With a little bit of research and a lot of effort we gave that a try with Finally Family Homes' "A Hope And A Future" campaign.
May 15th 2019, our crowdfunding campaign launched on https://www.gofundme.com/HopeAndAFuture to open up a home for foster youth who are leaving the system with no family, home, or resources. We requested friends across social media to help us spread the word with the hashtag #AHopeAndAFuture.
On Twitter, you need a hashtag to be used 500 times in one hour to start to trend. Your best bet turns out to be getting that hashtag going between 12 am and 6 am.
Scheduling Tweets to go out within that time frame, and especially withing a specific hour can be helpful.
This article recommends starting a Twitter Party (sometimes also called a Tweet chat). This means creating a public conversation around a particular hashtag.
Hashtags. They can be helpful on all the big hitters - Instagram, Twitter, and even Facebook. But how do you get a hashtag to trend - or even to become popular? How do you use it to help grow awareness for your brand or cause?
We have a plan! A multi-phased, multi-faceted, holistic plan. And part one, we’re building hope and calling it "A Hope And a Future." May is Foster Care Awareness Month and we are launching phase one! In this phase of our plan, we are doing what we believe to be the most dire and important work first – building hope through connection and stability.
If you'd like to join us in providing for aging out foster youth, go to https://www.gofundme.com/HopeAndAFuture
We are extra blessed to have found a matching donor! So you can double the impact of your donations RIGHT NOW!
It is said that the teen years are the most hopeless for foster youth. At Finally Family Homes, we believe the most important work is restoring hope to aging out foster youth.
We're in the market right now for what we think will be a perfect transitional home for our ministry. Our current plan (which has evolved, if you have heard it before), is to personally buy a property when it becomes available. We wanted the nonprofit to own the property so that it could truly belong to the kids in perpetuity, but our nonprofit doesn't have a long credit history, stable income, and many of the other things required to get a home loan.
In an ideal world, the property would be divisible or two separate properties so we could donate the transitional house and land to Finally Family Homes. We're still looking to how that can be done and of course it will also depend on what kind of property situation we end up with.
We also hope to have a big garage or barn - not required, but ideal so that we can host big holiday gatherings and dinners as the youth return over the years and potentially bring their own families or other friends who don't have somewhere to go for a holiday. If we can't find that we'll consider building or renting out places, as offering ongoing, long-term connection is essential to our unique mission.
Why have a separate house?
The kids we are taking in will be 18+. The house rules and level of independence that is appropriate for that age group is a far cry from what's appropriate for our personal household with young children and an infant. Having a place with similar aged youth will give them more freedom and the college-like living experience that's much more appealing than living with a family who needs the house quiet at 8:30pm.
Why be on the same property?
While the youth are 18+, typically their development is lagging. "Adulting" often requires doing risky things like using knives, cooking, driving, and other things foster parents may not be quick to allow in an effort to keep the youth safe while in their care. Not only this, but going into foster care is traumatic, often arresting social-emotional development. Regardless, most kids from any background today still have some level of oversight - like a resident adviser at college.
We want to be available in an instant, day or night as needed, and want to do life alongside the former foster youth, inviting them to be part of our family.
3 Things We Love About Facebook Fundraisers
1. They're easy to set up. If you've got a Facebook account, Facebook will walk you through it. They create the page & provide easy ways to donate and connect to information about the organization. You just pick out a favorite photo, a goal amount, and what you want to say, if anything, about why are doing it.
2. They create awareness. Most people aren't aware what "aging out" is, much less all the sad statistics surrounding it. Finally Family Homes is pretty new and small, so they probably haven't heard of us either. Even if they don't donate, a fundraiser is an easy way to help your Facebook friends learn that the problem exists, that it is something you care about, and that what can be done to help solve it.
3. We get 100% of the donation. Facebook charges no fees, not even credit card processing fees. That something we can't even come by on our own.
3 Things We Don't Love About Facebook Fundraisers
1. We can't always say Thank You. Facebook doesn't share with us who donated or how much. So we are unable to follow up with a thank you. If someone from our organization is invited we can see those donors who choose to share that they gave, but not how much they gave.
2. They're not advertised for you. Unless you invite your friends, there's no guarantee they'll ever see that you are hosting a fundraiser.
3. It's less personal. Because we don't receive donor info, we can't follow up and let them know how their donation was used or continue a relationship with them.
Nevertheless, we believe the benefits outweigh the costs. And we greatly appreciate your efforts to multiply your support to help aging out foster kids at risk of homelessness and human trafficking.
How to Create a Facebook Fundraiser (From your Desktop)
Tip: If you're planning on doing it for your birthday, we recommend setting up the fundraiser to start a week before so everyone has time to see it before your birthday.
If you'd like to get started now, here's the link to create a fundraiser for Finally Family Homes.
Hi, I'm Christina Dronen, co-founder of Finally Family Homes. On this blog we focus on helping caregivers & teens learn what they need to be successful, thriving, independent adults with a little fun mixed in.