Sunday morning: Grassroots fundraising in action

By Jenna Lowenstein, Interactive Media Coordinator, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

All weekend, Power Summit participants have been looking forward to Sunday morning with a mix of excitement and anticipation. Sunday meant fundraising — calling friends and family members to ask them to support the work we all do back home. Some were looking forward to raising money for their organizations, but many were really concerned about what asking friends and family for money would feel like.

Power Summit participants were all raising funds for the organizations they support back home.

When this morning rolled around, participants had gone through a few trainings on grassroots fundraising, including yesterday’s test run, when most people made a few calls just to try it out. The nerves were still there, but it seemed most were ready to get down to business.

When participants arrived, they were grouped into teams based on the work they did back home. Each team was given a theme — Batman, Dora the Explorer, and Tinkerbell were among the team mascots — and a little last-minute training.

Members of Team Batman got down to dialing.

Then, at 10:30, everyone started dialing at the same time. It was quiet for a moment as everyone in the room waited for someone to pick up, then the conversations started and the energy in the room really swelled.

Part of Team Pokemon, raising funds to defend anti-discrimination laws in Bowling Green, Ohio.

For just about an hour, folks called through their lists of friend and family and had conversations about the work they were doing and why they thought it was important. Then, they gave their loved ones an opportunity to support their work financially.

The TF's Moof Mayeda tallied Team Spongebob's donations as they came in.

Not everyone we called said yes, of course, but almost every caller got at least one donation. One caller received nine!

At the end of the hour, the group had absolutely smashed through our goal of raising $20,000. With 1,246 dials and 408 live conversations, the callers raised $28, 478.50 for their organizations back home.

Smashing through our goal.

For more pictures from the fundraising phone bank check out our Facebook album from this morning here.