St. Benedict Preparatory School is no stranger to fundraising. As one of the largest Catholic schools in Chicago, IL, it takes a lot to fully fund their budget, and they're constantly looking for proven fundraisers to do it.
Prior to partnering with Boosterthon, St. Benedict held a Wreath and Wrap Sale that generated around $40,000. These funds went towards community-building events such as the Father-Daughter Dance, Mother-Son Dance, and Teacher Appreciation activities.
But St. Benedict wanted a change. Their Wreath and Wrap Sale required a ton of volunteers to run—from collecting the money, to ordering and distributing the wreaths. They were tired of asking their parents to sell stuff. They wanted a fundraiser that actually included their students.
So in 2015 they partnered with Boosterthon.
Admittedly, Rachel Waldron, Head of Early Childhood, was skeptical if it would work. That is, until she experienced her first Boosterthon program.
“I was on the fence about the entire thing up until our first Fun Run ended!” she said. “There were so many moving parts to coordinate and so many kids running at the same time. Plus, we had parents and relatives there to watch. But the Boosterthon team handled it all in stride. They kept the kids running and everyone’s energy up. Thanks to them, we successfully raised a lot of money for the school.”
Rachel wasn’t kidding. In just two short years, Boosterthon has helped St. Benedict profit over $200,000!
“The profit from Boosterthon went above and beyond our expectations, and our students learning has definitely been enriched as a result!” said Rachel.
What has St. Benedict purchased with their Boosterthon funds?
With the Boosterthon, St. Benedict has been able to fund numerous classroom resources such as interactive projectors and SMART boards. They also funded technology upgrades to support student learning.
In addition, St. Ben’s Boosterthon money also funded their new preschool playground, which was absolutely needed. (And the students love it!) This year, the HSA also put together a Teacher Grant program (which they plan to continue into the future) where the teachers can write a grant for up to $1,000 to go towards classroom or grade-wide resources.
With this program they’ve been able to provide a ton of educational resources:
- Osmo Genius Kit for use with iPads for their preschool classrooms
- More manipulatives for their Kindergarten Language Arts program
- A subscription to RazzKids for first, second, and third grade
- Science kit upgrades for fourth and fifth grade
- Additional Legos for their robotics class, electronic balances and incubators for the Science lab, and technology upgrades for the middle school
- New instruments, including a gathering drum, for their Early Childhood Music teacher
- Two iPads with Dot and Dash robots for their Elementary Technology Teacher
How has their school benefited from these extra resources?
According to Rachel, “Our teachers are using these resources on a daily basis to enrich their curriculum. The students really enjoy all of the new materials that they’ve been given, and the teachers have been so eager to incorporate them into their daily routine and lesson plan.”
But besides the stellar financial results, Rachel and St. Ben’s appreciate the inclusive nature of the program.
“In the past, the wreath and wrap sale often involved their parents asking co-workers or local relatives to buy, but now the kids are actively involved in the program. Plus, they’re able to involve their family and friends from all over the world!”
What else did they get out of the Boosterthon program?
Additionally, they love how Boosterthon’s program builds community and fosters school spirit.
“We love that it builds school spirit—our students proudly wear their shirts and run their laps to help our school. The Fun Run itself helps to build community; many parents and supporters come out and cheer on the students. The kids are always so proud of their accomplishments, and they wear their shirts long after the Fun Run is over,” she said.
When asked why St. Benedict continues to partner with Boosterthon year after year, Rachel pointed to the legendary Boosterthon team.
“We’ve had two financially successful Fun Runs so far. Plus, our experience with the Boosterthon team has also been amazing. The team is helpful, they listen to our feedback, and they’ve implemented all of our requests. Our on-campus team always seems to connect with the kids, and our students truly enjoy their experience.”
When asked what she would say to a school who's on the fence about partnering with Boosterthon, Rachel had this to say:
“I would strongly suggest choosing to have the team on campus every day from beginning to end. I attribute much of our financial success, the energy and enthusiasm, and the seamless running of the program to their presence on campus.”
Want to see more case studies about how Boosterthon’s program has helped schools like yours raise more and stress less? Check out these two on the blog!