How to Set Up a Birthday Fundraiser

| 5 min read Fundraiser Promotion

Happy birthday fundraiser to you!

Many Australians are adding a fundraiser to significant events, like birthdays, anniversaries, memorials or other key personal dates. By donating a date, you can create a meaningful connection to your fundraiser or cause, and encourage your friends and families to chip in instead of buying you a gift.

On GoFundMe, we often see people tap into special occasions to give their crowdfunding efforts an extra push on their big day.

A successful birthday fundraiser

Erica Flament started a GoFundMe fundraising page for her friend’s daughter Maddie who was battling Leukaemia. Erica raised over $10,000 – and $1,500 of that was raised in the space of just one day: Maddie’s birthday. This is how she did it.

For Maddie’s sixth birthday, Erica asked friends and family to each donate $6 to help Maddie beat cancer. She sent out a request on Facebook, asking friends to donate and share. News of the birthday fundraiser spread and more than 85 people donated. A lot of the donations were for the requested $6 but the majority were for $16, $26, $56 and even $106.

But Erica isn’t alone, meet the other inspiring Aussies donating their date:

  1. After their son Aiden passed away from Rhabdomyosarcoma, his family launched a fundraiser in his memory to celebrate his 21st birthday. All donations were sent to RedKite, the team of childhood cancer specialists who helped their family tremendously whilst Aiden was sick.
  2. Little Calen celebrated his very special birthday (on a leap year) by fundraising for a well loved local nurse, Linny, to help with her battle against brain cancer.
  3. Willow dedicated her 13th birthday to raise $700 for the good cause that is Foodbank. “I’m turning 13 soon, and instead of birthday presents I’m raising money to benefit Foodbank Australia Limited“. Well done, Willow!

You can take the same approach around a birthday or any other significant date related to your fundraiser – whether it’s for a personal, medical or charitable cause. As well as special dates in your own life, you can also tie your fundraiser into public dates such as global generosity movement Giving Tuesday.

More tips for your special event or birthday fundraiser

Choose your cause

First decide where you want to send your donations. You might want to fundraise for someone you know who is in need at the moment, an issue or cause you care about, or a registered charity. Once you have decided on the person, cause or charity who will benefit from your act of kindness, you will no doubt be fired up and ready to ask for donations.

Make the birthday or other key date the fundraiser deadline

With any fundraiser, you set a deadline for meeting your fundraising goal. With a birthday fundraiser, you can make the birthday (or maybe the day after) the deadline. The countdown to a deadline can create a sense of urgency and make donors respond more quickly. If you’re doing a fundraiser that’s also connected to an existing national awareness campaign, such as Breast Cancer Awareness Month, think about making your deadline the same as that one and using the birthday or other special date as a call-to-action, as Erica Flament did.

Tell your story

Birthdays and other special dates create a natural storytelling opportunity and telling your story is key to raising funds. With a fundraiser, your story needs to answer basic questions such as who, what, where, when, why and how. What will the funds be used for? What’s your connection to the cause? How will the donations help you or others? When it comes to fundraising, the why is particularly important; i.e. why does the recipient need this donation?

For more tips on how to tell your crowdfunding story to raise more money, see our posts, Great Ideas for Naming your Online Fundraiser, How Images Can Lead to Fundraiser Success, and Why Videos Are Powerful Tools for Fundraising.

Use social media to spread the word

To get the most out of your birthday fundraiser, combine your special-occasion-based fundraising approach with social media tools.

For birthday fundraising ideas using Facebook, have a comb through our Facebook Fundraising Tips To Drive Donations guide.

Host an offline fundraising event such as a birthday party

Fundraising events serve several purposes – they help you raise money for your cause, get people together for a common purpose and raise awareness about your cause in unique ways.

For event ideas, see our post covering our Top 10 Fundraising Event Ideas.

Make the most of GoFundMe’s resources

We’ve put together a comprehensive set of fundraising tips, success stories and lots of other free resources including the following posts to mention but a few: Viral Fundraising, Free Online Fundraising Tools That Will Help You Raise More and Using Social Media to Promote Your Fundraiser.

Let’s make a birthday fundraiser date!

The beauty of fundraisers is the act of people coming together to reach a common goal. What better way to bring people together than on a birthday or another special occasion? With the ideas we’ve outlined here and the resources we’ve provided, your birthday crowdfunding fundraiser should be extra special! Get the party started by starting your fundraiser.

Start your birthday fundraiser