Knock your fundraiser out of the park

A fundraiser is a great way to unite your mates and family to get behind what’s important to you. We’ve gathered a few of the best tips and tricks from our fundraising champions to get you started.

Our Rafiki fundraising champions – Rafiki Warriors – are a global community of people who are fired up for change. They put their passion into action, raising much-needed funds to change the world for Rafiki Mwema’s children. And anyone can do it. Whether you’re eight or 80, you can show your support for Rafiki Mwema by holding a fundraiser. 

We asked a few Rafiki Warriors what their tips are for fundraising success, and they delivered.

Golfing and giving – a match made in heaven

When Áine Flannery decided to hold a fundraiser, she chose a sport she enjoys and partnered with corporate sponsors she knew through her industry connections. Áine organised a golf tournament at Perth’s beautiful Wembley Golf Course and sold the tickets through Humanitix.

Businesses were invited to sponsor holes and donate products for the auction that was held during the three course dinner. We created a video forÁine to play at the dinner, which introduced attendees to Rafiki and all that we do, so that they could clearly understand how their gifts will make a difference.

Áine’s fundraiser was a smashing success, with over $11,000 raised. We asked her for her top three tips on creating a fundraiser:

  1. Choose an event that you’re passionate about. Your enthusiasm will be infectious and a drawcard for friends and colleagues to join you.
  2. You won’t see the months creep up, so ensure you leave yourself sufficient time to organise everything. There’s always more than you originally think to do. A good list with milestones to hit will make the process smoother and ensure you’re ready on time.
  3. Take the time to thank sponsors and large donors in person if possible. Show them photos and updates of what their contribution meant and the benefits to the day and to Rafiki. This also opens the door for further and continued support, especially if you plan to make the fundraiser a regular event.

A Facebook fundraiser that took off

Denise Carnihan has a real heart for Kenya. She calls the beautiful country her second home, and she and her husband have even set up a primary school there. When she discovered Rafiki Mwema, she was deeply drawn to what we do, having experienced in person the abject poverty in Kenya and the plight of so many children.

Because it’s been tough for so many during the pandemic, Denise decided to keep her fundraising target low and set it at $100. She didn’t know how much would be raised, but she really wanted to do something meaningful for her birthday.

And then her friends and family rallied behind her and donated over $2,000!

It goes to show that you should never hold back from asking, because you never know who might be ready and wanting to give. Her friends know her Kenya story and understand how much she wants to make a difference. Denise says she wrote a personal fundraising message, and it’s clear that her passion shone through and motivated her friends and family to give. 

Make it yearly, just like your birthday

Our birthdays come around once a year, so why not hold a Facebook birthday fundraiser every year? Rebecca ran a hugely successful birthday fundraiser on Facebook, setting a target of $200 and ending with $770 in donations! Her commitment to supporting Rafiki was reflected in her personally written fundraiser message. She and her partner Joanne also sponsor two little girls through Rafiki – yet another way to make a difference that lasts a lifetime.

Rebecca has a fantastic list of fundraising tips:

1. Share early – well in advance of your birthday. It helps to get people interested a good four to six weeks before your actual birthday.

2. Share posts regularly leading up to the birthday about who Rafiki are and what they do, but say why this is important to YOU. It has to be personal, so friends and family feel they are really doing it for you.

3. Make the target amount achievable. A lot more people will donate when they see you’re only five bucks off your target or past it. You can always increase it afterwards.

4. Message friends and family directly and say hey, not doing much for my birthday but would love for you to help me with this charity.

5. Shout out to anyone and everyone who donates straight away. People love the public acknowledgment. Plus it creates some healthy competition.

6. Keep the fundraiser open after your birthday and try to get some late donations.

7. Tell everyone who donated what the money goes to, like the mini bus or feeding program. It makes things more real and allows people to feel that they really helped. Most people who donate once will do it every time after because they are now familiar with it and invested in it.

8. Let people know you’re grateful for their donation, no matter how big or small. And also be grateful and show appreciation if they don’t donate but they do share or like the posts. The non monetary interest is just as important.

9. Last of all, create a birthday fundraiser every year. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Then everyone will know automatically what they can give you!

Start your fundraiser

From lemonade stalls to birthday donations, and fitness challenges to parties, any fundraiser you can imagine is welcome at Rafiki Mwema! If you make it about something you love to do, it’ll be a success. We’re here to help with ideas and inspiration, so reach out if you’d like to chat.

We recommend accepting donations and selling tickets online. It makes it easy to keep track of, automatically sends messages and tax receipts. Facebook fundraisers are really easy to set up and promote. If you’d like to hold a different type of fundraiser, you can head over to our website and set up your online fundraising page there.

Need more inspiration?

Read a few more stories of inspiring fundraising Rafiki Warriors:

Eloise Roberts’ birthday fundraiser

Clare Southwell and Marese Emanuel’s Sydney to Hobart


Rafiki Mwema Registered Charity
FIA Organisational Member - Code Compliant