Tuesday, August 01, 2006

[Community] Blogathon recap

Before I forget the pain.

Some of you may know that I recently completed a Blogathon for Charity. Incase anyone is thinking of it for next year, I wanted to report here that Blogathonning is tough. Really tough. Much tougher than I could ever in a million years have imagined. Despite my blogging experience. I struggled with it. I was stressed, I was emotional, I felt frustrated at not being able to answer all the comments that were left for me, etc. it took its toll. I don't want people to be put off, but you need to go in with your eyes open. Email me with questions, or for more advice, nearer the time if you want to take part next year.

Why did I take part? Well, I had originally wanted to launch an August charity event for all food bloggers to join in with, if they so wanted, called "8-Dinner". My idea, such that it was, was that perhaps food bloggers could host dinner parties, or picnics, or buffets, or whatever, to raise money for the charity of their choice, during the month of August. The idea was that people would host and provide a wonderful spread of free food and then the guests would make a donation, to the value of a restaurant meal, or more, or whatever to the chosen charity.

And so I was meaning to organise this, but I never got round to doing it, because when I found out about the blogathon, I was seduced into taking part in that instead.

But what do people think of the 8-dinner idea? I am going to be talking to the Blogathon organiser about perhaps running a side-event alongside the blogathon, using their model of donating to individual charities, as per each individual bloggers choice. And that is one idea.

But on the other hand, perhaps group charity events, especially within a single community can lead to oversaturation of good deeds happening with a result that people get fed up with it in the end? I don't know, I am just putting these questions out there for mulling over. I am not sure if Pim will be doing a Menu for Hope again this year, I'm all for it, but I am not sure if I can take part, at least not to the extent I did last year, maybe I need to move on to something different, yet again. Or maybe I just need to calm down and be less enthusiastic about my involvement, though of course my personality would not rest easily if I did not give it my all.

These these things squeezed every last drop of effort out of me to the point where it would be difficult to try and follow what I have done before. I am wondering if the only way forward is to always do something different each time?

One thing that is clear to me is that it is great to be able to use ones blog to do some power of good in the world, and I don't want to put an end to that for a minute.

OK I will stop rambling now.
Any thoughts anyone else?

This Post was written by sam from becks & Posh


anni said...

Sam -
You did an amazing job on Saturday! I followed your progress through the day and felt your emotions.
You raised over $2,500!!! You were inspiring! I wanted to participate. I admire your courage, commitment, creativity and stamina!
You did well!
I'd be very interested in participating in a "8-dinner" event. Let me know how I can help.

Anni :-)

Ellen said...

There was a charity program I ran into last year that used this same idea for fundraising. I thought it was Second Harvest but couldn't find anything on their web site. Fantastic idea anyway.

Sam said...

well epicurious just announced in their newsletter today (talk about timing!) that they are doing a similar thing as 8-Dinner, so i guess it wasnt such an original concept after all.

thanks to Alanna Kellogg for alerting me to that too.

Garrett said...

Congrats on doing the blogathon. It was truly amazing.
As for an oversaturation, it all depends on timing and ensuring beforehand that you have at least some garaunteed minimum of people so that other donors/attendees don't feel singled out.

Maybe a dollar drop pot at the food bloggers picnic? Or simply teaming up with some local bakeries/delis/etc. who will hold dollar drop jars? They get a small stint of publicity on a bunch of local blogs, and all they have to do is put the jar out.

I work at a non-profit and we face the fund-raising issue often enough here. Our Vanlentine Day Dance and Auction is usually our top fundraiser. Maybe check with other food bloggers and chefs and see if they would put up something for auction?

Sam said...

good points garret.

I expect Pim will be doing something along these lines with menu for hope again, but I am not sure.

The over-saturation thing is what I worry about the most - and the choice of charity.

Last year I managed to get several local business to donate prizes and I was very greatful.

One of them offered me another prize for next time, and I might take them up on it for the next menu for hope, if it goes ahead. I think I had too many prizes last year and I am not sure I raised enough money to justify the kindness of all the generous sponsors.

Emily Stone said...

These are all great ideas! I'm sorry that I missed the blogathon, but I'd love to participate in a blogging charity event in the future. Please add me (EmilyStone200[at]hotmail[dot]com) to any mailing lists you have for such events!

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