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Soliciting Funding from Community Service Organizations


Many people in business are interested in helping young people prepare for the working world. So, if you haven't already, why not consider recruiting one of the service organizations in your community to sponsor your school's program.

Finding the Right Service Organization to Approach
If you aren't familiar with the different community service organizations in your community, contact your local Chamber of Commerce to get a list. They will have the names and phone numbers of the president and the program chairperson for each organization in your community.

Some of the organizations you should consider contacting include:

  • Altrusa
  • Lions Club
  • American Association of University Women
  • Rotary
  • Business and Professional Women
  • Soroptimist
  • Kiwanis
  • Zonta International

These organizations are made up of professional and career-oriented individuals who will probably be particularly interested in helping young people become ready for the work force.

Do some homework before you contact someone within the organization. Try to find out which organizations within your community are particularly interested in supporting either youth or education. Use your network of friends and professional acquaintances to research this information. If you have an advisory board, they will be helpful with this task.

Recruiting the Service Organization
Once you have determined which organization(s) would be most interested in becoming involved with your school's program, contact the program chair and offer to give a presentation at one of their meetings. For the organizations which have weekly meetings (usually at lunch), program chairs are constantly on the lookout for interesting presentations about the community. Your call will be most welcome.

Your Presentation
Once you have scheduled a presentation, plan and practice what you want to say. Be sure to ask the program chair how much time you have and be careful not to go over that limit. Leave time for questions. The following suggestions might be helpful as you plan your presentation:
  1. Tell success stories about students who have graduated. If you have graduates who like to speak in front of groups, you might bring them along to give a short presentation.

  2. Give the Startling Statement Quiz on page 201 of Career Choices to warm up the audience, or use the statistics on page 202 to support your presentation.

  3. The following pages of the Career Choices Instructor's and Counselor's Guide may have material, quotes and statistics you will want to incorporate into your presentation: Pages 3, 4, 7-9.

  4. If you have display material, supporting videos or articles, be sure to bring these along and set up a display in the back of the room.

  5. Be sure to take along at least one copy of Career Choices to pass around the audience while you are speaking. This will be a good example of what you are doing or the kind of program you would like to do.

Your Presentation: Asking for Support
Toward the end of your presentation, be sure to ask for support or assistance from the members. As their name implies, community service organizations are dedicated to giving service to the community. They organize primarily for that purpose and are usually looking for projects in the community that will make a difference. Working with students who need special attention to become productive citizens should have a high appeal for members.

What kinds of support can you ask for?



Speaker's Bureau

At the minimum, be sure to take a copy of pages 74-75 in the Instructor's Guide. Ask the audience to help you identify individuals who would be good guest speakers for your group. Pass the form around the room as you speak.

Shadowing Mentors
Also, have a number of copies of the Shadow Program Mentor Survey form from pages 180-181 of the Instructor's Guide with you. Ask for individuals to volunteer as mentors for your program. Be sure to add your name and address at the bottom of the form so people can fill it out later and send it back.



Director of Mentors
If you are looking for a Director of Mentors (see pages 178-182 of the Instructor's Guide) mention that fact and ask any interested individuals to see you after the meeting. There will probably be retired individuals in the audience who are interested in quality volunteer placement (activities where they see that they are making a difference) and who have good contacts in the business community.

Funding for Books
Most service organizations provide funding for worthy projects. Explain that with their support, each student could have their own copy of Career Choices instead of the Workbook and Portfolio. This would encourage the students to work more diligently. Or if funding is really tight at your school and they will purchase the main Career Choices textbook (non-consumable, to be reused each year) but need extra funding to purchase the consumable Workbook and Portfolio, ask for this funding.



Funding
Most community service organizations raise funds throughout the year for projects in the community. If, after your presentation, you feel there was a lot of interest in your program and the members support the concepts, contact the president of the organization and ask what their procedure is for requesting program funding.

Follow the procedure and suggest that the organization fund a copy of Career Choices for each participant. This is something "concrete" that the service organization can take pride in providing.

Once you receive funding for the books, design a sticker that says (for example):

[sticker example]

Affix it to each cover of Career Choices. Your local instant print shop can arrange for custom stickers.

Keeping Your Supporter Involved

Book Presentation Ceremony

You may want to ask representatives of your sponsoring community service organization to attend a presentation ceremony where each participant of your class is "presented" their own copy of the book. Consider even putting a ribbon around each book. When the students see that people care about them, they will work harder in the learning process.

When given their books, be sure to remind the students that this is a journal that they will want to keep along with their school annuals, family photo albums and keepsakes, because someday they will want to share it with their own teenager. After the ceremony, the service organization might sponsor a luncheon or ice cream social.


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