image with permission from and thanks to foodieprints.com
I remember my first foray into food fundraising. I was six years old and it was the Girl Guides who got me. Door to door, I went, tote a plate of cookies, offering neighbours samples and then asking them to kindly fill in the order sheet. I didn’t take no for an answer. Since then, I’ve shilled Krispy Kreme and chocolate bars for my baseball team and have taken part in more bake sales than I can recall. But, the real fundraising with food comes from food events as fundraisers. As a food-fanatic and someone who is pretty involved in her community, connecting food to whatever program I am involved with makes a lot of sense.
Take for example, Ottawa’s first Poutine Crawl, which took place in July to raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society and more specifically, for Isabelle Rivard’s challenge to bike from Vancouver to Austin, Texas with LiveStrong. The event raised over $1000 and participants visited seven different purveyors of poutine in downtown Ottawa. Not bad, right?
In September, Ottawa hosted its second annual Cupcake Camp. The fundraiser was a success, generating more than $6000 for the non-profits involved, with about five-hundred tasters. And, there were cupcakes, so how much could have gone wrong? A few weeks later, I dedicated my mad baking skills to the first Road Hockey Showdown, to raise donations to the Ottawa Food Bank. In ways big or small, food and food events are a great way to get involved in the community.
Fundraising with food is often easier said than done, but the one thing these fundraisers had in common was that they were held as events, rather than simply asking people to partake in conspicuous consumption of food during their daily routine. Getting involved, as foodies, with charitable and volunteer organizations in your community is an amazing way to give back. And you might even get to eat some sweet treats along the way.
How have you used food to become more involved in the community?