RST Amplify Austin 2021 Fundraiser Toolkit

Amplify Austin FUNDRAISER TOOLKIT 2021

Contents T A B L E O F 2 WHO I S R S T AND WHO DO WE S E RVE ? 1 3 WHY F UNDRA I S E FOR R S T DUR I NG AMP L I F Y AUS T I N ? HOW DO WE S E RVE ?

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AR EAS OF GR EAT E S T NE ED & HOW YOUR COMMUN I T Y CAN HE L P ( FA I TH COMMUN I T I E S & BUS I NE S S E S ) MANAG I NG AND CR EAT I NG YOUR AMP L I F Y AUS T I N F UNDRA I S I NG PAGE

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SOC I A L MED I A T I P S , SAMP L E POS T S AND SAMP L E EMA I L

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F U N D R A I S I N G E V E N T I D E A S

WHY FUNDRAISE FOR RST THROUGH AMPLIFY AUSTIN?

Amplify Austin is an annual, community-wide day of online giving. The 24-hour period provides an easy and fun way for our entire community to give together while helping their favorite nonprofits. Using Peer-to-Peer fundraising allows partners like you to spread the word about Amplify Austin by talking about our cause and engaging your community, helping raise even more donations for Refugee Services of Texas! Since 2013, individual fundraisers who shared their fundraising pages across multiple social media platforms were directly responsible for one-third of the $57.3 million raised for nonprofits through Amplify Austin. Though the world has changed over the last year through the pandemic in how we’re able to physically serve RST clients, fundraising is still the greatest way you can help make a direct impact on the lives of refugees, asylees and survivors of trafficking across Texas!

Our network without fundraisers

Our network with fundraisers

D= Donors F= Fundraisers

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Guided by the principles of human compassion and dignity, Refugee Services of Texas welcomes refugees, asylees, survivors of trafficking and other displaced people and supports them in integrating and thriving in their new communities. Founded in 1978, Refugee Services of Texas (RST) is a social service agency dedicated to providing services to refugees and other displaced persons fleeing persecution based on race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, and/or political opinion and also to the communities that welcome them. WHO IS RST?

WHO DO WE SERVE?

Refugee Services of Texas serves a variety of clients from all over the world including:

Refugees: men, women, and children that have been forced to flee their home country due to persecution based on religion, political affiliation, or ethnicity. Refugees undergo the most intense vetting and screening process of any person entering the United States. Asylees: a person who has left their home country and is seeking asylum or has been granted asylum, qualifying for the same services as a refugee. They must meet the definition of a refugee but have secured their own travel to the United States. Survivors of Human Trafficking: RST serves adults and minors, foreign-born and domestic, who have been exploited through human trafficking through the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act. Special Immigrant Visas (SIVs): offered to Iraqi and Afghan citizens who are being threatened in their home countries due to their work with the U.S. military, usually after working as a translator or interpreter. Cuban/Haitian Entrants: Cubans and Haitians who flee their country for the U.S. are granted special status. Once on American soil, they are granted asylum and qualify for the same services as refugees. Central American Minors: Central American Minors come to the United States to escape violence and insecurity in their home countries. Most of these children come from Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Mexico. Through the U.S. Refugee Resettlement Program, these children are now lawfully able to be reunited with their families in the United States. 2

HOW DO WE SERVE? RST supports our clients in integrating and thriving in their new communities through providing comprehensive social services to our clients across Texas. RST’s Resettlement Team works to find housing for refugees before they arrive, welcomes families at the airport, enrolls children into their local school district and much more within the family’s first six months in the United States. The Survivors of Human Trafficking Empowerment Program (STEP) is designed to help survivors of both labor and sex trafficking throughout their transition to a stable and independent life. RST’s Community Wellness Program supports survivors of human trafficking who may have experienced trauma by offering various forms of mental health services. The Employment Team assists work-abled individuals in finding jobs using a strength-based strategy. Through job readiness courses, resume support, and enrollment in English language classes, our clients are introduced to workforce culture in the United States. The Immigration Legal Services Program provides free/low cost appointments to clients with our in-house attorney, who then assists clients in applying for Green Cards, Work Permits, and Citizenship. RST’s Intensive Case Management Team provides intensive case management for clients who have extensive medical needs. RST staff helps clients navigate the healthcare system and schedule needed appointments and surgeries.

The Social Adjustment Services (SAS) Team at RST provides extended case management up to five years after a refugee’s arrival to the United States.

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AREA OF GREATEST NEED

RST is a not-for-profit organization that receives most of its funding from federal grants, with decreased funding as the number of refugees allowed into the United States has gone down over 80% in the last 4 years . This affects our services for refugees that have already made the journey to the U.S. as well as other vulnerable populations we serve. During these uncertain times, community support for the services that RST provides is more significant than ever.

HOW CAN YOUR COMMUNITY CAN HELP?

FAITH BASED COMMUNITIES

Consider partnering with your faith community to raise funds for RST!

BUSINESSES Business fundraisers are local companies that encourage their employees to give back to their community during Amplify Austin. Businesses can help promote campaigns, and often times, offer incentive such as matching employee donations. Ask if your employer offers matching gifts, or if you own your own business, offer a matching gift to employee donations! You can create a fundraising page for RST through the Amplify Austin website to make raising donations easy or, gather in-kind donations from your community by hosting a collection or donation drive! RST is also happy to host a presentation for your faith community in-person or virtually to expand knowledge about the clients we serve across Texas!

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MANAGING YOUR INDIVIDUAL FUNDRAISING PAGE

As a fundraiser, here are some important dates to note when creating a profile:

January 19

Fundraisers can register and create pages to support RST and scheduled giving begins ! Fundraiser pages are sent to our Development and Marketing team for review and approval before they show up on the RST page of the Amplify Austin website. RST will promote your Amplify Austin fundraising page through our social media networks and newsletters for our community of supporters to see!

January 19 - March 3

March 3

Last day for Fundraisers to submit their profiles for review and approval.

March 4

6PM - Amplify Austin Day begins!

March 5

6PM - Amplify Austin ends. All donations must be given online by 5:59PM to count towards RST's goal of raising 40K!

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CREATING YOUR AMPLIFY AUSTIN FUNDRAISING PAGE

When creating your fundraising page for Amplify Austin, have the following ready to make setup easier:

Image to use for your profile

Your fundraising goal- this will help RST reach our $40K goal!

The story of why you're fundraising for RST

STEP 1 Go to www.amplifyatx.org/organizations/refugeeservicesoftexas and select “FUNDRAISE"

STEP 2

Create an account with the required information, using your email!

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STEP 3 Manage your RST fundraising page and find your link to share with friends and family during Amplify Austin!

STEP 4

Tell your story of why you're fundraising for RST, add an image to your page and set your fundraising goal for donors to help you reach that will help RST hit our $40K goal!

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STEP 5 After finishing and saving your fundraising page, share your fundraiser by sending a newsletter or email and posting to your social media networks to get your friends, coworkers and family to help you meet your goal for RST during Amplify Austin!

Social Media Tips

Know your networks: Different social media networks come with different unspoken rules and taboos. Ex: It is acceptable to post more often on Twitter than on Facebook, and you can post more on Facebook than you can on Instagram. Post regularly, but spread it out: People often need to be reminded of things a few times before they remember and are driven to take action. Make sure to post about your fundraiser multiple times leading up to Amplify Austin, but keep them spread out so that your friends, family and community are reminded leading up to March 4th! Share stories and photos: If you have personal stories about Refugee Services of Texas, share them! It is much easier for people to relate to personal stories of someone they know than broad descriptions of our services. Posts with pictures are shown to pop up further ahead in algorithms- if you can add a photo to your story, the more attention it will get! Share our posts: Refugee Services of Texas will be posting about Amplify Austin regularly. If you’re in a rush, sharing or retweeting our posts is an even easier way to spread the word and broaden our reach on social media! Tag RST on social media! : Don’t forget to use RST's hashtags when promoting your fundraising page on social media! #RST #AmplifyATX #AllAreWelcome #OpenHeartsFreshStarts Have fun and make gifs : Record you and your peers raising money and reaching goals during Amplify Austin! Use free online tools like Giphy Gifmaker to make gifs. Boomerang is another great tool that can be used on various social media platforms and is an included feature on Instagram and Facebook! Share why you give: Have a way with words that can inspire others? Make a video to hype people up to donate. Let your community know why donating to RST is important to you and why they should donate to your campaign!

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Sample Social Media Posts

Facebook

Amplify Austin is just X weeks/days away from now and I'm helping fundraise for Refugee Services of Texas to help welcome refugees, asylees, and survivors of trafficking to Texas! Raising donations for RST will directly impact the lives of each family who walks through their doors and will also help RST reach its goal of raising $40K for Amplify Austin! Click on the link below to see my fundraising page for Refugee Services of Texas to make a tax-deductible donation March 4-5! Want to give early?! Schedule your donation starting today!!! Insert your fundraising page link here and add your fundraiser profile picture to the post to get a bigger reach! Don't forget to use RST's hashtags: #AmplifyATX #WelcomeRefugees #StandwithAsylees #FightHumanTrafficking #OpenHeartsFreshStarts Amplify Austin is just X days/weeks away and this year, I'm fundraising for Refugee Services of Texas as a way of welcoming refugees, asylees and survivors of trafficking to Texas!

Twitter

Help me reach my goal of raising $X now through March 5 using the link below - every donation counts!

Insert your fundraising page link here and add your fundraiser profile picture to the post to get a bigger reach!

Instagram

Amplify Austin is just X weeks/days away from now and I'm helping fundraise for Refugee Services of Texas to help welcome refugees, asylees, and survivors of trafficking to Texas! Raising donations for RST will directly impact the lives of each family who walks through their doors and will also help RST reach its goal of raising $40K for Amplify Austin! Click on the link in my bio to see my fundraising page for Refugee Services of Texas, and make a tax-deductible donation starting NOW through March 5th! Insert your fundraising page link in your bio, add your fundraiser profile picture to the post and don't forget to use RST's hashtags: #AmplifyATX #WelcomeRefugees #StandwithAsylees #FightHumanTrafficking #OpenHeartsFreshStarts 9

Sample Outreach Email Not everyone in our circle of friends and family may on social media, so tools like email or newsletters can also be invaluable in encouraging your network to donate during Amplify Austin! Feel free to tailor this email to your fundraising goals, or customize it with a personal story about why you're choosing to support Refugee Services of Texas!

Email

Hi friends!

You may know that I am involved with Refugee Services of Texas (RST) as a X (board member, advisory committee member, volunteer, etc.) and we have some exciting plans for Amplify Austin this year! RST is the largest refugee resettlement agency in Texas with six sites throughout the state and in addition to refugees, RST also serves asylum seekers, unaccompanied children and survivors of human trafficking. RST’s Survivors of Trafficking Empowerment Program (STEP) is unique in that it serves survivors of both sex and labor trafficking; men, women and children; and those both foreign-born and domestic. STEP provides comprehensive programming to victims from the time of identification through self-sufficiency. Personally, I became involved with RST because….XXX I have emailed you today as a trusted friend and member of my community to ask you to join me in my fundraising during Amplify Austin to raise $X that will contribute to RST's important work across Texas! Your donation of any amount will go to help support refugees, asylees, survivors of trafficking, and other displaced people in our own community, and will help RST raise $40K during Amplify Austin!

Thank you in advance for cheering me on and for your support!

If you follow the link below, you can schedule a donation starting today , or during Amplify Austin on March 4-5!

[insert link of your fundraising page here]

Sincerely grateful,

[your name here]

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FUNDRAISING EVENT IDEAS Whether you’re fundraising for RST as an individual, faith community, or as a business, a great way to help solicit donations for RST during Amplify Austin is to create and host an event among your friends or in the community! There is nothing as powerful as being able to share with someone about the cause you are fundraising for and why it’s important to you- whether in-person or virtually!

IN THE COMMUNITY

WITH FRIENDS

Throw a Virtual Spring Cleaning Garage Sale! Everyone likes to do some spring cleaning. Take this opportunity to de-clutter your home or ask supporters to donate items to your garage/yard sale and create a virtual garage sale with pictures to sell those items in exchange for donations to your fundraising page! Ask a business you may frequent to donate a small percentage of their sales during Amplify Austin week to Refugee Services of Texas! Collect in-kind donations! RST welcomes new families to our Texas communities every day and donations of household goods and more are always needed! If you have a connection to a great in-kind donation or want to host a donation drive, this is the perfect way to get your community involved as a stepping stone with RST! Ask RST to speak at your next gathering in- person or virtually to talk about their growing programs and how monetary or in- kind donations can make an impact on refugees and survivors of trafficking in the community! Pair up with a company and provide thank- you gifts to donors who made a contribution to your fundraising page!

Host a virtual dinner! Everyone likes to be invited to a dinner... why not host a virtual one! Start the night prepping your meal with your community on Zoom, talking about why you're choosing to support RST through Amplify Austin, encouraging folks to donate through your fundraising page after you share your why ! End the evening celebrating donations made towards reaching your fundraising goal! Create a signature drink and host a virtual Happy Hour! Amplify Austin begins on March 4th at 6PM, so find an easy drink everyone can re-create at home and invite some friends and coworkers to join you for a virtual happy hour to kickoff 24-hours of giving! Share why you're choosing to support RST through fundraising during Amplify Austin and encourage your community to give! Make it a competition! Challenge your friends to sign up as fundraisers for an organization they are passionate about and hold a phonebank party to encourage friendly competition and see who can raise the most money for their cause during Amplify Austin!

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T h a n k Yo u for your generosity to support RST through being a FUNdraiser during Amplify Austin!

Have questions or want more information? Email us at austin@rstx.org and we'll have our staff contact you!

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