Fundraising wasn't just a career for me. It was a way of survival.
2009: FAMILY AND FUNDRAISING
I got married and two years into our marriage we found out that we were about to have a baby. My wife and I shared the conviction that we wanted our children to have a parent home with them growing up and my wife shared that she wanted to stay home with our kids.
That was when the hard truth hit me:
The job that I was currently working would not be able to provide for a one-income family.
This is where my fundraising journey began.
2011: A NEW VENTURE
I had a good friend who had started a non-profit and half-jokingly said to me one day, "Dane you should come work for us, but we can't pay you so you would need to fundraise to work here."
Well, even though it was stated as a joke, I took it at face value and ran with this opportunity. I was so passionate about this work that I knew the effort to fundraise would be worth it.
I began to research, meet with people, and got to know everything that there was about fundraising. I knew that I only had about 9 months to get fully funded to support my family. The clock was ticking.
Over the course of nine months, I was able to raise 80% of the support needed and had enough for my family to live. That being said, I quickly learned that in fundraising you always have to be fundraising.
Life happens, people drop off, and you are always needing to bring in new supporters and say goodbye to old ones, but, for 4 years, I maintained a healthy salary for my family.
2016: FUNDRAISING FOR SURVIVAL
It felt like the key to our new home was barely in my hand when my wife told me that we were pregnant with our third child.
At our 19-week-appointment, we went in for our ultrasound to find out the gender of our child and were told four words that no parents wants to hear: "your child has spina bifida."
We were shocked and heartbroken. Through a few relationships, we came across a new procedure to help prevent further complications caused by the birth defect, but it would cost a lot of money and would require us to move across the country.
I knew what was before me.
We would have to fundraise to help pay for the cost of living in this new city and for the house we had just bought back home.
Long story short: over the course of three weeks, we had raised more than $30K.
Our daughter is doing well. The surgery was a success. The doctors believe she will be able to live a healthy life, given her condition, and I still work for the non-profit I fundraised for in the very beginning.
Fundraising wasn't just a career for me, it was a way of survival.
Through all my collective experience in fundraising, I have decided to share my knowledge of fundraising and start coaching others who find themselves in similar situations.
I want to help you raise the funds that you need to succeed in your life, non-profit, or business. Click here to learn more.
Do you have a survival story of your own? Share in the comment section below.