Allthis.com has a neat idea: you pick something you like to do, or something you want to sell, and you auction it through their website. The proceeds go to the cause, organization, or charity of your choice. There’s a tiny little listing fee, like a couple of dollars. You get to contribute something other than cash, and someone gets to contribute to a charity while still getting something they need or want.
I set up a listing for 4 hours of visual facilitation (the paper kind, not the iPad kind) for any organization holding a meeting in the Bay Area or North Bay. No bids yet, but there’s still time to get in on the action! The auction, if it sells, will benefit the Mt. Diablo chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) — I spoke at their meeting in March, and they are doing a fundraiser for their annual conference.
Charities and other organizations can register with Allthis.com and then ask supporters to list auctions, as well as spreading the word that the auctions are there. It’s an interesting solution to the problem of how to organize a fundraiser, and it seems a lot more painless than some of the ones I ran when I was a teacher. I remember the year I boycotted candy sales and had my students sell photography portrait packages instead. Talk about a market mismatch.