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Incorporating Awareness Days into Your Fundraising Campaign

Awareness days and months and National Holidays are a convenient and powerful means of supercharging your fundraising campaigns. They’re a wonderful way of bringing people together around a common cause.

Organizing your campaigns around awareness days allows you to:

  • Tap into ongoing conversations
  • Leverage existing digital assets and toolkits
  • Reach new audiences 
  • And more!

Let's use January as an example

There are several month-long awareness themes through January.

  • National Mentoring Month
  • National Walk Your Dog Month
  • National Glaucoma Awareness Month
  • National Blood Donor Month
  • Cervical Cancer Awareness Month
  • National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month

Awareness Days in January 

No matter what you choose, these days are a great way to add some lighthearted fun and specificity to your January fundraising campaigns. Some good days in January to be aware of:

  • National Spaghetti Day, January 4, 2023
  • National Shortbread Day, January 6, 2023
  • National Popcorn Day, January 19, 2023
  • National Pie Day, January 23, 2023
  • National Reading Day, January 23, 2023
  • National Peanut Butter Day, January 24, 2023
  • National Compliment Day, January 24, 2023 (a great day to thank your donors)
  • National Kazoo Day, January 28, 2023
  • National Data Privacy Day,  January 28, 2023
  • National Puzzle Day, January 29, 2023
  • National Croissant Day, January 30, 2023
  • National Draw a Dinosaur Day, January 30, 2023
  • National Backwards Day, January 31, 2023

Incorporating January Awareness Days into Your Fundraising Campaign

You don’t have to do something for every single one of these awareness days. In fact, we suggest against it. If you oversaturate your messaging and take a scattershot approach, you can risk coming across as insincere and desperate.

Instead, pick a few that fit in with your nonprofit’s tone and message. 

Consider integrating your January fundraising campaigns with broader month-long awareness themes, like National Mentoring Month or National Blood Donor Month. 

Now, this is just an example, but even if your nonprofit isn’t directly related to blood donation, you can still host and sponsor a blood drive.

Not only does this associate you with a positive cause, but also it increases your visibility to those who’re interested in blood donation who might not have previously known of your nonprofit. 

Creating a month long fundraising campaign

Because some of these awareness themes span the whole month you can use them as an opportunity to organize a series of events or a multi-stage awareness campaign.

National Mentoring Month, for example, is broken up into four key days.

  • January 11th is I am a mentor day
  • January 16th is  Dr. Martin Luther King Day of Service
  • January 17th is International Mentoring Day
  • January 26th Thank Your Mentor Day

To make these awareness days easy to promote, there are preexisting toolkits and customizable materials that you can use. National Mentoring Month and National Blood Donor Month, for example, offer a host of customizable graphics, logos, and other assets that can help take some of the pressure off planning for that top-of-year fundraising push. 

An example for inspiration

Check out this great video from American Red Cross for #NationalBloodDonorMonth. This is a great example of a campaign that uses storytelling through video to inspire people to donate blood.


Leveraging the more playful awareness days for campaign success

We’ve spoken about identifying fundraising campaign themes in the past. 

You can think of some of the more fun awareness days, like National Popcorn Day or National Pie Day, to help you get started with your campaign ideation. 

You might use:

  • National Reading Day to promote new educational materials or an ebook,
  • for National Spaghetti Day you might host an all-you-can-eat spaghetti event,
  • or you might do a fun movie night for National Popcorn Day.
  • You could even just send your donors a kazoo on National Kazoo Day as a friendly reminder that you’re there as a nice bit of donor stewardship.

To further your reach with these events, you can partner with other organizations and local stakeholders, and vendors (such as food trucks) to create an even larger event, and can raise money through registration fees and merch. For instance, you might host a month-long walkathon for National Walk Your Dog month that is “brought to you by” or “sponsored by” you're nonprofit, giving you the opportunity to reach new potential donors.

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