Local, provincial and even national funding sources are available to help you stage your Bird Day event. Some funding deadlines to support a spring IMBD event may have passed. Many sources for funding require a charitable registration number.
Environment Canada keeps an online database on “Green Funding” sources that can be queried by geographical location and type of funding. For each source of funding, the database provides contact information, deadline dates, range of funding, types of projects, who can apply and a description of the fund.
Check out these organizations that fund community events.
The Gosling Foundation
TD Friends of the Environment Fund (FEF)
Business sponsors often want to support an event that brings them profile in their community, and associates them with something positive. Some sponsors may be happy simply having their name or logo on event materials, but other may want to have a hands-on presence during event day. Keep this in mind when approaching a potential sponsor.
When deciding who to approach, consider how a sponsor’s business profile matches the event and theme of birds and bird conservation. Companies related to optics, nature, outdoors, and technologies are all good places to start. When meeting with a sponsor, be sure to learn about their company, its mandate and history, before the meeting.
When explaining your event, be open to their ideas. Business sponsors will be interested in knowing their “return on investment.” Be prepared to have a forecast of the number of people that their logo, materials, and personnel could be exposed to. Let them know why your event is important, and why they should be excited, and exactly how their money will be used. When you ask for sponsorship be sure to include what they will receive in return (e.g. charitable donation tax reciept, logo placement on event material, opportunity to introduce speakers or activities, etc.). Don’t forget to thank them and provide your contact information.
Raise Your Own Funds
Here are some suggestions on how to raise money for your group.
Host a Walk-a-thon: Volunteers join your walk-a-thon and get sponsorship to complete the course, or for every kilometre they walk.
Resources to help you succeed: Environment for the Americas hosts a walk-a-thon every year to support conservation projects. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org and Environment for the Americas will provide you with all the planning tools and materials you need to get started! Variations: host a bird-a-thon and get sponsors to donate a flat rate, or an amount for every bird species you spot.
Bird Studies Canada’s Great Canadian Birdathon, formally known as the Baillie Birdathon is the oldest bird focused fundraiser in North America. The Birdathon challenge is to identify as many bird species as possible within a 24-hour period, during the month of May. The money raised benefits Bird Studies Canada, the James L Baillie Memorial Fund, and participating migration monitoring stations and conservation organizations (designated by participants to receive a portion of funds raised). Birdathon is an excellent fit with Bird Day, and a good way to raise funds for a local conservation organization.
In Quebec: « Grand défi Quebec Oiseaux » is an event organized by Regroupement QuébecOiseaux each year to correspond with International Migratory Bird Day. The idea is similar to birdathon – try and identify the highest number of species of birds from a fixed point within a 24 hour period. The objective of the activity is to raise funds for Regroupement QuébecOiseaux, the birding clubs of Quebec, and conservation groups that would use the funds for targeted conservation actions. For more information visit: Grand Défi Québec Oiseaux.
Have an idea to raise money that is not listed here? Tell us about it so we can share your great idea with other organizations.