Congratulations to Stephanie C., the Philly Susan G. Komen 3-Day Milestone Award Winner

Congratulations to Stephanie C., the Susan G. Komen Philadelphia 3-Day Milestone Award Winner! The 2014 Komen Philadelphia 3-Day is Stephanie’s 7th 3-Day, after having done her first 3-Day in Philadelphia in 2006. Stephanie has also crewed one time in Philadelphia in 2012, an experience that she really enjoyed, noting, “I was on trash clean-up and I loved it.”

Over the years, Stephanie has raised over $135,000; an incredible amount that has no doubt helped change many lives. What’s one of Stephanie’s fundraising tricks? “Do something that is FUN! I hold a golf outing each year and each year I have been able to increase sponsorship fees because I ensure my guests enjoy the day. I now have a following that I believe I will be able to sustain as long as I have the energy,” Stephanie said. Stephanie started hosting the golf outings in 2009, and they end up being big fundraisers for her, sometimes netting more than $20,000.

Like many others who embark on their 3-Day journey, Stephanie joined the 3-Day after a friend who had been touched by breast cancer asked her to walk. “My motto is always that I will try something once and if I don’t like it I don’t have to do it again. I got injured on my first 3-Day in 2006, so I waited two years to walk and my inspiration since then has been all those that have been afflicted by this dreaded disease,” said Stephanie.

As a seasoned 3-Dayer, what is it about the 3-Day that keeps Stephanie coming back? Stephanie describes the moment she knew was coming back when “survivors walked into Villanova stadium after my first 3-Day. I had trained and trained and trained and it was not real until I looked around as all the participants took off their sneakers to pay tribute to the survivors who had the strength to do the walk. It was a humbling and overwhelming experience and even after six walks – I still cry.” (So do we, Stephanie.)

When asked to share her best advice for those new to the 3-Day family, Stephanie said to never underestimate the importance of stretching, and above all, to have fun. “The most important thing is to have fun. I talk to new people and enjoy my surroundings (especially when walking in new places). Anyone who is out there walking is blessed and I am thankful that God has given me the strength and tenacity to make the trek each year. Sixty miles is nothing compared to what those that are battling cancer deal with.”

After raising $135,000 and walking over 360 miles total, Stephanie has one more thing to tell you. “Remember – you make a difference. No matter how small – it adds up to be immense,” she said. We couldn’t agree more.

The Life Cycle of a Matching Gift

There are hundreds of fundraising tools, tips and ideas available to Susan G. Komen 3-Day® participants who are working toward their fundraising goals, but I am consistently surprised at how underused matching gifts are. Matching gifts are a way for a donor to double his/her donation, but for some reason, many people don’t pursue the option. Perhaps it’s from a lack of understanding about how the process works, or a misconception that it’s too complicated or time-consuming. I’m hoping to clear some of that up here.

In general, a Komen 3-Day matching gift works like this:

  • Meet Petunia.
  • Petunia has just made a $100 donation to her sister Daisy, who is raising money for the 3-Day®. She’s very proud of what Daisy is doing, and wants to support her as much as she can.
  • Petunia works for Awesome, Inc., which has a company matching gift program. Many companies (especially larger corporations) offer matching gifts as a way to inspire their employees to give charitably.
  • So, Petunia goes to the Matching Gifts info page on the 3-Day website (The3Day.org/Matching) to look up Awesome, Inc., and confirms that they do match with the 3-Day. Hooray! The Matching Gifts page has info about how Awesome, Inc.’s matching process works, so she submits a request for Awesome, Inc. to match her $100 donation with $100 of their own.
  • Every company’s matching gift process is unique, but in most cases, the company will use an online matching gift portal (such as EasyMatch or CyberGrants) to process requests. Some companies use paper forms that must be mailed in. Petunia confirms that Awesome, Inc. uses an online process, so she logs in and enters the correct information about her gift. She makes sure to specifically designate the Susan G. Komen 3-Day as the recipient of the matching gift (as opposed to her local Susan G. Komen® affiliate or Komen headquarters), and includes Daisy’s full name and the city where she’s walking, to make sure Daisy gets credit for the match.
  • The 3-Day matching gifts team receives notification of the match request from Petunia/Awesome, Inc., and once they have verified Petunia’s original donation, they will approve the match and send approval notification back to Awesome, Inc. This process can take up to 4-6 weeks, but is usually much faster.
  • Even though Awesome, Inc. may not send the matching funds to the 3-Day right away (many companies only pay out matches once a quarter, or twice yearly), credit for the matching gift will be added to Daisy’s fundraising total as soon as the match is approved.
  • And just like that, Petunia’s $100 donation has doubled, and twice as much money goes back to Susan G. Komen® and the fight to end breast cancer – the cause that the sisters care so much about.

The number one piece of advice we give to participants who are raising money for the 3-Day is to ASK, and that advice carries over into asking about matching gifts too. When you send out your fundraising emails or post on Facebook, be sure to remind your donors about 3-Day matching gifts and ask them to inquire with their employers about getting a match.

You can find more detailed information about the matching gift process, and a searchable list of companies that currently match with the 3-Day, at www.The3Day.org/matching. And as always, the 3-Day coaches are available at 800-996-3DAY to answer any questions you might have about the matching gift process or the status of a request that has already been made.

Congratulations to the Twin Cities 3-Day Top Fundraisers!

Today marked Day 1 of the Susan G. Komen 3-Day® in Twin Cities , and walkers and crew enjoyed Minnesota’s lush green landscape at scenic spots like the Lake Harriet band shell, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, and B.H. Nelson Park.  Upon arrival at the Komen 3-Day camp, participants enjoyed new camp elements that premiered last weekend in Michigan, like a make-your-own trail mix bar, and cozy bean bags and foot rests. The 3-Day® camp show wrapped up a beautiful day, and our friends from Bank of America helped us recognize the top fundraisers for the Twin Cities 3-Day. Please join us in saying congratulations to these inspiring people!

Top Fundraising Team: Northern Nippys, $62,445 raised

This is the Northern Nippys’ sixth year at the 3-Day, and in that time they’ve raised an incredible $184,195 total. The 2014 Northern Nippys team has 33 members.

Northern Nippys Team Captain Laura

Northern Nippys Team Captain Laura

Top Crew fundraiser: Sharon Gruenhagen, $4,650 raised 

Hats off to Sharon Gruenhagen who raised $4,650; and has raised $21,963 lifetime total. This is Sharon’s  7th event as a crew member in Twin Cities; she is part of the Sweep team this year.

Top Crew Fundraiser Sharon G.

Top Crew Fundraiser Sharon G.

Top Individual Fundraiser:  Patricia Miller, $14,000 raised 

Patricia Miller raised $14,000 this year; and has raised an astonishing $70,739 in the six years and six events she has completed. Patricia lost her mother to breast cancer 60 years ago when she was just 5 years old. She walks today because she wants to help others who fight this disease.

Top Individual Fundraiser Patricia M.

Top Individual Fundraiser Patricia M.

We’re so grateful to these amazing participants and for all of you who take steps every day to help us end breast cancer forever. To learn more about the top individual, Crew and team fundraisers in Twin Cities, as well as our eight series walkers, check out the framed table-top displays in the dining tent in camp.