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Fundraising to go to Cambodia with UNION

Keep Your Eye on the Prize

Before May 1st I was freaking, literally freaking out, but frozen and unable to get my fundraising started. I was scared that I wouldn't be able to raise the money. A careless negative comment here and there from a family member or a co-worker made me doubt that I would be successful in raising the money from the people around me. I worried that they wouldn't care about this cause that means so much to me. Thank Goddess, I was wrong, most cared and even more importantly, many were unbelievably generous.

I have always wanted to do a volunteer trip and I have always wanted to go to Cambodia. It is a place on my bucket list for as long as I can remember.

In the end this fear was unreasonable and unfounded. I had fundraised in the past but not to this extent. I had raised $800 for Cancer once with my cookies between three lawyers from where I used to work. I also raised nearly $800 for the Ride to Conquer Cancer last year and also about that amount for Breast Cancer, yet this fundraising was different. It wasn't for a disease and it was for something out of the country. I had no idea whether it would work or not. I told myself that it was okay if I couldn't fundraise it all, then I would foot the bill, but being of an age where retirement isn't so far off I have to be careful with money. I had to remind myself that I was also giving of my time, three weeks of vacation plus vaccines and medication that have totalled over $500.00.

I had a lot of ideas. Bake sales of course, as baking is my forte and another passion. Solicit co-workers, family and friends. Partner with others that are fundraising, and in the end this didn't materialize as I didn't need to, although it is a good idea. Utilize all the contacts I can think of. In the end I was pleasantly surprised at just how many people I do know.

A co-worker who had ridden in the Ride to Conquer Fundraiser went for lunch with me and helped me to brainstorm and made suggestions about a fundraiser event. It made me feel better but I still didn't get anything started and by now it was mid-March.

Rainbow had mentioned inviting a group of people to a home, serve some Cambodian food and raise funds. As I thought more and more about this I wanted to have a fundraiser at a restaurant and a Cambodian restaurant at that. There were only three in Vancouver that I knew of and I knew nothing about them other than what I could find on the internet. Phnom Penh, Angkor Restaurant and another one on Robson that was Cambodian/Vietnamese. Not many choices and Phnom Penh was the best sounding choice but parking would be better at Angkor Restaurant. Still couldn't decide what to do and I was once again frozen with fear of contacting the restaurants.

Then things started to move and boy did they move at lightening speed. On the last Saturday in April HOPE had their largest fundraising event of the year. It was a dinner at the Vancouver Trade and Convention Centre. All the local Cambodian team members were in attendance. After meeting face to face I felt like I had been given a double dose of adrenaline. Knowing I would be working alongside these caring women spured me on and gave me the boost that I needed.

So here are the facts:

March 3, 2013 I created my fundraising page on the HOPE website. It was important to me that I wrote something meaningful. It had to be me speaking. What I wrote is contained in the first entry of this blog.

Shortly after, Rainbow donated to me and that made me so happy but I was still frozen about what to do and how to get started.

April 26, 2013 I had dinner at the HOPE International Development Agency's main fundraiser and got to meet the team. Wow, what an amazing and inspiring group of women. I no longer felt like one, but a team, a group that would work together and get the task done.

After the fundraiser dinner my mind kept spewing out ideas and thoughts. Have to start the bake sale and get the fundraising off the ground as it was only two months before we leave for Cambodia.

May 3, 2013. Fundraising for Cambodia in the past two days. On Thursday I had a bake sale at my office...you guys who know me have had my baking, especially the chocolate chip cookies. They are pretty amazing.

Anyways bake sale at work on Thurs raised $839.00. Can you spell WOW. Another at the gym today (ironic I know, but they have eaten my cookies. I told people to be a hero, donate and get cookies for their co-workers, family and friends). Raised another $524 today and $224 from the gym. I have now raised 47% of my goal!!

May 19, 2013 I had raised $2,783.00 so far with another $300 promised for a total of $3,083.00.

May 26, 2013 Fundraiser at Indochine Kitchen in Vancouver. Raised just under $1,200.00. Some excess funds went to a team member that needed a hand.

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June 3, 2013 To date I have raised $4,387.50. Still possibly more donations to trickle in as some have promised and haven't as yet so we will see.

July 2, 2013 Fundraising total is at $5,032.50 (this includes $60 US from a generous cousin that I will take to use in Cambodia in the village where we are going.

This fundraising venture has been an amazing experience. My incredible success at raising so much money tells me that there are many people in this world that really do care and want to make life better for others. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to my dear family and friends for all your amazing support, financially and emotionally. Couldn't have gotten here without you all. Love Cynda.

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Posted by Sydney324 16:30 Archived in Cambodia Tagged cambodia fundraising volunteer

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