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Sandy Davis

Fair Trade Online Fundraising

Fair trade fundraising organizers are seeking online options to save time, stay organized and raise more money. We’re pleased to offer Equal Exchange products on the online platform created by FarmRaiser!

Mark Abbott, Co-Founder and CEO of FarmRaiser, created the platform after his children brought home school fundraisers selling junk-food products. Mark longed for an easy fundraiser offering healthier options, especially for kids, that would be successful. His answer is FarmRaiser, a tech company with a platform that connects communities with farmers, educates about food sourcing, and offers online organizational tools to make fundraising easier.

Now, you can raise money with Equal Exchange’s fairly traded, organic products on the FarmRaiser platform!

FarmRaiser’s technology powers your fair trade fundraiser.

  • Raise money and make a difference! Advocate for small-scale farmer co-ops by sharing free educational videos, classroom materials and other resources during your fair trade fundraiser.
  • Equal Exchange ships your entire FarmRaiser order to one location for your local distribution.

Tech ToolsImage shows two students learning about fair trade chocolate on their computer.

Fundraising tools on the platform. 
  • Your fundraiser gets its own shareable marketplace and mobile app. This makes it easy to text, email and post on social media.
  • A secure paywall lets you accept credit card payments quickly and safely. Therefore, you’ll have less cash to carry around and count!
    • You can also print paper forms for those who prefer to pay by cash or check.
  • Track progress in real time! During your campaign, the online dashboard shows how close you’re getting to your fundraising goal!
  • Supporters can add dollar donations on the platform so you can raise even more for your cause!
Your contact is FarmRaiser.
  • Connect with FarmRaiser here to create, organize and finalize your Equal Exchange fundraiser on their platform.
  • FarmRaiser handles your invoicing, not Equal Exchange. They’ll submit your final order for you and also provide a detailed summary of your fundraiser’s sales and profits.

    Highlights

Simple Set Up
  • Quick launch! Sign up here and get started.
  • Personalize your online profile using your group’s logo and fundraiser description.
Customize your fundraiser and your profit percentage.
  • Product Selection – You pick!
    • Choose the Equal Exchange products you want to offer. This is perfect for those who may want only gluten-free, vegan, or kosher products.
  • Percentage of Profit – You decide!
    • Need to raise 40%, 50% or more? Use FarmRaiser’s tech tools to set the percentage of profit for your fundraising products to get you to your goal.
 Image shows an Equal Exchange worker-owner getting product ready to ship in the warehouse. Full cases of product.
  • Equal Exchange products are rounded up to complete full cases. Therefore, fewer products can help you raise more money.
  • We ship our freshest products to you directly from our warehouse.
  • Any extra products that arrive are perfect as appreciation gifts or to continue raising money by selling after your campaign closes.
Easy Wrap-up
  • FarmRaiser helps you finalize your fundraiser and submits your order to us for you. They’ll handle your billing, not Equal Exchange.
  • The platform generates PDFs of easy-to-read customer receipts – organized by each participant – to simplify your distribution day.
  • Your dashboard stores all you need. You’ll get a quick start next time and easily contact past customer-supporters.
    • Added bonus: If you’re changing roles in your group, simply share your dashboard’s login information with the next organizers. They’ll have everything they need — no more passing of the Fundraising Binder! 

Image shows a rubber stamp of the FarmRaiser logo on a paper fundraising product distribution bag.

FarmRaiser can help you plan an Equal Exchange fundraiser on their platform. To get started, just fill out this form. If you have questions or want to learn more, contact them at info@farmraiser.com or 571.279.8873.

Equal Exchange’s Customer Service team is always available to answer questions about our products, our farmer partners and your order’s shipping details. Get in touch with us at communityorders@equalexchange.coop and 774.776.7366. 

Not sure which Equal Exchange fundraising program is best for your group? Contact fundraising@equalexchange.coop and we can help.

Thank you for supporting authentic fair trade and fundraising with Equal Exchange.

Cucumber Peppermint Iced Tea

Time to chill out! Cool down our already-cool Organic Peppermint Tea by infusing it with fresh mint and cucumber and serve it over ice!

 

A jug of tea with a cup and some cucumbers
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Mint and Cucumber Infused Peppermint Iced Tea

Extra minty and cool as a cucumber -- and naturally caffeine-free! Infused tea can remain in the refrigerator for several days.
Course Drinks
Keyword Cucumber, Iced Tea, Mint
Servings 5

Ingredients

Instructions

Preparation:

  1. Bring water to a boil and pour it into a pitcher
  2. Tie the strings of the tea bags together and add to the water
  3. Let it steep until the water cools to room temperature, then put it in the refrigerator to cool fully.
  4. 2-3 hours before serving, add half of the sliced cucumber and a few sprigs of mint to the tea in the pitcher.

To serve:

  1. Add ice to the pitcher (tea bags can remain or be removed)
  2. Pour into glasses
  3. Garnish each glass with a fresh cucumber slice or two and fresh mint.

 
 

Shop Organic Fair Trade Tea >>

See all our new iced tea recipes!

A Fundraising Tip with Excellent Taste

Fundraising with fairly traded, organic, and delicious products? Here’s an excellent tip to help you raise more money… let them taste it!

As the fundraising campaign organizer, it’s up to you to come through for your cause. You made sure your community knows precisely what your organization needs the money for and why you partnered with Equal Exchange to help raise it. Great work! Now, it’s time to boost your fundraising efforts by offering samples.

There are two different groups of people who have a stake in your fundraiser. Each plays a different yet important role in your campaign. Identify them, then give each what they need to raise the most possible.

Fundraising Participants

The first group is your team of organizers and fundraising participants — the people who are soliciting orders. They are the ones who sell to their sphere of contacts. Your participants need to be passionate about your cause or project. Their passion gets their friends and families excited. They need to be able to talk about what the funding means to them personally. It’s up to you to get them jazzed up to generate excitement.

Image shows a smiling man participating in an interactive art project while holding an Equal Exchange coffee cup.

Your team also needs to know – and love – what they’re offering. You, of course, share fair trade and organic information with your participating children and adults to let them know your fundraiser also supports small farmers. Giving them a taste of the delicious products they are offering will allow them to describe “delicious” in their own words and help boost their sales.Image shows supporters selecting products to purchase as they participate in your fundraising program.

Fundraising Supporters

The second group are the people purchasing the products to support the fundraiser. They are people your participants know — friends, family, and coworkers. They may buy an item or two during your fundraiser. Still, if you train your team to offer samples, such as a taste of decadent chocolate, or a sip of freshly brewed coffee, it’s likely to increase order sizes. Samples help you raise the most money possible throughout your campaign.

How to Order Samples For Your Equal Exchange Fundraiser

Browse the products that you want in your fundraiser and decide what you’d like to sample. Then, order a few products you’ll offer by the case at lower wholesale pricing online or by calling 774-776-7366.Image shows samples of Equal Exchange's fairly traded, organic coffee, chocolate and tea.

The purpose of product sampling is to raise more money. It costs approximately $30 for a case of 12 chocolate bars. You could sample just four of the bars, then sell the remaining eight at $4.00 each to pay for the full case. Then, start collecting orders – and cash – to place a final fundraising order.

Ask for help. 

You are fundraising, so you need money for your cause. Ordering products by the case before starting your fundraiser may be difficult, so consider reaching out to a few specific supporters and ask them for help with samples. Your email could look something like this:

Dear Supporter,

As you know, we’re kicking off our fair trade fundraiser soon. When people taste the delicious, organic products we’re offering, they’ll purchase more, and we’ll be able to reach our fundraising goal faster!

Would you be so kind as to order a few full cases of product to donate to us so we can use them for samples? You can keep some for yourself! Here’s what we need…

Then, make your wish list and include links to the Equal Exchange products you’ll offer in your fundraiser to make it easy for them to help. If you ask a few people to help, consider requesting they donate different products so you can sample a wider variety to help raise more money.

Ideas for Successful Sampling

Image shows how to sample an Equal Exchange chocolate bar for your fundraising program.

  • Use Chocolate Minis – Sampling made simple. One box of minis contains 150 individually wrapped pieces of chocolate.
  • Make a recipe using any product that is in your fundraiser. Need ideas? Check out our recipes.
  • Host a Hot Cocoa Bar.
  • Brew coffee or tea and share samples. 
  • Bring samples to a community event and start taking fundraising orders.

Fundraising with a Spring Theme

Fundraising with Equal Exchange’s fairly traded products is effective any time of year, but if you schedule your program around a special theme or holiday, you could get to your goal faster. Here’s how…

Planning a campaign around a seasonal theme gives you the power of suggestion. People automatically will view the products featured in your fair trade fundraiser as a gift-giving opportunity so will likely buy more and you can raise more. 

In addition, fundraisers with themes inherently provide something to talk about! For example, people can get excited for Mother’s Day or Earth Day. And, you can set a deadline around the calendar date so your supporters will get orders in to you in time.

To spread the word about your campaign, use social media, newsletters, your website, flyers and whatever works best to reach your group. And, click here to get fair trade resources to share with your community to educate them and inspire their participation. 

“Mother’s Day is a few weeks away! Our fair trade fundraiser ends Friday so order her perfect gift today!”

Pick a Theme for your next Fair Trade Fundraiser

Every calendar year starts off with plenty of themes to choose from. And, don’t overlook your organization’s special dates, such as an anniversary. Pick what works best for your group, then plan your schedule around it.

Need a few ideas to start off the next year with a fundraiser? Consider these themes:

  • Fair Trade Chocolate for Valentine’s Day
  • Small-farmer Products for 1st Day of Spring or Easter
  • Organic for Earth Day 
  • Delicious Gift Giving for Mother’s Day 

Image shows Equal Exchange Tea with text, "Small Farmer Teas for Spring or Easter"
Image shows female farmer picking coffee beans with text, "Organic for Earth Day"

Image shows Equal Exchange coffee with text, "Delicious Gifts for Mother's Day"

What theme has been successful for your fair trade fundraiser?

Equal Exchange fundraising organizers want to know! Share your fundraising experience with our special group on Facebook>>.

Get Social! Boost Fundraising With Social Media

Promoting your fundraising campaign is important. If supporters don’t know about it, they can’t participate. Use email and handouts to amplify your fundraiser, or take advantage of your organization’s website, newsletters, blog, and — best of all — social media accounts. We’re here to help! For this post, we’re going to focus on your organization’s Facebook page, but many of these tips can be applied to other forms of communication.

Download Graphics To Promote Your Fundaiser>>

You’re raising money for something important. We’re not all sales people and for some of us, reaching out for support can be uncomfortable; even a bit scary. What can help take this fear away, as with most things in life, is to simply make a plan. There are three phases to selling products in your fundraising campaign; a beginning, a middle, and an end. When broken down into sections, planning out what to post on Facebook and when to post it becomes much easier.

Facebook works best when you use short, direct posts and good images. Planning these in advance isn’t difficult, but it does require a little thought before starting your campaign. If you don’t map this out, you can easily forget, post haphazardly (people do notice!), or miss out on fundraising opportunities altogether just because people just don’t know.

Facebook posts should coincide with each phase of your campaign. Rotate messages to include just one or two these key basic points: Who, What, Why, Where, When, and How. First, customize this list to fit your organization’s needs:

  • Who: Your organization and the program that needs funding
  • What: An Equal Exchange Fundraising Campaign
  • Why: Why you selected Equal Exchange
  • Where: Where can people find you so they can participate
  • When: Stress important dates like the last day to place orders
  • How: How can people help?

Then, rotate Facebook posts about these points throughout your campaign to remind your supporters what you’re doing, how they can help, and when you need them to help.

We created graphics >> that you can use in various places on Facebook including your Cover Photo, Profile Pic and Event Cover Photo.

Feel free to use these anywhere online they fit. You can also choose pictures from Equal Exchange’s inspiring photo collection >> which includes farmer and product images. Just be sure to follow our easy usage guidelines >>.

Phase One – Introduce your Fundraising CampaignImage shows organic cacao farmers with text "Fundraiser Coming Soon" to support your fundraising campaign.

Your first post will overview your fundraiser so will likely be your longest post. (You can always link back to this post in the future to remind supporters of the most important details.) Your post could read something like this:

Hello friends!

As you know, we need to raise $X,XXX for ______________ so we can __________.

We’re partnering with Equal Exchange (tag EE’s Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/equalexchange/ ) and raising money with their fairly trade products to help us reach our goal while supporting small-scale farmers around the world!

Your participation is very important for us to reach our goal so please select from the products we’re offering for yourself and for gifts.

Our campaign dates are (start date) – (end date) so to help, connect with our team during these dates. (Please note: You must be local to participate). With your help, we know we’ll be able to continue our amazing work!

As always, thanks for your support!

-Your Name

Follow up with very short posts to inform people about the upcoming start date. This helps generate excitement. Remind them what you’re raising money for and how they will be able to participate (“We’ll be at the library Saturday from 11:00am-1:00pm to take your order! Stop by and help us reach our goal!”).

Phase Two – Fundraising During the CampaignImage shows an organic cacao farmer with text "Support our fundraiser" to support your fundraising campaign.

This is, obviously, the most important part of a fundraiser. Communicate your campaign’s progress and continue to let supporters know how they can participate. Be sure to thank them for their support so they feel appreciated. Remind them how much time they have left to be able to help you, and what they are supporting. People want you to succeed, so these kinds of posts help boost sales. Share pictures of your fundraising goal board and of the project or people you’re raising money for to keep supporters engaged.

Phase Three – Wrap up and Thank you

Image shows an organic tea farmer with text "Thank you for your support!" to support your fundraising campaign.

This phase is, sadly, the most forgotten with fundraising communications. It is important to let all involved know how much they helped your project, whether you reached your goal or not. Let them know when and where they can pick up their products. Sum things up with a recap of how much the money will help your organization and how their purchase also supported authentic fair trade.

No matter what method your group uses to inform your community about your product fundraiser, we hope these tips help you raise the most you can during your campaign! As always, feel free to reach out and network with other Equal Exchange Fundraising organizers in our special Facebook group >>.

Image shows farmer and Equal Exchange Worker-Owner toasting cups of coffee with text "Write your own success."

Fundraising DIY: Create a Goal Board

Image is of a student coloring in thermometer on a fundraising goal board.Rally your troops to create a fundraising goal board and watch those dollars come in!

Creating a goal board as a team is a show of solidarity. It gets your group excited about your fundraiser so they can see exactly what the money means to your organization.

In addition, by showing that thermometer rising during your campaign or events, you can motivate supporters to buy more and help you reach – or exceed – your goal. So be sure to take pictures and share them frequently throughout your campaign. This invites your community to become part of your fundraiser. In turn, they’re more likely to share your news and progress. The more they share, the more people you’ll reach and the more money you can raise!

To get started, use a thermometer graphic and customize a goal board for your cause. You can download a thermometer poster here and just print it  to get started. For fair trade graphics to add, you can also print out educational resources.

The next step is to start gathering other materials. For inspiration, look at the supply list below. Keep in mind that it’s best to customize the goal board to be about your organization and what you need funding for. You can include information about your mission, Equal Exchange’s mission and anything else that will motivate!

Suggested Supplies

  • Large firm, flat surface (cork board or foam board)Image is of supplies needed to build a fundraising goal board including paper, bulletin board, scissors, etc.
  • Construction paper or wrapping paper (enough to cover surface)
  • Stapler, tape, glue stick
  • Image of a thermometer (click to download ours)
  • Scissors
  • Markers
  • Images and text explaining what your fundraiser is for
    • Tip: Use the web, magazines, post cards, photographs, drawings, newspapers, brochures, etc.
  • Information about why you’re fundraising with Equal Exchange

Once you have your supplies together, be sure to have a specific dollar amount for your goal, what you’re raising money for (example: $3,000 for new equipment) and the dates of your fundraising campaign.

DIY: Build A Fundraising Goal BoardImage shows a fundraising goal board.

  1. Lay out the construction paper or wrapping paper to cover the flat surface. Once in place, secure.
    • Cork board – secure with an open stapler
    • Foam board – secure with tape or glue sticks
  2. Arrange your components on top of the covered surface (some may require trimming or coloring)
  3. When it all looks good, attach all the components about the fundraiser to the covered surface
  4. Encourage your team to write personal notes or include images of what the funding means to them
  5. Photograph the goal board and share with your participants and supporters
  6. Get updates from your fundraising participants frequently throughout campaign, so you can track the campaign’s progress on the goal board by filling in the thermometer.
  7. Repeat step 5 several times throughout your campaign.

What will your fundraising goal board look like?

We want to see! Share photos of the making of your goal board as well as your campaign’s progress with other Equal Exchange Fundraising Coordinators on Facebook. We look forward to watching you reach your goal!
Image shows a fundraiser's goal board.Image of a fundraiser's goal board.Image of a fundraiser's goal board..

Image of a fundraiser's goal board..

Image of a fundraiser's goal board..

Image of an Equal Exchange Fundraising Goal Board.


Good luck with your fair trade fundraiser!

Thank you for fundraising with Equal Exchange’s products. Remember, the more you raise, the more you’re supporting authentic fair trade.

Introduce Us to Your Fundraising Team

Picture is of a ACOPAGRO Co-op cacao farmer in Peru smiling and holding a cacao pod.
Cacao farmer Marta Zatalaya, a member of the ACOPAGRO Coop in Peru says, “Thanks!”

You’ve started something special — let’s continue doing great things together!

By partnering with Equal Exchange’s fundraising programs in the past, you not only raised money for the organization you care so much about, but you also supported small, organic farmer co-operatives around the world.

For this, we thank you!

It’s not always possible for you to continue volunteering at your beloved school or serving your non-profit in the same capacity forever. With over two decades in the nonprofit world, I personally understand how quickly information can fall off the radar. People rotate in and out. Projects get handed-off. Email addresses change. With this kind of disconnect, it’s no wonder so much time gets wasted as people re-create the wheel time and again. Your goal is to raise money for your group. When there’s a lot of turnover, that goal suffers.

To continue the amazing work you’ve started, we ask you to help keep us in touch with your team. Just invite members of your group to join the Equal Exchange community!

With just two steps, it’s so easy!

  1. Copy this web link: https://equalexchange.coop/ee-and-you/fundraising/signup
  2. Paste it into an email and send to your group’s organizers and ask them to fill out the form.

After they fill out the form, we’ll keep them in the loop on fair trade fundraising news. You’ll be giving the next coordinator a head start by telling them what works for your group. We’ll keep them informed with news and offer helpful fundraising tips so you can continue success. Receiving fundraising news will help them continue the great work you started! (To learn about Equal Exchange’s privacy policy, click here.)

No time? No worries. Just copy and paste the letter below and send off to your committee. Feel free to customize to suit your needs!

Hi,

We loved raising money offering organic, fairly traded products while also supporting authentic fair trade.

Equal Exchange sends out e-news occasionally about fundraising programs to help us raise more. I recommend you connect so we can continue our partnership. Just visit this link https://equalexchange.coop/ee-and-you/fundraising/signup and fill out the form.

Thanks!

Image of children holding chalk board that says, "Thank you for supporting us!"We look forward to remaining a special and meaningful part of your community so we can continue doing great things together!

A big thanks from all of us at Equal Exchange and our small farmer partners!