Pasta Feed for Operation Smile
What is the specific activity or project?
The title is fairly self-explanatory ….. we held this event as a fundraiser in 2019, but unfortunately have not been able to hold it since then due to COVID. The “program” consisted of a brief powerpoint presentation on Operation Smile by club members, plus we brought some games (Giant Jenga, Corn Hole toss, etc.) and a boombox that made for a fun evening.
Why was it particularly meaningful and/or fun for your club to do?
There are millions of children who are living with untreated cleft lip and cleft palate conditions which cause significant difficulties eating, breathing, speaking and being accepted by many of their peers and communities. Operation Smile is a nonprofit organization that raises funds and recruits medical teams to provide free cleft lip and cleft palate surgeries in the 3rd World. They estimate that it costs around $240 (and 45 minutes) per surgery to literally change a child’s life trajectory! The increase in acceptance, self-confidence and ability to dream like their peers cannot be understated! We ended up raising close to $1,000 which was good for four life-altering surgeries!
How easy or difficult was it to plan and implement? scale of 1-5 with 1 = easy, 5 = difficult
This event is a 3. It was fairly simply to set up as we held it in the evening in our school commons (main eating area) and made arrangements with the Food Service staff to use the kitchen facilities. What took the most time was preparation and serving of the pasta, salads and desserts, etc.
How many active and engaged people does it take to be successful?
4-8 active beforehand doing planning and selling tickets, at least 8-12 day of the event (taking tickets, setting up tables, preparing food and drink, setting up and organizing games, clean-up).
Does it require funding or additional resources to launch? to continue?
Start-up expenses are minimal as club members were asked to look in their home pantries and donate food items (pasta, pasta sauce, salad stuff, bread, dessert, drinks, etc.) We were able to borrow games from individuals and our Student Council.
Tips and lessons learned?
We made tickets for $5 and gave each club member several of them with the instructions they could either sell them to others or buy them themselves (this was a good incentive to encourage people to learn sales techniques and we also gave out small gift cards for people who had sold tickets). We found that many people bought tickets/made donations even though they didn’t actually plan on coming to the event because they knew it was for a good cause.
Are you willing to provide any resources (templates, timelines, samples, etc.) to help other clubs?
Yes! We are happy to share a timeline of tasks, an agenda for the evening, sample Powerpoint program, tickets plus sales script, etc.