Approaching BAE Systems and Google about Sponsorship

Hey Cheif Delphi!

I am currently a member of a rising rookie team from Northern California. My team is trying to fund for the FIRST Initial Regional Event, knowing that there is not much time left. My team held a parents meeting and distributed sponsor letters to parents who work for technological companies; however, we are still in need of much funding.
My team and I have been struggling with fundraising for months now. I’ve heard that several teams were able to receive sponsorships from BAE Systems and Google last year. I was wondering if anyone has knowledge about receiving these sponsorships. Although my team has been working hard for this technological opportunity to be successful, we still need a large amount of money to participate in the FRC. Does anyone have any advice?

Thank you so much for your time!

Britney :slight_smile:

I can’t comment about Google or BAE but I can make a suggestion, broaden your search. Tech companies are great but local companies love getting involved with FRC type stuff. Yeah it isn’t a $20,000 lump of cash but $500 pays for extra parts for the robot. $200 can pay for shirts. Every little bit helps.

I believe BAE’s deadline for funding requests had passed.

(Anyone feel free to correct me if I’m wrong).

Hey guys,

Andrew:
This team has tried to contact both local and huge companies; however, we weren’t able to accumulate much funding. We’ll continue to broaden our searches. Thanks for your suggestion!

Akash:
Though it’s a shame that we missed the funding deadline, thanks for notifying me of BAE System’s deadline!

Thank you both for replying!

Britney

I’d like to welcome you to Chief Delphi! I’ve found that it’s a great place with a lot of helpful people.

I can empathize with the search for funding. Our team has been working very hard to raise money. We weren’t at all sure until about a week and a half ago that we would be able to attend our regional. For months, I had visions of paying at the last minute.

As Akash mentioned, the deadline has passed for BAE. The application instructions are here - http://www.baesystemsfirst.org/regional/pdf/grants.pdf Perhaps you can put together a team calendar specifically for fund raising and include BAE for July.

Our team has pretty much tried it all. We’ve written donor letters requesting funds. We’ve approached area businesses. We’ve had tag sales and sold Tupperware. (Don’t laugh too hard about the Tupperware, the turnaround on getting your check is faster than many other organizations.) We had a demo at the county fair and put out a donation jar. We’ve written grant applications. We put a PayPal button on our webpage.

I know that teams have tried all sorts of creative fund techniques. Perhaps you could ask a Barnes & Noble if you could have a fund raising day? One team recently posted their B&N fund raiser information here on CD. If that won’t work, maybe your team could man the gift wrap station at the bookstore and collect donations? When I was shopping on Black Friday, there was a charitable organization doing just that.

Could you organize a Lego building party for local children one evening so parents could shop without children in tow? One of our local private schools used to do that. The kids loved it, parents happily paid and the school wasn’t using the space in the evening so it was a win/win situation.

Have you considered the ever popular pasta dinner? There’s some useful information on the NEMO site here: http://www.firstnemo.org/resources.htm

I know there’s not a lot of time so perhaps the first task might be asking FIRST for an extension. I tried to find the post where someone mentioned being granted one until the middle? of December.

Good luck! I hope that something comes through for you soon. I know I’ve been going to our team mailbox for a couple weeks now hoping that a promised donation will be there. Hopefully a donation will come through for you too.

Trying to Help

And, to give you even more help finding funding, we have an entire subforum on the topic, with at least one almost exhaustive list (like there can be such a thing).

Some of the ideas can be kind of off-the-wall, but we do have this little saying about “crazy enough to work”.

First off. Welcome to the family! :smiley:

I know that my team hold fundraisers. Everything we can think of. Bake sales, carwashes, raking leaves, baby sitting.

Another thing we did was hold a game night and sold candy and drinks. Invite friends and family.

We had a local co-op allow pies in our team mates face. (Oh the joys is in the little things. :smiley: )

Hope that helped!

-Rion

Britney (and anyone else in a similar situation) -

I highly recommend contacting your Regional Director if you are stuggling for funding… Actually, I highly recommend contacting your Regional Director just to introduce yourself.

The Regional Directors can be a great resource for many things. While they are typically over worked and very busy, they can help you sort out things like sponsorships. They may not have immediate leads or funding for you, but they may know of organizations interested in sponsoring a team or may be able to find some as they go about meeting new people and organizations.

You can find your Regional Director on FIRST’s Contact Us page: http://www.usfirst.org/regionalcontact.aspx

You also might want to try selling Hex Bugs from Innovation First. You make a decent profit, they are cheap enough to sell and with Christmas right around the corner, they make great stocking stuffers.

1817 has been selling hexbugs for the past year or so with good results, but you do need the capital to buy them upfront. Now we try to buy the cap on the p-card, ~5k, and that lasts 5-8 months depending on how many events we do.

Here’s the details: http://www.hexbug.com/fundraising

We have sold the Original, Crab, and Inchworm in the past and just as a note the inchworms outsell the Original and Crabs combined, so keep that in mind when ordering.

We just got our restocking shipment for this year including a few test cases of Nano’s and Ant’s–looking forward to see how the new guys sell at this Friday’s art walk.

Hello:

Trying to Help:
Thank you for the welcome! I’m glad that your team was able to achieve the necessary payment for the Initial Regional! :slight_smile: Your team deserves to gain the money after all that fundraising. I’ll consider asking Barnes & Noble as well as Borders about the gift wrapping. A Lego building party would be a splendid fundraising idea! Although it may be difficult to organize, our school has an Elementary campus, so that makes it more convenient. As for the pasta dinner, maybe we’ll ask a restaurants to provide some pasta for fundraising. Thank you so much for the great ideas! I’ll try to ask FIRST about an extension for the deadline. Thanks!!! :smiley:

Eric:
Thank you for the fundraisng reference link. It’s never a bad thing to have many fundraising ideas! Haha, crazy can be good at times.

Formerly Famous:
I feel welcomed! : The game night idea is great, but it may be difficult to find enough games to entertain people. Our school is really strict too, so the pie idea might not get passed by the principal. ]: Thank you for your suggestions.

Michael Sperber:
Thankfully, this team has already been introduced to Jim Beck, a Western Regional Director. He’s currently trying to find sponsors. He knows that we’re a rookie team that needs funding, so hopefully he’ll pull through.

Yodameister and RaMoore:
Our team is currently selling Hexbugs and Nano bugs! They are AMAZING for fundraising. In fact, most of the money we raise came from selling these awesome toys.

Thank you for responding to this thread!

Britney

Britney,

One thing that I highly suggest is a movie mixer. we made 1.5K in a night doing it.

Here’s what we basically did:

-Talked to local theater to less us borrow a room for one movie for free.
-Presale movie tickets for $20 bucks to community leaders and sponsors (We have over 120 sponsors, so its easy)
-Ticket includes: dinner of some sort, wine (donated), chips (donated), and soda (donated)
-Raffle gift bags donated by the parents for $1 a ticket. We made nearly $500 from the raffles.
-Also make sure to do a good movie.

If you need any more info, please feel free to IM or Email me. We do the movie mixer three times a year.

-RC

RC:

so the movie mixer your team did was for adults only? Raffle gift bags sounds like a really interesting idea. Can you give me more details on this? What movie did your team do?

RC: Thank you RC!! Mo will get back to you. :smiley:

Mo:
Hey Momo! I just shortened my name! It was funny to see your reaction when I said that BritneyFox is my account. I didn’t think you would reply to my thread! :

OMG! Missy, put our team number on your profile!!!

You are confusing me!

Ohh, sorry Mo! I’ll do that now.

Hey 3156 :slight_smile: First off, welcome to CD and FIRST.

Definitely follow RC’s advice about the movie theater demo. It is a sustainable fundraiser that can be done every year and multiple times a year at a very low overhead cost. Team 11 and 1323 both do these types of events and it raises quite the penny.

Quick fundraisers are the best in times of quick profit needs: carwashes, bake sales, pizza sales at school (sell a slice for 1.50 at the end of the school day). In a school of about 1300 kids we go through 10-12 pies of pizza per day. And that’s just plain pizza! :open_mouth:

PM me for more help. Good luck this season, I know you guys will do great.

Hi Akash!

Thank you thank you! :slight_smile:
We’ll definitely consider doing the movie theater fundraiser. Just have to find the place and organize it.
We’re currently selling donuts, hot coco, cinnamon rolls, and hot tea every morning in our school. Although it’s not making as much as we had hoped, every dollar counts!
I’m very grateful for your faith in us!

Britney

One important thing to keep in mind when applying for the BAE Systems grant is that in the past there has been a requirement that you must attend a BAE Systems sponsored regional tournament (the purpose of the grant is to help offset registration fees). Exceptions are made to this rule (ie: if you have mentors from BAE Systems but live far away from a BAE Systems sponsored regional). It’s still worth it to investigate in the summer in case the rules change. Good Luck!

Hi…
I work for BAE Systems locally (Norfolk, Va.) and they have been great with helping sponsor teams (they help sponsor the team I mentor on (1610)This coming year (and perhaps afterwards) BAE’s
involvement with FIRST might change. Walt Havenstein who was president
of BAE (N.A.) retired this past year. Mr. Havenstein was a big supporter of
FIRST. The new president is not as keen on FIRST as was Mr. Havenstein
and I have heard BAE’s involvement with FIRST may only be kept at the present
level and not expanded. Only time will tell.