Toolkit for Day of Caring Champions



United Way’s largest single-day volunteer event returns on June 21, 2023. Join us as we mobilize over 3,000 United Way volunteers across Erie County to use their time and talents to give back to nonprofit organizations that work tirelessly to support the health, education and financial stability of our community every day. 

New this year – Day of Caring volunteers and community members can also choose to register as Day of Caring fundraising champions. Proceeds from this peer-to-peer campaign will benefit both United Way and project host organizations!


Become A Fundraising Champion

United Way is here to provide you with everything you need to know to become a Day of Caring Fundraising Champion. 

All the information on this page can be found in the downloadable version of the Fundraising Toolkit for Day of Caring Champions HERE


Graphics that you can use to promote your crowdfunding campaign can be found HERE, please note that this link will open in Google Drive. 




As if taking part in Day of Caring wasn't fun enough, we've got some amazing prizes to give away to our top Fundraising Champions! Starting Monday, May 22nd at 9 a.m. we will begin our weekly Flash Fundraisers.

How do Flash Fundraisers work?

Flash Fundraisers run from Monday morning at 9 a.m. to Friday at 3 p.m. The individual who raises the most money in that time frame will be crowned that week's Flash Fundraiser Winner! They will be contacted the following Monday by email to make arrangements to collect their prize. 

What can I win? 

We have a list of great prizes that include, Buffalo Sabres tickets, Buffalo Bills tickets, a Buffalo Bills Autographed Cleat, a Buffalo Bills Autographed Football and a Buffalo Bills Autographed Jersey.

Are there other prizes being given away?

Yes! In addition to the chance to win weekly Flash Fundraising prizes, we have different prize levels based on how much each individual raises for their team. 

Fundraising Levels: 

$50 raised — Day of Caring Keepsake

$100 raised — Buffalo Sabres t-shirt

$250 raised — Buffalo Bills t-shirt

$500 raised — Buffalo Bills Sweatshirt


Top Fundraiser — 2023-2024 Buffalo Bandits Season Tickets



What is Day of Caring?
Day of Caring is United Way’s signature volunteer event. Through this one-day event, over 3,000 participants will grow their understanding of community needs, deepen their connection with people and organizations that are driving positive change in our region, and make a hands-on impact on the lives of our most vulnerable neighbors. 

Our Mission
United Way of Buffalo & Erie County brings people, organizations and resources together to create systemic community change. Together, we are working to break the cycle of hardship that affects 40% of Erie County families. 

Volunteerism is one of many ways that United Way carries out its mission and new this year: volunteers and community members can choose to be Day of Caring fundraising champions!



Who can fundraise? Anyone can participate in fundraising! Volunteers are encouraged to be Day of Caring fundraising champions and so are community members. 
Who benefits? That’s up to you! Fundraise on behalf of the project you’re volunteering at or one that connects with you. 
How are proceeds shared? Nonprofits and United Way of Buffalo & Erie County will share a 50/50 split of the money raised for that specific project. 
Fundraising Minimum There is no fundraising minimum required for volunteers or community members. 
Fundraising Goal While project fundraising totals are reached through a team effort, your personal goal is up to you! 
Fundraising Incentives

The fundraising minimum to receive a Day of Caring momento is $100. Day of Caring fundraising champions who raise $2,500 will receive all 
fundraising level prizes and be added into a raffle drawing for a grand prize. There will also be flash prizes throughout May and June. 

Fundraising Deadline June 30, 2023


getting started 

Maximize your impact and invite your community to join your efforts.


Step 1- Sign up! Visit our Day of Caring event page at

Click Become a Fundraiser to get started! Complete the short registration form to join. From there, you can personalize your profile. If you’re fundraising on behalf of a specific project, you’ll also have the chance to join that project’s team!


Step 2- Ask! 
The number one reason that people give is because they are asked. Don’t be shy about telling everyone you know that you are participating in Day of Caring. The national value of a volunteer hour is $31.80. Ask your networks to sponsor an hour or more of your time! If you’re not volunteering, they can give an hour of their time. 

When?  Who To Ask?  Watch Your Total Grow! 
Week 1  Use your team online page to sponsor yourself $52
Week 2  Ask 4 family members/friends for $32 each $128 
Week 3  Ask 4 co-workers for $32 each  $128
Week 4  Ask your boss to sponsor 2 volunteer hours $64
Week 5  Ask your company to match the value of 4 volunteer hours $128
Your 5-Week Grand Total    $500


Step 3- Follow Up!

Always follow up!  Many people will need more than one request to donate and most will appreciate the reminder. Include fun facts and an update on how close you are to reaching your goal. Send a thank you letter, note, or message to your donors. For your sponsors, consider including a crazy picture of you from the event so they remember you next year. 

Step 4- Reach your goal? Keep going! 

The more you raise, the more we can support the needs of our neighbors. Stay tuned for more info about special fundraising challenges and incentives for reaching fundraising benchmarks! 

Step 5- Have Fun! 

Remember to post a photo after your event to your social media accounts to show your supporters that you did it!

Tips to fundraise 

You’ve registered to participate in Day of Caring, you have the date circled on your calendar, now what? Start fundraising today! Before you know it, you will have your goal amount raised and be on your way to supporting the great work being done in your community. 


1. Start Early! 

Although it may seem like you have all the time in the world to fundraise, this event will be here sooner than you think! The sooner you start fundraising, the more money you will raise for your nonprofit and the sooner you will reach your goal.  Remember, you will have the chance to win some amazing prizes based on how much you’ve raised. 


2. Create an Email Schedule!

It is easy to be keen when you start fundraising, but lose steam a couple weeks in. To make sure you are reaching out to your potential donors consistently, create an email schedule, with specific dates and diverse content. This ensures that you will be switching up your messaging, so your potential donors are not receiving the same ask repeatedly. Keep it interesting.

Suggested topics for your emails:

  • Research your non-profit and provide mission related blurbs to add to your emails.
  • This keeps your potential donors updated on WHY you are doing this and how it is helping. Include updates on where you are in the fundraising process and how much more you need to reach your goal.


3. Get Help From Your Support System! 

If your friends and colleagues are not able to donate, that’s OK! There is lots they can do to help you reach your goal; Ask them to share your personal fundraising page on social media. Provide them with “info cards” about the event that include your fundraising website and ask them to distribute it. Ask them to reach out to the people in their lives that may have a connection to the mission, and would consider donating.


4. Make a Video!
As opposed to writing post after post on your social media forums, consider switching it up! Make a video detailing what you are doing and why you are doing it; most viewers will watch a video before they will read a post. It is easier to communicate the mission of the non-profit profit you are supporting when you are speaking about it – the video makes it more personal.


5. Use Your Community Connections!

  • Get something donated from a business in your community (gift certificate, swag bag, service, etc.) 
  • Create a raise-athon week! 
  • In your email and on social media use wording similar to this  “Everyone who donates to me this week, will go in a draw to win ___”
  • At the end of the week, get someone to take a video of you drawing a name, and post it! That person wins something, and you’ve made some extra money! 



Hour Sponsors
The national value of a volunteer hour is $31.80. Ask your networks to sponsor an hour or more of your time! If you’re not volunteering, they can give an hour of their time. 

Corporate Matching 
Many companies match charitable contributions their employees make. See if your company will match donations, total funds raised or the value of your volunteer hours. If they only match employee giving, have as many co-workers give as possible. 

Corporate Donations 
Don’t forget you can ask area businesses to support you.

Office Campaigns 

  • You can put together some mini-fundraisers to benefit your cause 
  • Bake sale – sell cookies at your desk. 
  • Baskets – keep a donation plate on your desk or in a common area 


Fundraisers are really just excuses to have a party! Think of something that you and your friends and/or family like to do and make it a benefit to support Day of Caring. 

Key Elements 

Start planning early 

  • Promote your event 
  • Use social media and e-vites to spread the word quickly and cheaply 
  • Be sure to send out reminders as your event approaches 
  • Tell each guest to bring a friend or two 
  • Decide if you’ll be charging a flat rate or simply asking for a suggested donation 
  • Include a silent auction or raffle to increase donations at your event 
  • Pass around a jar at the event and ask people to donate their change

Don’t know what to plan?? 

We’ve included some great ideas for you below. Not everything on this list will appeal to you. Pick something that sounds like fun and start planning! If you need help on how to plan a great fundraiser, let us know. We are here to help! 

  • Babysitting by Donation 
  • Bachelor/Bachelorette Auction 
  • Bake Sale 
  • BBQ Cook Off 
  • Clothing Swap Night
  • Be a Designated Driver- Ask for donations 
  • Benefit Concert 
  • Bingo Night 
  • Board Game Tournament 
  • Bowling Tournament 
  • Car Wash 
  • Chili/Spaghetti Cook Off 
  • Craft Show 
  • Dinner Party 
  • Dodgeball Tournament 
  • Dog Wash 
  • More ideas are available in the Fundraising Toolkit for Day of Caring Champions Downloadable Here

Fundraising Worksheet & Letter Templates 

A fundraising worksheet that will help you track possible donors for your fundraising efforts, as well as fundraising email templates, and email reminder templates can all be accessed via the downloadable version of our Fundraising Toolkit for Day of Caring Champions, available here



If you still have questions about being a Day of Caring Fundraising Champion please contact Suzette O'Brien | [email protected] | 716-887-2744