Lauren Horn and Sarah Matthews all glammed up for the funraiser

By Sarah Matthews and Lauren Horn

Sarah and Lauren, here! We’re best friends and recent grads in Boston, MA, and we just finished our second annual fundraising party for She’s the First. This year, we held the fundraiser, Boston Gives Back, to raise money to sponsor girls through Project Education Sudan. Between the event and online donations, we’ve already raised over $1,600, sponsoring four girls and more than doubling the funds we raised last year.

Our She’s the First fundraiser party last year raised over $700 to sponsor girls at the Haiti Outreach Project. We used a successful formula: Sarah’s apartment, Trader Joe’s wine and snacks, a step and repeat backdrop, mini (tie-dye!) cupcakes and lots of friends. We did the same things this year, but added some fun twists, enabling us to double what we raised last year.

Drool-worthy mini tie-dyed cupcakes!

We realized that there were a lot of people who wanted to support our cause, but couldn’t actually make it to the event. We decided to set up a Causevox page which linked to the She’s the First paypal so that anyone could donate directly to our event. It only took a few minutes to set up – we added text and links, uploaded a YouTube video of our plea for help and created a background with our event logo (created by our friend Natasha, who’s an amazing graphic designer)! We’ve been using the Causevox page to post on Twitter and Facebook in order to build awareness of the fundraiser and the cause. It’s a great way to extend our reach beyond just our friends and family to others who may be interested in supporting She’s the First.

Raffles were held for amazing prizes from local Boston restaurants and bars

One of the best additions to this year’s event were gift card donations from six local businesses which we raffled off. Some serendipitous tweeting with Naked Pizza Boston led them to ask us if they could help. From then on, we started asking other local businesses for donations via Twitter. This led to six amazing Boston bars and restaurants (including a food truck that was featured on the Food Network’s Great Food Truck Race!), promising lots of Twitter and Facebook love. The raffles were a huge hit at the fundraiser, with many attendees donating at least $20 for two arm-lengths of raffle tickets. It goes to show how useful and powerful social media is for bringing attention to amazing causes!

Want to help us reach our goal of sponsoring five girls? We’re almost there — donate online!