Fundraising "Mooves" Beyond Bakesales

(NewsUSA)- Fundraisers usually mean cookie boxes, wrapping paper and bakesales, but supporting a cause doesn't have to mean door-to-door drudgery.
Many organizations seek to make fundraising fun. From bracelets for cancer research to donation dinner parties, good causes are getting more creative. One nonprofit organization, Heifer International, proves especially innovative.
Heifer International, which has fought hunger by bringing sustainable farming and livestock to rural families since 1944, was an early leader in Internet fundraising. The nonprofit created an online gift registry, which works like any online store catalog, except that users buy cows and chickens instead of towels and toasters.
Now, in creating its Team Heifer fundraising tool, Heifer International embraces the Internet's interactive potential.
Team leaders create their own fundraising ideas, then build personal Team Heifer web sites to raise online donations. Teams can use their sites to post pictures, send "thank you" notes and track their results. All donations use a secure network to transfer funds. Teams can reach entire online address books by pushing one button, making outreach a breeze.
To encourage friendly competition, Heifer International's web site tracks donations and ranks its top fundraising teams. Because each team creates its own fundraisers, ideas prove endlessly creative. For example:
- Rob Bean of Wyoming, an avid canoe paddler, created "The Big Moo Canoe Team," which paddled 250 miles down the North Platt River in three days.
- Charlotte McGowan started a team, "Coast to Coast," which bicycled from Carlsbad, Calif., to St. Simon's Island, Ga, raising $5,000.
- One group, "Team Freefall -; Skydiving to End Hunger," jumped from a plane flying at 12,000 feet to raise $3,210.
For more information or to start your own Team Heifer, visit or call 800-696-1918.