Café Holístico, Global Brigades' own coffee sales initiative, offers volunteers a way to increase the well-being of rural families while also generating significant funds for a brigade. All the coffee is sourced from Nicaragua and Honduras in the same regions where Global Brigades works. Because we buy directly, we can provide farmers 2-3 times more income per pound than they would otherwise receive. Download the Fundraising Guide for more information on how to get started.
Fundraising by the Cup or Individual Bag
Find a place on or near campus to set up a coffee stand. Order roasted gourmet coffee to brew and sell by the cup. Contact Global Brigades staff to request a Café Holístico tabletop display.
12 oz bag: 10.50 USD* (minimum order of 40 bags)
5-pound bag: 47.50 USD* (minimum order of 3 bags)
*Shipping to US and Canada included
Alternatively, your chapter or individual volunteers can sell coffee by the bag to friends and families. Use the Pre-Order Form to organize your sales. Use the information to place a wholesale order. Once the coffee is shipped, deliver it to your customers.
- Local Business Sponsorship
- Matching Donations
- Stadium/Event Clean-Up
- Trivia Night
- Late-Night Food Sales
- Percentage of Sales / Cover Charge
- Collection Jar at Public Events
- Benefit Dinner
- 50/50 Raffle
- Benefit Concert
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Average Results: 100-1,000 USD
When requesting donations from local businesses, they will want to know how their donations will benefit themselves, the brigade participants, and the communities you will be helping. Below is a template you can use for requesting sponsorship on behalf of your chapter:
When reaching out to local businesses for sponsorship, we recommend meeting with a business representative face-to-face. If you're unable to visit the business in person, you can use the email template below:
You'll need to work directly with the sponsoring business to determine the best way to receive funds. Sponsors may also want to know exactly how their donation will be allocated for your brigade. Share with them the Program Contribution Breakdown.
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Average Results: 300-400 USD (as high as 1,300 USD)
As you are reaching out to friends, family, or others within your network for donations, ask them if their workplace offers matching donations. Additionally, Global Brigades has partnered with DonateDouble, an organization specializing in matching donation support. They have established contact with 2,500 + companies and provide immediate submission to request a matching donation to Global brigades USA.
Using Donate Double
When making online donations to US brigade groups on Global Brigades website, donors may select the DonateDouble option. If selected, Donate Double will initiate a donation matching request on their behalf. Please note, there is no guarantee that an employer will match a donation, and follow-up steps may be required of the donor before the donation can be approved by the employer. Global Brigades staff are happy to provide supplemental documentation to companies in order to receive matching donations. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you need supporting documents for your matching donation request. All donations processed through Donate Double will incur a service charge of $1 + 10% of the matching donation amount.
If the matching donation is scheduled to be sent to Global Brigades after the volunteer's brigade, special approval will be needed from Global Brigades staff in order to count the matching donation towards the volunteer's fundraising goal.
Average Results: 500-600 USD per event
Get paid to clean sections of a stadium or event center after a major sports event or concert. Many venues prefer to employ student or philanthropic groups to perform these duties. It’s messy work and takes a few hours to complete, but many hands can make light work and generate funds for your brigade.
Average Results: 600-700 USD (as high as 1,200 USD)
Invite teams of 3-4 people to compete in a massive trivia contest.
Secure a venue, and line up tables and chairs. Design a set of trivia questions and an answer sheet. (Mix in a few that relate to Global Brigades or international health and development, too.) Reach out to a local celebrity (or someone from your chapter with charisma) to serve as the quizmaster. Secure sponsors and prizes from local businesses, and secure refreshments for breaks.
Put together an all-star team of popular professors as a special challenge, and let the teams come up with creative names.
Average Results: 700-800 USD (as high as 1,000 USD)
Sell foods like grilled cheese sandwiches or hot dogs late at night on weekends or during final exam weeks. Set up a food stand in a highly trafficked area or offer a delivery service to apartments and dorm rooms. If you sell the food items in a public space, be sure to follow campus or city regulations by getting any necessary permits or approvals prior to the event.
Average Results: 700-800 USD (as high as 1,500 USD)
Work with a local restaurant, bar/pub, or nightclub to get a percentage of sales or the cover charges for an evening. Vendors typically offer this opportunity to philanthropic organizations on a slower night of the week (usually Wednesday or Thursday, but almost never Friday).
Competition among local groups for these charity nights may be fierce, so approach these establishments early to secure an ideal slot. Then, promote your night heavily to maximize the turnout.
Average Results: 800-1,000 USD (as high as 2,000 USD)
Accept cash donations outside major sports events, concerts, or other public events on campus or in the metro area. Advance planning is crucial because competition can be fierce for these collections. You’ll need a several people for this fundraiser, containers, donation receipts (for donors who want one), information about your upcoming, and security arrangements (if you’re carrying a lot of money).
Be sure to follow campus or city regulations by getting any necessary permits or approvals prior to the event.
Difficulty: Moderate to Complex
Average Results: 4,000-5,000 USD
Organize a special dinner to promote your brigade.
You’ll need to secure a venue. Plan the meal with fellow brigaders or secure a restaurant sponsor for your event. Promote the event, send invitations,and set the décor. Arrange a special speaker, develop visuals, and/or produce a video to share brigade stories with your guests.
Average Results: 400-500 USD (as high as 1,100 USD)
Sell raffle tickets for $5 each (5 for $20). Offer to split the total amouont of money with the lucky winner. Promote the raffle heavily to maximize ticket sales.
Difficulty: Moderate to Complex
Average Results: 2,000-2,500 USD
Organize a concert or variety show using local talent.
Secure a venue, and line up audio/visual assistance. Recruit musicians or other talented performers. Promote the event, sell tickets, and share brigade stories during the event, explaining how the ticket sales will benefit your upcoming brigade.
Average Results: 300-800 USD
Many university campuses offer scholarships for students involved in service abroad. Volunteers should reach out to their Student Activities Office (or equivalent), study abroad office, college/department office (e.g. College of Science office), and/or Honors program office (if applicable) to determine if scholarship opportunities are available.Global Brigades staff are happy to provide supplemental documentation to volunteers, as needed, in order to receive scholarships.
Scholarships may also be offered by local service or social clubs in your community. Reach out to your local chapter of organizations such Rotary International to determine if they can offer scholarships or grants in support of your brigade.
For more ideas on ways to fundraise for an upcoming brigade, reach out to your brigade leader.
General Tips for Fundraising
Share Your Story
Share pictures and stories from your brigade experience. Some volunteers like to host an open house before and/or after their brigade to publicly recognize and thank supporters. Offering to share with your supporters a follow-up presentation about what occurred during your volunteer work is a great way to secure repeat funding from alumni associations, educational institutions, or corporate sponsors.
Thank You Notes
A handwritten thank you note for your donors with pictures and updates from your brigade is always appreciated. It can also keep your donors interested in supporting future brigades.