Fundraising Tips and Tools
Everyone has a story. And for animal lovers, that story likely includes a pet (or two!) that has made a positive and profound impact on your life. Let that be your guide as you fundraise for the 2023 Heart & Sole Walk for Animals. Every dollar you raise goes directly toward creating happier, healthier lives for animals. Fundraising comes easily when you do it from the heart. Be creative and make it personal. And remember, you’re working hard for a wonderful cause — to help animals in need.
We know that asking for donations can feel uncomfortable for some, but you don't need to be a fundraising expert to raise money! If you're still nervous, just remember: It's not a selfish ask — you're trying to help a good cause! The worst they can do is say "no" (and that's okay).
Use the resources from our Fundraising Toolkit below to get started. If you need support with your fundraising, you can always reach the Heart & Sole Support Team at email@example.com. Take a look at the tips provided in this toolkit to get started today!
Thank you for supporting the Potter League, and happy fundraising!
Digital Fundraising Toolkit
Social Media Hashtag
Share your photos and videos with us, and be sure to tag Potter League on your Twitter (@potterleague), Instagram (@potterleague), and Facebook posts. Use #heartandsole2023 so we can see all your posts. Be sure to include a photo of your pet or one of our shareable graphics below. Note if you click on any of the graphics below, you can download full-size images.
Facebook Cover Photo
General Social Media Graphics
Impact image for general post
Impact image for Facebook/Instagram stories
Why support HAS Walk image for general social post
Sample text for social posts
Use the posts below as inspiration for fundraising. Fill in the blanks provided or edit them to fit your fundraising style.
Post 1: Have you heard? I’m #WalkingToSaveLives! I can’t wait to participate in Potter League for Animals’s Heart & Sole Walk for Animals. Please consider making a donation to my page to help support a cause that is near and dear to my heart today. [Insert a link to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser.] #HeartandSole2023
Post 2: Every year, thousands of animals find the care they need at Potter League for Animals until they’re adopted by loving families. That’s thousands of animals who, without support from the PLFA community, may have never found their new best friends!
In honor of [insert pet’s name] and the second chances PLFA provides, I’m supporting the 34th annual Heart & Sole Walk for Animals – will you help me? Together, we can help animals find their new best friends. Donate today! [Insert a link to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser.] #HeartandSole2023
Post 3: This year I am supporting the 34th annual Heart & Sole Walk for Animals, and it's got me thinking: What would you forego, just for one day, to help change an animal’s life?
- A takeout meal for lunch ($10), to help vaccinate an animal against life-threatening illnesses.
- A new pair of sweatpants ($25), to provide the materials needed for a tumor removal surgery to help an animal fight cancer.
- A cozy blanket ($50), to provide training treats for 50 animals.
- Noise-canceling headphones ($100), you’ll ensure two animals receive the emergency surgery needed to save their life.
Who knew something as small as eating a meal made at home could have such a big impact on animals in need! The animals at the Potter League are counting on us - will you please help by supporting my Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser? Together, we can make a difference for so many animals! [Insert a link to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser.] #HeartandSole2023
Post 4: Every year, thousands of animals find the shelter, medical attention, and care they need at Potter League for Animals until they’re adopted by loving families. Each one has the potential to be someone’s best friend, just like [insert pet’s name], which is why I’m supporting the Heart & Sole Walk for Animals. For every donation, I’ll send you a picture of [insert pet’s name] so he/she can brighten your day as well. Donate today to help animals! [Insert a link to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser.] #HeartandSole2023
Post 5: Animals have played a huge role in my life, and supporting animals in need has always made me feel like a hero. Right now, so many people in the world are still struggling, but we all still have opportunities every day to make a difference. Will you please help me by supporting my Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser? You can be their hero — and mine. [Insert a link to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser.]
Post 6: Help me help homeless animals. I’ll be walking to benefit the @potterleague #HeartandSole2023.Your donation is lifesaving for my furry friends. [Insert a link to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser.]
Post 6: I’m joining Heart & Sole Walk for Animals @potterleague! Help homeless animals have a warm bed and loving care this winter and donate to my fundraising page. [Insert a link to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraiser.] #HeartandSole2023
Post 7: I'm fundraising to help animals at @Potter League for Animals! Together, we can help fight animal cruelty, save injured pets, and find loving homes for thousands of shelter pets. Please donate today! Any amount can save a life. [INSERT YOUR FUNDRAISING LINK] #HeartandSole2023
Set up Your Page
When you register for the Heart & Sole Walk you will have access to your own fundraising page. Start by adding a photo that you like and share why you are participating in the Walk. From your fundraising page you can set your fundraising goal, share your story, create a Facebook fundraiser, and so much more!
Donate to Yourself
It might seem strange to donate to your own fundraising page but making a self-donation shows your dedication to the cause. Even a small contribution makes a difference!
Make it a Team Effort
Making a bigger impact is EASY! Grab your friends, family and co-workers and invite them to join in on the fun! After you create your online fundraising page, then create a team and start inviting your team members. Set a goal and aim high. Be sure the team captain registers first and then invites others to join.
Ask for Donations
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask! To get started, make a list of people to ask for support, such as family, friends, neighbors, or coworkers. Although asking for support in person is more personal, emails are also very effective. Send an email to all of your contacts, you may be surprised by who wants to support you!
Whether using the email tools in your Fundraising Dashboard or your personal email account, sending emails to your friends, family, and coworkers is a great way to get your message out. Share your story and include the link to your personal fundraising page if you’re fundraising online. Don’t be afraid to follow up if people don’t respond! Send an email to all of your contacts, you may be surprised by who wants to support you! A mass email definitely works, but individual emails will really stand out.
Share Where the Money Goes
Tell your friends and family what their donations can provide and they’ll be more likely to help.
- $25 will provide one day of food & shelter for one animal
- $50 will provide five Rabies vaccines
- $100 will provide seven microchips
- $250 will provide one spay/neuter surgery
- $500 will provide dental care for one animal.
- $1,000 or more will provide lifesaving medical care for the most distressed animals
Set up a Facebook Fundraiser
Want to collect donations directly through Facebook? You can set up a Facebook fundraiser that feeds directly to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fundraising page! Check out the FAQs for setting up your Facebook Fundraising page.
Get More Social!
Share your participation on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or even LinkedIn. Tell your followers why you are participating, make it personal, and link it back to your fundraising page to make it easy for them to support you. Use the hashtag #HeartandSoleWalk2023 and tag @potterleague to be reposted from Potter League for Animals.
Download and share the tools that Potter League has created to share your participation on social media, including walk signs, event flyer, digital brochure, & Facebook Cover photo. Posting regular updates about your progress for your friends and family will ultimately encourage even more donations.
Ask a Few More Times
The second or third time is the charm! Life gets in the way sometimes, and a friendly reminder can be key. Make sure to provide updates on your fundraising goal so that people can see how close you are. (Don’t forget there are prizes on the line.) Your family and friends want to support you - so don’t give up!
A personal letter always goes a long way; share your message about why you are walking!
Say Thank You
However you secure a donation, do not forget to thank the donor. You can do so in a simple email, handwritten card, or phone conversation. You can also publicly thank them by celebrating their donation by tagging them in a post about your current fundraising successes. Remember, caring for thousands of animals this year would not be possible without generous donors and of course - YOU!
More Ideas to Put the Fun in Fundraising!
Set your fundraising goal. Give yourself something to aim for. Many people who set a goal raise more than they thought they would!
Start a team. Ask your animal-loving friends, family, and coworkers to join you in supporting Potter League for Animals & the Heart & Sole Walk for Animals.
Donate your birthday or anniversary. Have a birthday or anniversary coming up? Or just want to honor a special pet in your life? Ask your family and friends to donate in lieu of purchasing a gift! (Set it up through the Potter League for Animals page on Facebook to make it easy.)
Ask about employer matching gifts. Many companies match their employees’ donations. Ask donors if their company will match their gift, raising twice the amount for animals in need. If your or their company has this program available, simply request a matching gift form from the employer and email it to the attention of Susan Ryan at SusanR@potterleague.org. We’ll take care of the rest!
Spare change jar. Ask your place of employment to put out a change jar for people to drop in their spare change as they pass by.
Host a Virtual Fundraising Night. Gather your friends and family for a virtual event and ask them to support your cause. Host a virtual wine tasting night, virtual cooking class, or set up a night with a restaurant to support you with a portion of the proceeds.
Pet Your Personal Talents/Skills to Use. Set a donation increment and when someone donates at or above that level (e.g. $500); you’ll provide an in-kind service. A few examples: If you’re a great photographer, offer to take pictures of their pet or family. Offer to walk their dog for a week or clean up their backyard so they don’t have to pay for a pet cleanup service.
Advertise. Put up our posters in break rooms, local businesses, etc. (Download them from our website.)
Prize drawing. Request a $10 donation from your coworkers in exchange for being entered into a drawing for gift certificates, prime parking spaces, or tickets to shows or sporting events.
Host a jeans/casual day. An extra “jeans day” is certainly worth a couple of bucks! Offer employees the opportunity for an extra casual day in exchange for a donation.
Food/beverage sale. Set up a table at work and sell cookies, donuts, popcorn, muffins, pizza, ice cream, or smoothies. Whip up a delicious treat for your colleagues and clients!
Lunch-in. Encourage employees to bring lunch for a week (or see if your company will supply food) and donate the savings to your Heart & Sole Virtual Walk/Run for Animals fund.
Candy grams. It’s a sweet idea for a sweet cause. Sell candy grams to coworkers as a way for them to show their appreciation for one another.
Used DVD/Book sale. Pull your old DVDs and books off the shelf and put them to good use! Ask your friends, family and neighbors to donate books they no longer want and set up a weekend book sale in your front yard, or get co-workers involved and host it at work!
Create friendly competition. Motivate your crew! Offer a prize to your team’s top fundraisers to inspire each walker to contribute even more to your team total.
Dine to Be Kind. Ask your favorite restaurants or food trucks if they can feature a promotion or feature certain menu items that are the “Pick of the Litter” or host a “Pint for Paws”, “Pasta for Paws”, or a “Yappy Hour” promoting a specialty beer (or food item) with a % of sales to the animals.
Karaoke Night. Spend a Friday night at a karaoke bar and sing for pledges!
Host a fundraising house party. A sure-fire way to raise money! Collect donations and entertain at the same time. Create a theme (like a costume party) and have fun!
Garage sale/Yard Sale. Fall Cleaning? Gather up all of that extra stuff collecting dust in the basement and attic—and ask your friends and family to do the same—then pick a Saturday or Sunday to host a garage sale! Make a sign explaining all proceeds will go to help homeless pets, and have a donation jar available.
Pennies for Paws. Decorate a shoe box with puppies and kittens, and create a sign encouraging co-workers/classmates to donate their spare change to help homeless pets. Leave the box in a high-traffic area at work.
“Round Up for Rover”. Your customers can round up their receipts to help the animals.
Lunch-in. Encourage employees to bring lunch for a week (or see if your company will supply food) and donate the savings to your Heart & Sole Walk for Animals fund.
Gym. Ask your gym to leave a pledge jar at the front desk.
Doctor/Veterinarian. Ask them to write you a check instead of the other way around!
Host a scavenger hunt. Charge a fee to enter and get great prizes donated for the winner.
Game/Poker Night. Get your friends together and host a game/poker night at your place or a local brewery.
Email Signature. Add the URL for your fundraising page to your email signature.
Get Piggy with it! Give out “piggy banks” and ask people to save their change for a month.
Get competitive. Start a little competition. Pick a nearby business, another department at your company or another club and set your team’s goal up against theirs! You can compete against the other team to raise the most money or recruit the most members.
Matching Gift Programs. Does your company offer matching gifts? If you’re not sure, ask!
Ask, Ask, and Ask again! People can only make a donation if you give them the opportunity. Don’t be shy about asking more than once. People need to be reminded.
Stay Focused. Remind yourself of why you are participating in the event, and how the money you will raise will help animals in need.
Take the 10 Days, 10 Ways Challenge
Day 1: Show your commitment! Start by making your own donation of $25, $50, or more. Set up your personal fundraising page and unlock fundraising tools that will help you get the word out.
Day 2: Ask two family members for $25 each.
Day 3: Ask a business you frequent to donate $25.
Day 4: Ask five coworkers to sponsor you for $20 each.
Day 5: Ask your boss for a company contribution of $100.
Day 6: Ask five people you know from your extracurricular activities, such as sports, book club, or your child’s activities, to donate $10 each.
Day 7: Ask five friends to donate $20 each.
Day 8: Turn it around! Ask someone who has asked you to support their cause to support you with $25.
Day 9: Ask your company if they offer matching gifts.
Day 10: Activate your social media networks! Once you get the word out, you’ll be surprised at the individuals who will support you — a high school friend, a college roommate, a former coworker. Give everyone you know a chance to say “yes!”