Beth was crying. She wanted to go to El Salvador with her youth group, but her family was having financial difficulties. In her mind (and by North American standards really), she was just as poor as the people she would be going to serve. She wept because there was "no possible way." Beth was told her group was going to raise the money as a team, and while that encouraged her, she was scared because she had no experience with raising money and felt pretty overwhelmed.
Mission trips are a world-changing work, openly stalking chances and opportunities to serve others … what you do matters, and you surely can’t let funds hold you back. Really, that’s why we are here today: myself, Linda Lindsay, and a little Jim Coonce. We want to help you raise the funds you need to go out there and make a difference.
Short-term mission trips do not just happen. We claim no specialized knowledge, but we have gone through the daunting process of raising funds for a short mission vision trip. We hope that these experiences will be of help to someone considering the possibility of going on one of these life-changing adventures themselves. Because we are going to share with you … *DRUMROLL PLEASE* …
HOW TO RAISE MONEY FOR A MISSION TRIP BY YOURSELF.
Some church backgrounds have Mission Boards who support missionaries and mission teams and offer mission trip grants. Many “screen” them before deciding as to whether they will give them funds or not. Awesome. Great actually! But the reality is ... most churches must raise their own money.
I have a fundraising handicap…. which is good and bad. I know a lot of people from being the daughter of a long-term missionary. There are so many people who have supported my mission trips financially because of this treasured relationship. When I tried to raise money for a trip to Cuba and received $750 BY EMAIL within 2 hours, and my trip was covered….just because I have known them "forever," they believe me, trust me, and I said I needed help.
THIS IS GOOD.
However, it is still a handicap. Because of this, I have not always been able to teach my teams how to fund-raise effectively. We have suffered the last hour stress of wondering whether or not we were going to be able to do something in our target mission besides getting off the plane, have a devotional with them, hug them, and get back on! 0_o
THIS ISN’T SO GOOD.
This teaching-fundraising handicap changed, however, after I asked accountant and missional Christian, Linda Lindsay, to coach me. Linda is fantastic at her job, and she has a passion for missions, plus she also carries the aura of “SHE WHO MUST BE OBEYED.” They listen to her; they follow her advice, and ... they get their money raised! SO. Linda and I got our heads together and put together some tips for YOU, missionary friend!
"For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." Matthew 6:21, THE MSG
A mission trip can unquestionably get you out of your comfort zone. Not merely is travelling elsewhere and encountering a new culture frequently overwhelming or daunting but fundraising itself can be quite a challenge. Mission trip fund-raising bracelets or fund-raising shirts, which are fun and awesome, don’t always do the trick. We hope these tips and tricks will be invaluable to you in your endeavours to support mission work. You might even be tempted to think, “Seriously? No way. I don't think I'll be able to do that."
YOU BEGIN FUNDRAISING
FOR YOUR MISSION TRIP
But you will be glad you DO THIS ONE THING BEFORE DOING ANYTHING ... and BEFORE looking through the best ways to raise money for short-term mission trips which I am offering for free to you below. That is, stop everything you are doing right now and PRAY. Looking back on many journeys, I marvel at how God provided for the needs of our trip, just when we needed it. There is no question that our fundraising efforts were hard work. Our teams have worked our tails off to accomplish raising mission money, but there is also no question that God was has been in the middle of it all! Logically, we haven't known whether we would be able to raise the needed funds, yet we still get goosebumps thinking about how miraculously the money has come in when we have needed it. God has always met our needs and the needs of the families we have had the opportunity to serve in various countries.
Meanwhile, moved by the extravagance of God in your lives, they’ll respond by praying for you in passionate intercession for whatever you need. Thank God for this gift, his gift. No language can praise it enough! II Corinthians 9;13-14, MSG
FOR THE MISSION FUNDS
2. Have patience! BE OKAY WITH THE FACT THAT MONEY IS WEIRD. Follow and understand the adage, "You can’t get blood from a turnip." Some years you may have to work harder than others and implement as many fund-raising activities as possible. Other years you may be surprised at the returns. Trust that the platform won't take the place of the mission, for spiritual preparation, and ... for the needed funds to be in place. I trust that you know the power of prayer, the heart of the Almighty who knows you better than you know yourself and I also believe that you will do it because that's just how you roll. ;-)
PREPARE TO COMMUNICATE
YOUR FUND RAISER
THE BEST WAY POSSIBLE
3. Not only should you be prepared as a missional individual, but you will also need to PREPARE to raise money. And here are a few helpful ways to raise these funds we will go over in detail such as mission trip publicity, types of sales for a mission trip, mission trip raffles, offering your body as hard labour, and other fund-raising ideas. We will cover mission trip support cards and grid-fundraising. But we will also discuss what will get you the most for your time: COMMUNICATION. Whether it is through online letters, a GoFundMe account, or snail mail, there is a way to communicate that makes all the difference in the world.
Before scrolling down to the BEST fund-raising tactic of all, this guy also has two really good tips I have never done but am definitely noting as a excellent possibilities. Maybe it will help you brainstorm as well!
But here is the best tip ever: I believe in it because I have done it for YEARS and it works better than any other method. The best way to raise money for missions is to, bear with me, WRITE A LETTER. I'm serious. An old school not-an-email signed personally and addressed by hand LETTER. REALLY!
Mission trip support letters are easy to write if you know what to include. Included in this little freebie list of ideas for fund-raising are notes to possible supporters. I'll give you some quick tips on what exactly to put in, what to avoid, and how to share your mission trip support letter with the right people.
See, when you compose a support letter, you’re doing much more than just asking for prayer and cash – you’re inviting someone to share in your trip. While these supporters won’t be hopping on the plane with you, they will be filling the indispensable role of providing support in your mission trip adventures. Keep this in mind as you do the fund-raising activities (listed here) or communicate with your people (guidance here).
Okay. So. We are almost done here, but I cannot leave without a “Truthiness Alert”: It is extremely easy to forget the attachment to a wireless fundraiser Facebook message in a GoFundMe, but there’s something significant and meaningful about getting a support letter IN THE MAIL. When you place it in an envelope, you can even include a separate picture of yourself (possibly on a previous trip) asking for prayer during your upcoming trip. You'll probably wind up on someone’s fridge so that they can pray for you during your life-changing adventure.
And HERE is the perfect guide to make this happen for you. It is my personal support, my gift to you, and the drumroll I roll out for you for your trip. And feel free to share any fund-raising experiences in the comments below. NOW, GO. I believe in you. Download this free guide or shoot me a message and I’m here when you need me or have any questions. YOU CAN DO THIS.
And so could Beth. Remember her? She is now planning her fourth mission trip with her youth group. And she isn’t scared about mission trip money at all. Beth knows what to do and she is fortified with patience and prayer.
These methods are so easy, too! Did I mention that? Let’s make it happen together today, okay?