Now that you’re interested in the notion of regifting, here are a few things to make this donation drive fundraiser a real success. Whether you are looking to get some donated items for future auctions, or you would like to encourage people to donate their old digital cameras and cell phones now that they received new ones for Christmas, this info should prove helpful for your raising more publicity for your donation drive.First, I’d recommend crafting together some talking points from a press release for it, and call the assignment editor (or a reporter you’ve been working with) directly! A Letter to the Editor is also great, as it gives you the chance to explain your points nicely, and it’ll most likely be published without trouble. But, at this hectic time of year, you’d probably reach MORE people through a TV report or a quick article in the newspaper.
Next, send the press release via fax, and then call the next day to make sure people got it and to ask if they have any questions on the topic. Normally, I’d wait 2 or 3 days after sending it, but we’re pressed for time here. Ideally, you want them to craft the article prior to Christmas (when they still have a full reporting staff!) and have it published just before and/ or just after Christmas!
Why is this newsworthy?
* It involves a local rescue.
* It involves a charity
* It involves gifts received at Christmas/ Hanukkah.
* It involves the giving spirit and ‘paying it forward.’
* It involves a tax deduction and receipt.
* It involves recycling to help recycled pets!
Both the re-gifting idea and the phone/ camera upgrade are equally helpful to have publicized right around Christmas. Talk with the assignment editor to mention to them that this is a great twist on the usual Christmas story, and it would really help your group. Most assignment editors are friendly people, looking for a new angle on a story idea. Your rescue has that twist!
You can also talk with the producers of your morning radio shows, and ask if they will have you on for a 10 minute interview right around Christmas, if you’re available. The only catch here, is that many morning shows are going to be in ‘repeat mode’ since the station personnel go on vacation. But, perhaps they’ll have a stand-in DJ that will need something to chat about! If you’re available, then offer to give a 10 minute interview for them!
Ok… you’ve asked for specific help in this crunch time, so here goes! I’m going to create the press release and scripts based on regifting, and you can add in a line or two about upgrading digital cameras and such as you see fit.
First, let me just say that Emily Post’s website (the etiquette guru!), even suggests that regifting is fine, and that you can donate the item to a charity: http://www.emilypost.com/etiquette/holiday/regift.htm SO- this is such a timley idea!
Press Release Sample:
(Group’s Logo letterhead)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Web site address
Regifting Helps Rescued Pets
City, State, Date â€” SuperRescue is helping community members extend the holiday spirit through regifting. Turn your unwanted presents into a tax deduction for yourself, and an auction prize for SuperRescue. Our rescue group is looking for recycled presents to help our recycled pets. We all receive presents from well-meaning neighbors and family members which are just not an item we love. Whether it’s a picture frame or a lighted water fountain with soothing sounds that just don’t match your decor, or a sweater the wrong size and color, we all get items that aren’t right for us. Instead of letting those items clutter your home or be shoved to the back of your closets, SuperRescue invites you to turn them into a tax deduction! SuperRescue will be accepting regifting items from now until Dec 31st at our shelter, located at 123 Oak Street, or this Saturday at Petco from 4pm to 8pm.
The gifts will be used in SuperRescue’s upcoming auction in February. The money raised from this and other fundraising projects goes directly to help the 4,000 animals SuperRescue cares for each year. The cost of extensive medical care and surgeries is the greatest factor for some animals, but food and electricity are also needed every day at the rescue. SuperRescue takes on several fundraising projects each year to make ends meet, including the Chocolate Tasting and Auction this February.
SuperRescue is an all breed animal rescue serving all of Lee County. …. (state another 2 sentences about your group, your mission, and your success here.)
For additional information on our rescue and holiday donations, please contact: (all contact information)
# # #
(After you’ve sent the press release, call the assignment editor or DJ’s producer and use this script as your guide to talking points.)
“Good morning, this is Debbie with SuperRescue. I’m calling to check if you’ve received the fax about SuperRescue’s plan for regifting unwanted gifts in OurTown. We’re really excited about the plan, as it will help OurRescue as well as give a tax deduction to our local donors. Do you have any questions about the plan or about SuperRescue?” you ask the person, assuming they’ve glanced at it or even know what you’re talking about.
They reply, “Umm… let me see. What was that again?”
“SuperRescue is asking people to regift their unwanted presents this year for our group to use in an upcoming auction. It’s a win-win situation, since the donors will get rid of a gift they didn’t really want, receive a tax deduction receipt, and SuperRescue will receive items we need for our auction this Spring. It’s a great way for people to “pay it forward” and help SuperRescue by keeping clutter out of their homes. Are you able to do a piece on this unique twist to a Christmastime story? I can provide you with interviews with our Executive Director and our Fundraising Coordinator, as well as provide some photos of our group’s Christmas tree and photos of some adoptable pets these items will help.”
The assignment editor pauses and thinks for a second.
“This sounds like something our roving reporter has been researching. She has been looking for new ideas for Christmas stories, and this twist could fit the bill…… Let me pass you over to Carol.”
And there you have it…. instant publicity! As always, adapt these ideas to make them work best for you!
Purrs and woofs,