We are so excited that you have registered to participate in Cycle for STEM! Together, we are raising
awareness that a solid STEM education is essential to maintaining our Nation's position as a world
leader and that STEM education offers students a bright future in the American workforce.
America’s strength is dependent on the fact that as a nation we have never shirked from investing in
our young people and have constantly worked to build a new generation of the “best and the
Since its founding, shaping a stronger and more secure future for America has been the goal of our
AFCEA Educational Foundation.
Our Foundation’s activities aim to inspire academic excellence, promote leadership qualities and put
young people on the path to success. We are 100% focused in providing education assistance – as
much as $2 million in scholarships annually—to military veterans, ROTC Students, and STEM (Science,
Technology, Engineering and Math) students and teachers.
This year, the Foundation is celebrating its 35th anniversary. In these 35 years, our nation has
witnessed an inspiring era of phenomenal technological breakthroughs. We’re proud to have played
a role in backing many of the people who have helped achieve these astonishing results.
Throughout our proud history AFCEA Educational Foundation has never stopped investing in a
smarter, stronger America. More than ever, the challenge continues.
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Fundraising is easy! Here are three
steps to getting started.
 Customize your
fundraising page
by adding
 Share with your
donors why you
have chosen to
Cycle for STEM.
People respond to
personal stories.
 Update your goal
to reflect your
 Update your
Facebook page
and Twitter feed.
 Make the first
donation and
encourage others
to match that
 Don’t forget to
mention that
donations are
100% tax
 Send out an email
to everyone in
your contact list.
 Emails pile up and people might forget. Send
a follow up email, text
or phone call.
 Send them a text
message or tweet
 Make sure to tell
them why you are
supporting the
AFCEA Educational
 Don’t forget to ask
them to donate—
suggest a donation
amount ($20 or
$25) and include a
link to your
fundraising page.
 Mention again
that all donations
are taxdeductible!
 Carry donation forms
with you when you are
out running errands.
Hand them out to local
businesses you frequent like the barber,
nail salon, pizza parlor
and pub.
 Stay positive and believe in your reason for
 Don’t feel guilty about
asking for donations—
people want to support
those causes you are
passionate about.
 Check your fundraising
progress regularly by
checking your
fundraising page.
 Keep Facebook and
Twitter updated with
your fundraising
 Don’t forget to send
out Thank You letters
to all your donors.
Are you wondering “how can I raise money for the AFCEA
Education Foundation? It isn’t as difficult as you might think.
Consider all the individuals in your life – those from your
family, work, church, etc. Once you begin to identify individuals
then you are able to outreach to them for support.
Making a difference in JUST 7 DAYS could not be easier
Use the guidelines below to help you raise $500.
DAY 1: Sponsor yourself first
$ 25.00
DAY 2: Ask 4 family members to sponsor you for $25 each
DAY 3: Ask 5 co-workers to contribute $15 each
$ 75.00
DAY 4: Ask 5 friends to contribute $20 each
DAY 5: Ask 5 neighbors to sponsor you for $15
$ 75.00
DAY 6: Ask your boss for a company contribution of $50
$ 50.00
DAY 7: Ask 3 businesses you frequent for a donation of $25 each
$ 75.00
The key to a successful letter campaign is writing a good letter. Here are
some suggestions for writing a successful fundraising letter:
1. Grab your holiday card list or your wedding invitee list and begin writing! Letters can expand your
donor base to people you may not see on a regular basis. Send them the letter and let them decide.
Check with your family for relatives and people who knew you as a child. Do not hesitate to include
casual acquaintances, as they will understand that you are seeking donations for a worthy cause.
2. Put your HEART into you letter. Tell them why you are doing this. Don't include too many facts and
figures; instead include your personal story of why you have taken on this task. Someone will donate to
you because they know you and want to support your reasons for doing this .
3. Include a call to action. Don't just tell them what you are doing, ask for their help. Include your personal
fundraising goal in the letter, and suggest giving levels. Do not diminish your request by being
apologetic or by saying something similar to "I hope you can donate something".
4. Make it easy to donate. Include a return envelope for them to send their donation to you. Label the
envelopes with your address. It is nice to include a stamp on the return envelope.
5. Provide a description of AFCEA Educational Foundation and tell your story - show your passion for our
6. Ask donors to make checks payable to the AFCEA Educational Foundation include your name and "Cycle
for STEM” in the memo line.
7. Set a deadline. People are always motivated by deadlines. We give you a deadline for your own
fundraising, but we recommend that you set a deadline earlier than that date. This way you can assess
your fundraising and revise your plan if needed before the actual deadline.
8. Send a reminder. Keep a list of those who send in donations. Send a reminder to those what have not
yet donated. Include training updates in your reminder, and let them know that fundraising is going
well, but you still have a bit farther to go. Sometimes, reminder letters are more successful than original
letters for bringing in the money.
9. Send a "thank you" card. "Thanks" is a powerful word. It is nice to receive a note acknowledging the
importance of a donation, no matter the amount. Staying in communication develops a rapport that
will have many added benefits, from closer bonds of friendship to continued support for another
season of Cycle for STEM.
Dear <Name>,
I recently signed up to participate in the AFCEA Educational Foundations Cycle for STEM challenge bike ride.
I am very excited to be contributing to a great cause and participating in this challenging event. The goal of
this year's ride is to raise $75,000 so that we might continue to invest in classroom teachers who are
providing innovative STEM learning opportunities in their classrooms as well as academically talented
undergraduate and graduate students majoring in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM).
My personal goal is to raise <$$> through this event. I would like for you to join me in supporting this great
cause by making a contribution toward my fundraising efforts. The AFCEA Educational Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, so any donation you make will be tax deductible.
The U.S. will have more than 1.2 million job openings in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM)
related occupations by 2018. These include jobs in technology management, digital forensics,
bioinformatics, electrical and chemical engineering, and foreign languages. Yet there are significant
shortages of qualified individuals to fill these careers.
The AFCEA Educational Foundation’s activities aim to develop critical thinkers, increase technical literacy,
enable the next generation of innovators, and put young people on paths to success. They are 100%
focused on providing educational assistance – as much as $2 million in scholarships annually with AFCEA
Chapters and AFCEA International combined – to military veterans, wounded warriors, ROTC students, and
STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) students and teachers.
I believe in the work that the AFCEA Educational Foundation is doing, investing in our young people who
have constantly worked to build a new generation of the “best and the brightest.” I hope that you will join
me in supporting them. You can donate toward my fundraising by visiting my personal webpage at
<http://…> or by mailing a check made out to the AFCEA Educational Foundation to my address at <…>.
Thanks in advance for your generosity and willingness to join the movement to create awareness that a
solid STEM education is essential to maintaining our position as a world leader and to our national defense
- creating critical thinkers, increasing technical literacy, and enabling the next generation of innovators.
<Your Signature>
P.S. For more information about the AFCEA Educational Foundation please visit
education/scholarships. For more information about Cycle for STEM or to donate online, please visit
Sending follow-up emails, letters, and calls to your donors is one of the most important components of a
successful fundraising plan. Do not be surprised if you have to follow up 3-4 times with your donors until
you receive a donation. Do not get discouraged and do not think you are a pest - chances are they were
busy and forgot. Timely and effective reminder communications are key!
Sample Follow Up Letter/Email
Dear <Name>
I need your help! As you know, I have joined Cycle for STEM to support the AFCEA Educational Foundation because <insert
personal story>.
The largest donor this week will get recognition on my personal webpage as well as on Facebook and Twitter. And anyone who
donates this week will get their name on my team shirt.
By working together, we can give deserving students and teachers the necessary education and resources to be successful both
inside and outside the classroom.
You can give by visiting my personal webpage at <http://…> or by mailing a check made out to the AFCEA Educational
Foundation to my address at <…>.
No donation is too small…every penny counts and there is still time to support STEM education.
<Your Signature>
Sample Thank You Letter/Email
Dear <Name>,
On behalf of the AFCEA Educational Foundation, thank you for supporting me of the inaugural AFCEA Cycle for STEM bicycle ride
that took place July 13-19.
<Insert your best story or stories from the ride.>
This event would not have been a success without the generous support you have provided us throughout. Thanks to you, I
raised <$ > to support scholarships, grants and awards to academically talented students studying in a technical field, and to
classroom teachers providing innovative STEM learning opportunities in their classrooms; at the same time, you helped raise
awareness that a solid STEM education is essential to maintaining the Nation’s position as a world leader and that STEM
education offers students a bright future in our Nation’s workforce.
I deeply appreciate the willingness with which you have and hope you will continue to support our efforts to engage the global
community in dynamic learning environments that foster technical innovation and thoughtful leadership; develop collaborative
partnerships that create learning opportunities in the STEM disciplines; and educate the next generation of leaders by providing
the critical training and financial resources necessary to succeed in tomorrow’s workplace.
Thank you again!
PS: To see pictures from the ride, check out <Fliker or Tumbler> at <insert link>.
Leveraging social media increases fundraising totals by up to 40%!
Facebook—Post It!
Start a Facebook group to get the word out about your fundraising. Invite your
friends and update this page frequently with your progress on both training
and fundraising.
Include a link to your personal fundraising page each time you post an update.
Tag people who have contributed to your fundraising.
Twitter—Tweet it!
Tweet weekly about your commitment to your Cycle for STEM fundraising goal.
Include a link to your personal fundraising page so people can follow you.
Follow up with people on Twitter with email or tweets about your
fundraising. Use the hashtag #C4STEM
Blog About It!
Participate in our blog,
Provide updates on your training and fundraising.
Invite your donors to be add a blog post sharing why they are supporting you
and Cycle for STEM.
Message—Text it!
Send an introductory text message to your friends asking for their email if they wish to know
more about Cycle for STEM.
Send a text asking people to donate – include the URL for your fundraising
Send a quick text message to the donor right after their make their donation.
Thank them right on the spot.
The Key is to Ask!
Unless you ask, the answer will always be no.
Watch Party: Grab the opportunity to turn an ordinary football, hockey or basketball game into a
fundraising event. Host a watch party at your house and ask for a donation from each attendee.
Make it Special: Request donations to your fundraising page instead of a birthday gift.
Yard Sale: Use spring cleaning as a way to raise funds. Sell old books and games and put the earnings
towards your goal. (Ask your friends and neighbors to pitch in.)
Jeans Day: Ask your coworkers to make a $5 donation in exchange for wearing jeans to work (be sure
to check with your HR department).
Perform a free service for donations: Rake leaves, shovel snow, take care of a pet. When offering your
service, ask the person who benefited from your actions for a donation toward your worthy cause.
Car Wash: With a group of friends, set up a car wash in the parking lot of your school, church, or public
area. (Be sure to ask for permission and make sure that people are careful of moving cars).
Jellybean count: Fill a jar with jellybeans and have people pay to guess how many there are in the jar.
Change It – Start a competition between classes, families or individuals by giving them each a coin jar to
collect change for a designated amount of time. The one with the most collected wins a prize.
Board Game Tournament: Pick a favorite, such as Monopoly. Assemble 4 person teams that will work
together to accumulate points or you can allow individuals to participate. Charge an entry fee for each
Office Olympics: Paperclip chain jump rope, office chair races, post-it origami contests. Entry fees.
Enough said.
Wishing Well: Nobody can resist dropping a quarter or two into a wishing well. To be effective, the well
needs to be in a high-traffic area.
Video Game Tournament: Think you are the best gamer among your friends? Prove it! Charge entry
fees and have a concession stand and settle.
Bake Sale: Put your Grandma’s favorite cookie recipe to good use and host a bake sale.
Sponsor Your Miles: Ask friends, family, neighbors, everyone to sponsor a mile or multiple of miles. For
example: $1 per mile.
Frequently Asked Questions
AFCEA Educational Foundation is a private, non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization organized under the laws
of the District of Columbia. Tax ID: 54-1115312.
Donations to the Foundation are tax deductible to the extent allowed by federal law.
The Foundation invests 85% of its resources on program related activities.
The Foundation supports classroom teachers; undergraduate and graduate students; ROTC cadets; and
veterans and wounded warriors through scholarships, awards and grants.
The AFCEA Educational Foundation believes a solid STEM education is essential to maintaining our
position as a world leader and to our national defense.
Since 2009, the Foundation has invested over $1.3 million in support to classroom teachers who are
providing innovative STEM learning opportunities in their classrooms – directly impacting over 60,000
middle and high school students.
Collectively, AFCEA International, the AFCEA Educational Foundation, and AFCEA Chapters invest
approximately $2 million annually in scholarships to military veterans, wounded warriors, ROTC
students, and STEM students and teachers.
MAIL: AFCEA Educational Foundation
4400 Fair Lakes Court
Fairfax, VA 22033-3899
PHONE: (703) 631-6149
EMAIL: [email protected]