Message Boards



The forum is in read only mode.
Looking for advice? Join us on Facebook

Get advice, ideas, and support from other parent group leaders just like you—join our closed Facebook group for PTO and PTA Leaders & Volunteers .

Silent Auction Questions

11 years 6 months ago #161930 by mtchard
Replied by mtchard on topic Re:Silent Auction Questions
Getting people from outside your community is key. While the parents of students may on average have lower income levels, there are probably people in the community and the surrounding community that are in a better position to support. Getting the word out is key. Find as many free avenues of promotion as you can to keep costs down. Most towns have a printer that will print free event flyers to distribute around town. Check with your paper, tv and radio stations about free community events postings. Create an email to send out to parents asking them to forward to their friends and families. I run the auction for a private school and we are always trying to expand our support base so that the parents who pay the tuition do not have to be the same ones buying all of the items. Think about friends from church and sporting events. What about the businesses you solicit?

Good luck with your auction!
11 years 6 months ago #161924 by Rose H
Replied by Rose H on topic Re:Silent Auction Questions
Hi mamagug,

Love the idea of doing those special "experiences,'' like riding in the firetruck or police car. Those are always huge hits with the kids!

Thanks for sharing all your great info!

Rose C.
Community Manager
11 years 7 months ago #161916 by mamagug
Replied by mamagug on topic Re:Silent Auction Questions
We have each classroom do an art project (can be ANYTHING), and this is where the bulk of the money raised comes from -- projects have been sold for a couple thousand each, and it only takes two people that want it for the sale price to escalate. Projects can be paintings, refinished pieces of furniture, clocks -- there is no limit, and the kids have a hand in creating the art (and younger kids often personalize it with a name or quilt block or something).
As far as soliciting sponsors & donations, we had the best luck this past year with an email -- mailed letters were almost completely ignored -- but a phone call would work too if you can get to the right person. I found that by stopping by in person, the person to talk to was rarely available. We asked for companies without items to sell for "sponsorships" -- and gave them advertising space in the catalog. And we found that "experiences" were by far the best items -- things the average person couldn't purchase. Ride to school on a firetruck, in a police car, etc. Autographed sports items did well too, but just hard to come by! We've had breakfast with certain teachers, party at the principal's house.
We didn't include the tax number, except for when specifically asked (or we knew from past years that you weren't considered without it) -- Target for example, and many places have online donation applications.
Good luck!
11 years 8 months ago #161537 by Ninja4Good
Hi chicbaby27,

I understand how difficult it can be, trying to fundraise for your school and feeling bad because your parents or community cannot support find it. I have always looked for creative ways to build my auctions. You want to try something new every year. Auctioning the childrens art is a beautiful and easy way to make some cash for your school, but how about trying to ask some parents to donate services or being creative with their talents. For example, is there a stay at home mom that is famous for baking? Will she donate a baked item for a year? You would not believe how exciting it is to know that you will receive a different cookie, cupcake or batch of muffins every month for a year! I had someone who donated her time by cleaning someone's house, and for parents that don't have any time, this was a welcome sight. Also, if there is a parent willing to donate their house for a night, throw a slumber party with a buy-in. The buy-in does not have to be money, it can be a service for a future auction or fundraiser. Every child can bring a snack, and it is no cost to the home owner other than sleep deprivation! Also, use your teachers talents! Is there a teacher that enjoys golf? A private lesson from this teacher cleverly advertised like he is a "pro" will make the kids laugh and want to be included. I'm running out of time, but I will be back to answer your other questions later today.

Good luck to you!
11 years 8 months ago #161408 by Trisha
Replied by Trisha on topic Re:Silent Auction Questions
Our school is about 60% Free and reduced lunch, elementary school, grades 3rd - 5th with approximately 275 students. So, small and broke. We have a great auction every year that we call "Art Show and Silent Auction". Each class chooses a theme and every student does an art project that is for sale that night as part of their art class time. The artwork is displayed throughout the hallways. We turn the lights off in the hall and hang clear icecicle lights to give it a little galleryish feel. Parents and community members come look at the art and purchase a piece of art (usually their child's) if they'd like for an annonymous donation amount put into an envelope and handed to the volunteer in the hallway. Donations have ranged from $1 - $100. Then, in the library we have our silent auction. I have found that the letters need to be sent out 8 -12 weeks ahead of time to the major places that have donation request policies on line. The local business I usually go to in person 6 - 8 weeks before our event. I don't ask for specific things in the letter, but I do include monetary donation as one of the types of donations we accept. We usually just keep that money to add to our totals that night instead of purchasing an auction item. At our auction items typically sell for a little under the value. Good Luck with your auction! Last year we raised $8500. Our goal this year is $10,000. So small compared to some schools, but for our demographic and size we feel great about those numbers!
11 years 9 months ago #161295 by Rose H
Replied by Rose H on topic Re:Silent Auction Questions
Hi Chixbaby27!

Have you checked out our Ultimate Donation List thread?

It is packed with really great information from parents about companies that will donate and how to best approach them.

On this thread, many folks have shared that it is important to be brief and polite when requesting donations. It helps to check out the web sites of the companies your are interested in. They often give specific instructions on how to contact them (including if they want it by email or other method).

Some folks have said it does help to go in person to local companies that might be able to support you.

Speaking of local companies, you can seek out monetary donations, but perhaps in exchange for an ad in the silent auction brochure (book).

I think you'll find lots of help on this thread!

Good luck,
Rose C.
Community Manager
Time to create page: 0.381 seconds
Powered by Kunena Forum
^ Top