Thanks to a news story, a well-timed email, some simple-to-use technology, and people with very big hearts, I reached 10x my goal. Here’s how:
The first email I read this morning was from my contact at the Greater Vancouver Food Bank: “Not sure if you saw already but Ryan Reynolds just donated to your virtual food drive!” No. I had not seen that. I put down my phone, walked over to my computer and there was the notification email. I’m pretty sure my eyeballs hit the laptop screen and my jaw dropped like a Looney Tunes cartoon.
My fundraiser has been up since March 17th, since I first read that Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively donated $1 million to food banks in Canada and the USA. I was inspired to help out locally and that very same day, serendipitously, I received and email from the Greater Vancouver Food Bank about their new “Virtual Food Drive” option.
The Virtual Food Drive is a simple, fun and secure way to fundraise online with your colleagues, friends and family. Invite them to donate or have a virtual shopping experience to support the work of the Greater Vancouver Food Bank.
I signed up right away and the GVFB emailed me to say I was the first person to use the new platform. Upon launch, I received a handful of very helpful contributions from friends and blog readers however, my food drive has sat dormant since the week set it was up. Every few days I promote it on my Twitter account and today was the day that it hit the radar of the benevolent couple.
I sent Ryan a note to thank him for the donation, and to ask permission to share the news about it. He said that he and Blake were happy to help out and spread awareness, and he also made a point to mention how easy it was to make the donation.
It’s incredible to see this chain reaction, and I wonder how many others were inspired by their initial gift of support mid-March. If you would like to keep the momentum going, here’s how you can setup your own Virtual Food Drive — it really is easy!
Create a Virtual Food Drive for the Vancouver Food Bank
- Register online here
- Customize your profile photo, banner image, add a paragraph about your fundraiser (they have templates too) and set your fundraising goal.
The Virtual Food Drive is also a fantastic team builder within organizations, driving friendly competition and the desire to do some good. The GVFB said that often companies may match their employees’ donations to instantly double their impact.
Every single donation is appreciated and can make a huge impact. Remember that for every $1 raised, the GVFB can purchase $3 of local, fresh and healthy food. 100% of the funds raised will be used towards purchasing healthy food to those in need.
If you need any guidance, the team is available to help you out so that your fundraiser can be successful. Follow the Greater Vancouver Food Bank on Facebook and Twitter for more information and community updates.
A HUGE thank you to Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively! And thank you to all who support my charitable initiatives, from simply reading my articles or sharing my posts, to your donations and words of encouragement.