Success Story

great plains food bank logo

Tripled their fundraising goal after switching from in-person to digital fundraising with Givecloud.

Surpassed overall fundraising goal by 200%.

Buy-in from their union who had initially pushed back.

100% of donations going toward their cause.

Their Unique Challenge:

Prior to 2021, the Help Santa Toy Parade campaigns primarily relied on in-person donations collected by firefighters during the annual parade. Toys were also collected on the parade route and at fire stations. Donations were in the form of change and cash, and were tallied at the end of the parade.

They also had a small digital presence with a PayPal click-to-donate button on their website, and used a cold-calling system. However, all of their efforts were trending downward in funds collected as a results of a decline in cash usage and spam call increases.

The final straw was when the pandemic hit, which prevented the parade from occurring in 2021. This meant Help Santa Toy Parade had to completely pivot and adopt digital methods of fundraising.

The Solution:

After having a conversation with Givecloud, Help Santa Toy Parade decided to make the transition to digital fundraising for their 2021 fundraising campaign.

They chose a donation form that engaged their audience and showed their impact in real time. Donors could choose to donate one toy, toys for an entire Christmas for one child, or enough toys for an entire family's Christmas.

While there was some initial pushback from the union in regard to adopting this new digital fundraising strategy, they were able to successfully implement their new donation experience and they set a fundraising goal:

"If we're able to raise $5,000.00, we'll be more than happy!"

After using Givecloud:

After adopting Givecloud and using our digital fundraising experience to overcome the challenge of needing to completely pivot from in-person to digital fundraising as a result of the pandemic, Help Santa Toy Parade were able to experience some amazing wins within their organization:


200% more than their initial goal.


buy-in from their union who were initially hesitant.


in annual value given to Toy Mountain.


of donations given to their cause.

What advice do you have for nonprofits who are struggling to get buy-in from their union, or other stakeholders?

Nail down the actual numbers and find an example of another organization that's similar to your own.

For us, when we were interested in going digital, we looked at Burlington Fire and their union. Their campaign had done super well and I took those numbers and went back to my own union and showed them. My union liked seeing this because it was another fire union and therefore a direct comparison.

Their union used tip tap for the, their muscular DYS campaign, and it went super duper well. Mm-hmm. Like 200% of expected. Well, so I took those numbers and I went back and I said, listen, like this is, this is definitely good. Obviously people like this, this is another fire union. You know, because sometimes these organizations are so insular that they only understand when it is a direct, uh, Like a direct comparison.

It's also helpful do to cost comparisons so they can see what you're currently doing, the cost, and the gain, compared to what you'd like to do, the cost, and the potential gain. If you can show that you will come out gaining more, then they can't argue with it.

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