PTA agreed to invest a sizeable chunk

TIP: If you give people the choice of several different things they will choose one; if you ask for one thing they will either do it or they won’t. So, hopefully, by giving people a choice, you will always get a ‘Yes!’.

£8,500 from John Shepherd estate agency

Publicity for the opening with local dignatories

The Mayor of Sollihul, Councillor Ken Hawkins declared the nursery garden officially open

wanted the grassed area to be replaced with an all-weather surface, an outside seated classroom area, a car track, various outside games and some vegetable planters. The total project would cost

£27,000 – the PTA agreed to fund part of that, while I needed to nd the rest. I had already approached a local estate agent about sponsorship and decided to test the water with this as my grand scheme, with a few smaller options as back-up. I did the WIFM test (what’s in it

for me?) with the manager, and he liked the idea of being involved in a substantial project, making a connection with both the school and the PTA, but more than that, he welcomed the publicity that would surround the project. I realised early on that something

like this would be newsworthy and if I could arrange a big ceremony for the opening, inviting along parents, sponsors and the Mayor, then this would generate positive publicity for all those involved. I also arranged a commemorative plaque that could be put on the building, since this seems to work for larger charities. From the sponsor’s point of view

it was a golden opportunity. It would give the company great exposure to the exact market where services could be sold, and would put the company above competitors because of their work with the school. In addition, they would receive a lot of free publicity and have a plaque on the building for years to come.

The donation was £8,500 and

marked the start of a long-lasting relationship. Since then we have received over £18,000 in further sponsorship and raised thousands more through support of the PTA ball, and stalls at PTA fairs. This demonstrates how to build a

mutually-benecial relationship with a sponsor. Getting money is great but if that’s all you aim to do, you are missing out. If you adopt a ‘smash and grab’ approach, you will forever be on a funding-request treadmill. Build a relationship and you will be surprised how, over time, the job gets easier and the rewards become greater. Good luck!

GRAEME BURGESS, Headteacher, Balsall Common Primary School

‘For many years I have been conscious of the fact that links with businesses and securing sponsorship could be very beneficial to pupils and the businesses themselves. This had always been on my to-do list, however, due to the many daily demands of Headship, the time required to persue this rigorously was never there. Having met Howard, I felt that his skills base was exactly what was required and so we agreed that he would take on the role on a part-time trial basis. Since then it has become clear to me that this is a role I would always want now in school. It may seem expensive initially, but the financial and curriculum benefits to the pupils that the role brings pay for the salary many times over!’

'This is why I do this job!' Howard makes sure that the new play equipment gets the thumbs up from pupils

A commemorative plaque gives ongoing acknowledgement to the sponsors: the PTA and John Shepherd estate agency

Coming up next issue... In the summer issue (out 30 June) Howard provides advice for drafting a successful sponsorship proposal.

FundEd SPRING 2016 43

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