Ronald McDonald House Charities Field Project

Team 6 – Fundraiser Benefiting RMHC

Project Description

We conducted a tiered fundraising event that provides a variety of options for people to participate.  

  • Online Fundraising:  The charity has a method for online fundraising through their website.  We used this website in social media and email fundraising efforts.
  • Day of Service:  The volunteers worked with the head chef to fed approximately 80 families on Sunday, November 10, 2019 from 9:45 AM – 1 PM CT at Ronald McDonald House at Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago, IL
  • Volunteer Appreciation: We provided each volunteer with donated gifts through employee matching programs.  This satisfies the need to thank volunteers for their service but didn’t cut into the proceeds we can provide the charity.

About our Charity

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana
Chapter Business Office
1301 W. 22nd Street, Suite 905
Oak Brook, IL 60523

Ronald McDonald House Charities impacted the lives of 2 team members (Adam and Chyristina) directly which was a leading reason we chose to focus on this particular charity.  Ronald McDonald House Charities is a national organization with local Chicagoland roots.  Their mission is to provide families the opportunity to get better together. Their philosophy is a sick child is a sick family.  To that end, they provide an opportunity for 150 families to stay close to the resources while their child is in the hospital for medical care or treatment.  This allows families to remain as close as possible and provide support to their child and each other during this difficult time. Our team has contacted the charity through a couple of mediums.  Volunteers are required to submit a formal application via the RMHC website (listed below). Our team has submitted an application and followed up with a subsequent email. We have chosen a couple of dates to hold our day of service.  RMHC has a social media presence, website, literature and other collateral our group can leverage during this charity event.  

Project Objectives

We found our preliminary budget was no longer viable as the project progressed.  Please find our revised projections below.  The measures used to assess project success were based on our most likely case scenario.

Project Goals and Success

This project exceeded all our expectations.  It has been a great experience to serve our community in this way.  Based on our success matrix, we exceeded our goals as follows:

Our team was acknowledged as one of the top contributors by for 2019 RMHC for Chicagoland and Northern Indiana.

Our total online fundraising effort exceeded our best case projection by $945, and the matching contributions for employers exceeded expectations by $775.  Our volunteers also came through providing us with 15 people for our day of service. Although we didn’t meet our best case scenario for volunteers, we did exceed both our worse and most likely case estimates.

We assessed a static amount of $40 of in-kind contributions per volunteer.  The in-kind amount is based on Chicago’s minimum wage of $10/hour. In addition, the company gifts for volunteer appreciation and volunteer paid parking have to be accounted for in our total budget calculations.  The volunteer appreciation gifts are Starbucks gift cards valued at $10/person provided to each volunteer via their confirmed email address.

Lessons Learned

  • Have Realistic Goals:  We learned having realistic goals helped our project be successful.  We were able to focus on a few targeted areas and this made project management and execution easily divisible among team members. 
  • Start Planning Early:  We had a full month to raise funds prior to our day of service event. This helped us standardized communications to donors and drive volunteer participation.  This also helped us minimize scope creep because we were able to assess results weekly based on our established goals.
  • People Are Generous:  We couldn’t have made our goals without the contributions of our friends and families.  They made our goals possible.

Advice for Future Teams

  • Personal Stories Matter:  Two of our team members were personally impacted by the charity, and we believe this is a key reason why our results were so stellar.  Choose something you’re passionate about.  
  • Contingency Plans Count:  Thinking through all the things that can go wrong, assigning team members to monitor and respond to those risks, and planning for contingencies helped a TON.  We were able to effectively manage towards mitigating the risks which made our project easier. 
  • Work with an Organized Charity:  We didn’t have some of the issues other teams in the past had because our charity is well established and organized.  If you choose to work with a less organized charity, understand that will impact your project scoping.
  • Knowing Your Team Matters:  We are part of an 18 month MBA cohort so we knew each other’s strengths and weaknesses.  We were able to assign tasks based on those things which made our project run smoothly. Get to know your team outside of class.  That connection works wonders.

About Our Event

Here’s a compilation of pictures from our Day of Service.