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"How can I afford to put this idea into action?"
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"How can I afford to put this idea into action?"

Emily MurraySometimes wonderful opportunities present themselves. Unfortunately, a lack of funds could impede the path to a life-changing experience. Emily Murray, a Correspondent from Australia, provides various avenues young people can explore to afford their dreams.

So, you’ve found an incredible opportunity – but how are you going to afford it? Don’t panic! There are many resources to tap into in order to make your dream a reality.

Fundraising Ideas

1. Scholarships and Grants


Does your local council or state government offer scholarships to young people chasing their dreams? For example, young Canberrans can apply for the Youth InterACT Scholarships.

2. Donations from your Community


Write a letter, explain why you are seeking donations, what the opportunity is and why it’s important and ask if they’re able to make a donation towards the cause. You could ask your:
• Rotary Club, Zonta Club, Apex Club, Lions Club, or RSL Club
• State, territory or Member of Parliament
• School or university
• Local supermarket (IGA regularly donates to community causes)

3. Crowdfunding


You could create a crowdfunding campaign at StartSomeGood or Pozible. StartSomeGood fundraises for various social projects, while Pozible focuses on fundraising for creative projects.
These crowdfunding websites let your friends and family pledge money to help you achieve your goal. You can make a video explaining why you’re asking for money and name simple gifts to reward your donors.
Crowdfunding campaigns often raise around $5 000, and have even raised over $100 000!

4. Fundraising Events


Friends and family could pay to attend your art exhibition, dance, concert, trivia night, fancy dinner, auction, talent night, or even a murder mystery party! You could raffle or auction prizes donated by local businesses.

Extra Tips
1. Raise Awareness


You could write to your local newspaper or radio station. They might want to interview you about the opportunity, the reasons for raising money and how the community can help and donate. Getting the word out can increase the reach of other fundraising plans.

2. Work in Groups


Fundraising efforts are usually more effective when done as a group. If you’re raising money for a soccer trip, get all your teammates together and plan a group strategy, divide the tasks and keep each other accountable.

3. Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket


Don’t just focus on one idea, because it might not work! Instead, try out a range of fundraising ideas. Think of the best way to approach individual donors; don’t treat all potential donors the same.

4. In-Kind Donations


If you’re running a raffle, auction or crowdfunding campaign, consider approaching local businesses and community groups for in-kind donations (goods or services).

For example, if you work at a jewellery store, ask the manager could donate an inexpensive piece of jewellery to as a prize. If you volunteer with a first-aid group, ask your coordinator if they could donate a first aid course.
The local pizza store might be willing to sell pizzas at cost price, or you might be in luck when asking a new business for an in-kind donation since new businesses are often keen to promote themselves in the community.

5. In Return


Donations are a two-way relationship. It’s nice to offer your donors something in return. You could visit them once the opportunity is over to tell them about your experience, publicly thank them, or even wear clothing with their logo on it, among other methods. And always, always remember to say thank you!

(This list first appeared at www.rise.org.au)
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Emily Murray is a graduate of the School for Social Entrepreneurs and an Arts/Law (Honours) student at the Australian National University. Emily is the founder and CEO of Rise, a website that advertises opportunities for young people.
– See more at: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org/2013/05/24/why-young-people-are-the-best-change-makers/#sthash.VmBJP6cG.dpuf

photo credit: Dominic’s pics via photopin cc

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Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth Youth Programme. Articles are published in a spirit of dialogue, respect and understanding. If you disagree, why not submit a response?

To learn more about becoming a Commonwealth Correspondent please visit: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org/submit-articles/commonwealthcorrespondents/

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