Events and Fundraisers

VEOs: 5 Tips to Grow Your Event

by Robb Drzewicki and Eric Bacyinski
October 14, 2014

Volunteer Event Organizers Robb Drzewicki and Eric Bacyinski aren’t content with raising the same amount for childhood cancer research year after year. Get the inside scoop on how their event at The Plymouth Roc grew from $12,000 raised in 2011 to $58,000 in 2014. Want a hint? There’s no magic involved — just old fashioned teamwork, social media savvy, creativity and loads of fun.


1. Work Together
There’s no one person that has all the necessary skills to pull off a large-scale event without help. Eric and I were put together because of our desire to be involved, but we honestly couldn’t be more different. Each of us has a different skill set and outlook. As long as our focus is on the mission, we can always compromise.

2. Focus on Fun
If you create a fun event, the money will follow. Every year, without fail, people come back and bring more friends along for the ride. Also, without fail, someone in the crowd decides that getting their head shaved for charity seems like a great idea and starts raising money on their own. Fun can be just as viral as an online cat video.

3. Social Media is a Must
The vast majority of our fundraising comes in the months before our event, and almost all of that is because of social media. Make sure shavees know raising money is as easy as casting a wide net online. Our biggest social media tip is to tag friends when sending thank you messages online, as it spreads the word to their entire friend lists. Also, look up which of your friends have the most contacts and ask for their help. Their social networks could be great tools.

Read about 5 ways to use Twitter and Instagram to increase your fundraising.

4. Use Existing Groups
Don’t beg a shavee to start a group. Instead, go to a pre-existing group and ask them to all join. This idea works great for sports teams, firefighters, police, and more. The “team” already exists and has built-in supporters. In other words, don’t just ask one firefighter to shave — ask an entire fire station to do it.

5. Pour on the Recognition
Everyone involved in the event is a hero for kids with cancer. Sponsors, donors, shavees, volunteers, and well-wishers deserve recognition for giving their time, money, and hair. It starts as a “thank you” on social media and continues with constant “thank yous” on event day. Our personal recognition of their sacrifice makes sure they leave with pride instead of just a t-shirt (but they get a shirt, too).

Get more tips for your event on our VEO tips page.

Ready to get involved? Start a head-shaving event of your own.

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