Fundraising Ideas You Might Never Have Thought Of

Fundraising for the 3-Day is a large commitment. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t still be fun, especially if you get creative! If you’re in a rut, we have creative ideas and approaches that you might never have thought of on your own, to help turn your fundraising into FUNdraising. Plus, for added motivation, we also have a fundraising contest going on right now. Read on for new ways to hit all your fundraising goals this year.

  1. Rent a port-a-potty: Yes, you read that right! Those port-a-potties you “love” during the 3-Day can help you raise money too! Talk to your town and find out about the next parade or community event, then rent a port-a-potty. Decorate it (of course we’d suggest pink!) and ask people for donations in order to use it.
  2. No one is a bad idea: And we mean everyone! Even ask people like your auto mechanic or dry cleaner for a donation. You can also ask them for coupons that you can use at a fundraising event or as a reward to teammates who hit a certain fundraising amount.
  3. Spare change: Set up a jar next to your desk at work and ask people to empty their pockets at the end of the day and donate any spare change they have. No one likes carrying lots of change around in their pocket anyway!
  4. Host a Mow-a-thon: Now that summer is upon us, take advantage of the warm weather! Host a weekend lawn Mow-a-thon and try to mow as many lawns as possible in one weekend. Start with your neighbors and then ask them to spread the word! Wear pink while you mow. 😊
  5. Walk where people see: Set up a treadmill outside of a store or farmer’s market and walk for donations. Set out a donation can for people to drop donations in. We guarantee people will stop and take notice!
  6. Pet birthday party: Have a fun birthday party for your pet—or a friend’s pet! They happen more often than you think, but this time, really go all out. Serve pet-themed treats and ask everyone to wear ears! Then, ask for a suggested donation at the door.
  7. Personal vending machine: Have you ever thought about how much money the vending machine at work likely makes in a single week? You can be your own vending machine! Purchase some of the office favorites in bulk (or have them donated if you can!) then sell them from your desk at a profit. Your desk will be the office favorite in no time!
  8. Say in style: We love a good 3-Day wig or pink hairdo! Color your hair pink or shave your head for donations. Hype the new style up on social media and ask for donations to support your new do. Then, do a Facebook Live or other promotion of your new style to ask for more donations after you take the style plunge.
  9. Free rent: Ask your apartment complex to donate one month’s rent to sponsor you. It’s a simple strategy, with no more investment than you usually spend.
  10. Get creative: Ask a local artist or creative friend to donate a piece of artwork that you can raffle off to those who have donated. If you’re a creative, you can even design the art yourself!

So, let’s get fundraising! If you have any more FUNdraising ideas, add them to the comments below. Our 3-Dayers have the best fundraising knowledge. We want to hear from you!

Komen Advocacy Summit: What is your story? Will you come share it with Congress?

Guest Blog Post By Sally Dunbar, 3-Day Walker

Hands Up For Hooters, Team Captain

I am a breast cancer warrior. I am also a Political Bozo. Which makes it a bit ironic that I was invited to travel to Washington, D.C. last week to advocate to Congress for breast cancer. Truth be told, I had to look up who my house representatives are. How do you refer to them face to face? And I’m still unclear if D.C. is actually a state! Yeah… a political Bozo — first class.

I wasn’t sure what I could offer the Advocacy Summit last week, or why I got the emailed invitation, but how could I say NO? (For the record, I paid my own way — they do not waste money flying bozos around the country!) I figured I would learn something. I could see our nation’s Capitol. And hey — I could probably recruit for my team! So I went. By way of background, I am team captain of Hands Up For Hooters — a huge Komen 3-Day team that primarily walks in San Diego. This year we also have walkers in Boston, Philadelphia, Seattle and Dallas/Fort Worth. In the past four years, we have raised $660,000 for Komen.

I arrived at the Hyatt on Capitol Hill in D.C. for our first day-long training session on Wednesday, May 1st. There were more than 250 men and women in attendance, including Komen staff, as well as CEO Paula Schneider, and Victoria Wolodzko, Senior Vice President of Komen’s Mission. Throughout the three days, I met many Komen Affiliates from all over the US. I met Komen Advocates Scholars, and Research Scholars. (I didn’t even know what those were before.) I met many women living with metastatic breast cancer who were very moving to hear as well as survivor advocates. I also met many African American women who were specifically invited to help give voice to the black community about breast cancer through Komen’s Speak Truth to Power conference. Oddly, I only met two or three other 3-Dayers. I hear there were 10 registered, but I didn’t meet them. Also, oddly, I met many people who did not know what the 3-Day was! How could that be? Clearly, we need a louder voice!

Thursday our group of more than 250 marched to Capitol Hill. All 13 of us from California met with Senator Dianne Feinstein and Senator Kamala Harris’s office. Then two of us met with my House Representative, Ami Bera, and another group member’s representative, Tom McClintock. Komen had pre-arranged meetings scheduled for us with their Health Legislative Aides for 15 minutes each.

During our meeting on the Hill, we had 4 main “Asks” to request their support of:

  1. To increase research funding to the National Institute of Health (NIH), which includes the National Cancer Institute, from $39B, to $41.5B, despite the president’s proposed budget of a $4.6B decrease. Interestingly 80% of our voters support more money for NIH for Bio Tech research, even if it means raising taxes, because they understand the importance to all of us and our families. This “ask” struck me in that we were advocating for funding ALL health issues, not just breast cancer.
  2. Maintain funding for Early Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection (B-CEP) at $275M. This helps low income and under- or un-insured women get early screening and diagnostics before they advance to higher stage cancers.
  3. Co-sponsor a new Komen led bill recently introduced by Representative Debbie Dingell (D-MI), called the Access to Breast Cancer Diagnosis Act, aiming to eliminate the disparity between the out-of-pocket cost of diagnostic imaging and tests. The average patient cost of a mammogram is $231. The average patient cost of an MRI used to further diagnose a suspect mammogram is more than $1,000. How many women will forego the advanced diagnosis because they can’t afford it? This bill will lessen patient out-of-pocket costs, leading to more early diagnosis and more lives saved.
  4. Sign on to the Cancer Drug Parity Act (H.R.1730/S.741) as a co-sponsor. Think about this. You have breast cancer. You need chemo. You go to the clinic for your IV infusion with a $25 copay as this is an office visit and what your treatment will cost. But let’s say there is a newer, better drug for you that comes in pill form. Wow. Easy peasy. No driving to the infusion center. No babysitters. No doctors or technicians involved. No travel. No time off work. You just pop the pill a home. This, however, is paid for under your prescription coverage, which for most of us is a 20% co-pay. My partner on the hill has stage 4 metastatic breast cancer. Her treatment caused peripheral neuropathy which numbed her hands, and ended her career as an OB-GYN. So she has no job. Her current drug co-pay is $120 per month. But when that drug quits working for her, the next step is a drug costing $13,000 a month. Her co-pay will be $3,500 each month. She has a daughter in college and she said if she has to choose between her daughter’s tuition, and one month’s co-pay — well, she is a Mom. She knows what she would choose.

We asked our representatives to support eliminating the disparity between IV and oral chemotherapy treatments, so patients like Kelly don’t have to make these types of decisions.

Honestly, I crammed my head with factoids in preparation for these meetings, yet still felt totally inadequate to speak to these issues. Then a bit of divine intervention arrived in the form of what else? My UBER DRIVER from the airport! “What are you in D.C. for?” she asked. I told her. “Really? I have spent my career conducting advocacy fly-ins for decades. I teach people how to advocate. I am currently a professor of humanities, getting my PHD in… blah blah.” Honestly, I didn’t even understand what her PHD was in. But it was a PHfrikkenD! I asked the obvious — “Whachadoin driving for UBER, Doc?” She replied, “I have to fund my research”.

She gave me two invaluable tips for advocating. “First, don’t wear metal to the Capitol — it sets off the metal detectors.” Check. “Second, forget all the factoids Komen gives you. Just tell your story. And make them cry. THAT is what they will remember.”

So that is what I did. I let my partner explain the details about our asks, as the aides dutifully wrote notes (or maybe finished their morning’s Sudoku puzzle — it was hard to tell). Then I told my story.

“I want to tell you why I paid my own way to come to D.C. from Sacramento to talk to you. 14 years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It scared the begeezus out of me. The doctor didn’t pull my treatment plan out of his hat. It was research from the gazillions of women before me that told my doctors what treatment I should have. And it worked. I am here today. But I learned there was more work to be done because too many men and women are still dying. I started walking and fundraising for Komen, because they were working to end death from breast cancer. I formed my team — Hands Up For Hooters — to walk 20 miles a day, three days in a row in the 3-Day event. To date I have had over 300 men and women join my team and we have raised $660,000 for Komen. We are the hiking boots on the ground in the war on breast cancer, so to speak. I do this so that if I get a recurrence, the research will be there to let my docs know what to do. I also walk for my little grandson. This is something I can do today — advocate for his future — so he never loses his wife, or his second grandmother — ME — to breast cancer. THAT is why I am here.”

Was I effective? Well, I didn’t get them to cry. But I did find out that on both sides of the isle there is broad support for research funding and breast cancer issues, and each of the four aides I met with had their own breast cancer story. Their Mom. Their aunt. Their partner. I feel encouraged about their votes.

After our meetings we delivered a dozen information packets to the House and Senate offices who had no constituents attend the summit. It dawned on me that we would have been so much more powerful had we had summit attendees from EVERY nook and cranny in the US — if EVERY house representative got a visit and every state senator heard our story. But some states had no one. Even my state, California, only had 13 of us from the entire state, yet we have 53 house representatives. We missed most of them!

That is where you come in, Mr. and Ms. 3-Day Walker! Consider coming next year. You are invited. Especially if you are from some podunk, off the beaten track location with a lonely representative who doesn’t get many visitors! They want to hear from you. From US. One thing I kept hearing is how much more impactful a volunteer constituent’s voice is over a paid lobbyist. They value us. They listen. Komen almost doubled the size of the Summit this year, to 250. Their goal is to double again for next year — to 500. We 3-Dayers can do it. And think about it. We have spent tons of time advocating for Komen each time we ask for a donation. We are experienced! We know how to make the ask!!!

I will be there next year. And I will come more prepared. I plan to gather stories from my team, and from my own experiences — stories that support the asks that Komen will decide upon. I hope you are there with me. You won’t regret it.

20 Reasons to Join the 3-Day in 2019

The reasons to join the 3-Day are endless. Truly! Everyone gains something different on this amazing journey, and everyone comes back year after year for their own reasons. If you need a bit more motivation to join our 3-Day family in 2019, we have a few all-encompassing reasons to #Commit3Days and join the 3-Day NOW!

(Hint: Make sure to read to the end for a special discount code 😊)

  1. Meeting new people: One of the best parts of the 3-Day is the “Pink Bubble” made up of every member of our 3-Day family. Even if you’re walking on your own, you will finish the weekend with scores of new friends.
  2. Outdoor camp: Glamping in pink tents. Sleeping under the stars. Being super close to to all your teammates. There is also so much to love about our outdoor camps in Seattle, Dallas/Fort Worth and San Diego! There’s really no wrong choice (except not joining at all).
  3. Hotel camp: Air conditioning. Charging plugs galore. Real beds and pillows and showers. There is so much to love about our new hotel camps in Michigan, Twin Cities, New England and Philadelphia! (New England 3-Day registration is closed, but you can still register as a 20-Mile walker!)
  4. Seeing all the sights: 60 miles is quite the distance. So, even if you’re walking in your own home city, chances are you’ll get to see some new and unique parts of your hometown on the 3-Day weekend.
  5. Tons of treats: You will be active and moving all 3-Day weekend-long, which makes it very important that we keep you hydrated and fueled. Pit stops, water stations, lunches and dinners are all full of delicious bites like Grahamwiches and the famous 3-Day Mac n’ Cheese.
  6. The 3-Day coaches: We must give a shout out to the people who make it happen. Your 3-Day coaches are here to encourage, advise, support and be there for you every step of your 3-Day journey. From the moment you sign up until you cross that finish line, they will be your champions.
  7. An excuse for shopping: You’re going to need some new gear to display on all those training walks, and especially on the 3-Day weekend! People go all out with their 3-Day outfits, rocking everything from feathered wings to our very own 3-Day T-Rex. You better start shopping now!
  8. Get moving: Many people have the goal to get more steps in, move more in their everyday lives or get in better shape. While we have walkers of all shapes, sizes, and ages, you can use the 3-Day to help fuel your next fitness goal.
  9. Finding new tunes: While you’re out moving and grooving away, you’re going to need some music to fuel your journey. The 3-Day has its own Spotify account to get you started on musical inspiration, but you can also make your own! You’ll be surprised how much good music will improve your mood. Just remember to keep it safe and don’t wear earphones on the 3-Day or our official training walks.
  10. Getting some quality time: If music isn’t your jam, don’t worry. The 3-Day is also a great chance to get quality time with the friends and family who are walking with you…or with yourself. Make sure to take some time on your walk to reflect. Check in with yourself and acknowledge what an amazing thing you’re doing.
  11. Testing your limits: It’s important to remember the whole journey, not just the final destination. This walk will test you emotionally and physically, but also give you such a feeling of accomplishment at the end.
  12. It’s tutu-friendly: And not just tutus! We also love wigs and bedazzled bras and team t-shirts and more! You will be smiling all weekend long thanks to all of the extra special flair. 😊
  13. For the gram: It seems that more and more people are doing things “for the gram” these days, and while getting a good photo shouldn’t be your sole motivation for joining the 3-Day, we can promise some epic photos for your social media feeds.
  14. To spice up your Bucket List: If the 3-Day isn’t on your bucket list yet, it should be! Not many people can say they’ve walked 60 miles in one weekend, after all.
  15. Re-connecting with nature: The 3-Day route will take you through all sorts of cool sights, including some amazing parks, trails and watersides. Don’t miss them! Our host cities are all unique and wonderful in their own special ways, so take in everything they have to offer.
  16. That feeling of accomplishment: There truly is no feeling like crossing that 60-mile finish line and knowing that your commitment has made a HUGE impact in the fight to end breast cancer. You have trained, fundraised, volunteered time and energy, and it all comes to a peak in that moment. There is nothing like it.
  17. Be inspired: As we said before, there is nothing like this experience. Hearing from our breast cancer survivor speakers, meeting those who have lost loved ones or been saved by Susan G. Komen-funded research; all these experiences will leave you feeling motivated and inspired.
  18. Make a difference: Since its founding in 1982, Susan G. Komen has funded more than $988M in research and more than $2.2 billion in education, screening and treatment. The net proceeds raised by the 3‑Day help Susan G. Komen build a world free of breast cancer through research, community, care and action.
  19. Join the family: Being a part of the 3-Day makes you a part of our family, and an integral part of the fight against breast cancer. You will become part of something that is larger than yourself and make a true difference in the world around you.
  20. You can do this! More than 500,000 participants have supported the breast cancer community, including those living with metastatic breast cancer, since the 3-Day began. You can be a part of all that! Yes, walking 60 miles is hard, but it’s not as hard as breast cancer. Come walk with us. You can do it.