Competitive Fundraising: IndianaFIRST in Brackets for Good Championship

Thanks to many supporters (both local to Indiana and from as far away as California), IndianaFIRST is now in the CHAMPIONSHIP round of Brackets for Good.

Here are some updated statistics from our Brackets for Good progress so far:

Round 1: 2,750 points scored by local key volunteers and alumni, who worked hard to ensure that we would make it to Round 2.

Round 2: 1,326 points scored by people helping us out as we spread the word via social media.

Round 3: 3,289 points scored by people mostly donating to IndianaFIRST FRC teams.

Round 4: 6,199 points scored, mostly at the Walker Warren and Perry competitions. Once again, teams stepped it up and used Brackets for Good as a fundraising opportunity.

Round 5: 6,696 points scored! With a tight margin of just 76 points, IndianaFIRST makes it to the final and 6th round of Brackets for Good.

Total points scored: 20,525, with a large percentage of that going directly to IndianaFIRST teams when the tournament is complete.

Total donations made: 237

If you thought Tuesday night’s last few moments of the competition were intense, then get ready for Friday evening, because it’s bound to be even more extreme.

Our opponent this round is the Joseph Maley Foundation, a nonprofit organization that is way bigger than us and has a lot of support behind them. They have AVERAGED over $8,933 points per round, and we KNOW that they are nowhere near tapped out.

So what are we fighting for this round?

We are fighting to win an extra $10,000 that we will use to benefit our IndianaFIRST teams and students.

We are fighting to prove that STEM extracurriculars like FIRST are worth recognizing on a larger scale than they currently are.

We are fighting to bring in more P.R., more networking opportunities, more sponsorship and more mentors for our IndianaFIRST teams.

Please help us win the whole tournament. We want to bring home the Brackets for Good Blue Banner and Trophy!

No April Fools joke here, #FriendsWithRobots.

Today is the absolute final day for our Brackets for Good tournament. IndianaFIRST has a slight lead over the Joseph Maley Foundation (a worthy opponent!). We have a couple last second moves in our playbook, but they are a large nonprofit organization with a lot of support, so we are certain that they have some huge donations they can pull out in the last few moments.

We need your help still. Please donate what you can. We won the last round by a margin of $76. If you have time now, please consider scoring points for us. If you have time later, watch at 7:45 PM Eastern time to cheer us on and score points last minute.

We would really love if you could specifically support a team or three. When making your donation, indicate in the memo line which team your donation should go to. IndianaFIRST will properly allocate that donation to the team of your choice!

Want to donate to rookies? Teams 5944 and 6012 would really appreciate it!

Want to help pay for a team’s registration for the State Championship and maybe help them on their way to the World Championship? Look at the top 32 teams on this list:

IndianaFIRST FRC teams, make your elevator pitch below, for why someone should donate to YOUR team in Brackets for Good!

Harrison Boiler Robotics would greatly appreciate if you could take a moment to fill a memo line with ‘1747’

Part of team #morethanrobots?

Here’s 38,111 reasons we could use your donation:

Help us on our mission to put a bristle bot in the hands of every Cub Scout at Cary Camp. Help us travel and bring FIRST to the Museum of Science and Industry during national Robotics Week. Help support the nine demos in two states we already have planned for 2016. #SpoilerAlert, help us as we work with schools in other countries to expand their FLL programs to include FRC. We have big, big dreams and bigger plans to achieve them.

Every dollar counts and every share helps.
Are you #friendswithrobots?

The seniors of our team set out on a mission in August. Their goal? World Championships. Seniors of years gone by have left their mark on places like Washington DC and New York City. We want to see St. Louis. We have amazing sponsors who have helped us attend three districts already but our next stop is State Championships and hopefully after that, Worlds.

But the bigger picture is that we need to have a team next year and every dollar with 1747 in the memo line helps. We have a robot that may help us achieve one side of the dream. Can you help make the other half possible?

Every dollar counts and every share helps.

Team 1024, the Kil-A-Bytes have had an amazing start to their season. We are currently ranked 1st in the IndianaFIRST district. We are excited to compete in the upcoming State Championship event, as well as hopefully earning a place to compete at the World Championship. Our eye-catching neon yellow and bold blue robot crosses any defense in its path and scores boulders high with the aid of a photon cannon. But we are way more than our robot.

Our team Core Values are:

Collaboration with students, mentors, and STEAM professionals;

Excellence in individual student achievement, communication skills, and a highly competitive robot design and strategy; and

Empowerment through respect for others (including opponents), growth in self-confidence, and leadership skills.

We strive to live these values in all that we do, including: co-hosting IRI; inspiring STEM appreciate at Maker Faire, Celebrate Science, and the Community North Health Fair; running VEX summer camps; and many other activities throughout the year.

We could use your help. Attending the State Championship and (hopefully) World Championship is expensive. We are currently trying to raise enough funding for both. Please donate to IndianaFIRST in Brackets for Good, and put 1024 in the memo line.

Although I’m a mentor for 1024, I’ve also mentored 4580 a little bit this year. They asked me to post the following for them:

4580, the Conductors, is a small robotics team from Ben Davis High School. Our motto this year is “Little Team, Big Impact.”

This is our 4th year in FIRST, but our first really successful competition season. At the Walker Warren District event we were actually an alliance captain (before this we had never made it into the elimination rounds before!), and then at the Perry Meridian District event we won our very first award, the Industrial Design Award.

For the first time ever, we are headed to the State Championship event.

We only have about 12 students on our team, and slightly under 80% of Wayne Township is qualified for free and reduced lunch, which accurately represents our team. That doesn’t stop us from making big impact. With an average GPA of 4.45, our students are going places.

We mentor younger students in our district through our WiRES program, which introduces elementary and middle school students to STEM and Robotic activities. We hosted and managed a VEX IQ event, which all of our FRC students participated in. We partnered with the Astronomy Club for Space Day activities.

We could really really use your assistance. Our team is on a roll, and we want to continue growing and making an impact. Your donation to Brackets for Good for team 4580 will help us expand our program and continue our newfound success.

Not gonna put a huge post about our team just that Goat’s rock. Please consider us when donating. Put 829 in the memo. Thanks

If you’re following this thread and competition:

Our opponents just jumped way ahead with a big dump of $2,500. If you can help us out, or know someone who can, please do:

Just like in robots, we don’t like to lose matches. Any amount helps.

So, since we’ve been off for a week and the Indiana State Championship isn’t for another two weeks, I guess we’ll breakdown the Indiana FIRST run through the Brackets for Good tournament.

So far, 26 of Indiana’s 49 teams have benefited from the fundraising opportunities through Brackets for Good. Good job to teams 234, 1024, 1741, 3176, and 4926 for raising over $750 each! As for the other 44 Indiana teams, each and every one of them could use your help if you plan on donating. Any and every dollar donated will be greatly appreciated.

As Indiana FIRST has moved through the tournament, we’ve enlisted more and more help from the community (that includes you loyal Chief followers). So far, 14% of all of the donations have come from outside of the state. Hopefully, with the final round currently down to the last 8 hours, we can increase that percentage. For those who have donated from out of state, THANK YOU! Your help is greatly appreciated!

So again, if you’d like to help donate, you can do so at:
And include the team name and number for your favorite Indiana team to help support your favorite team and help Indiana FIRST in the competition to win $10,000!

Having worked with numerous teams throughout the state, our 2 rookies are examples of what Indiana can do with limited resources and sponsors within the state. With almost every Indianapolis high school having a FIRST Robotics Competition team, we’ve needed to start branching out to rural high schools for new rookie teams. Most of the rural high schools are much smaller and have a harder time sustaining teams.

5944 and 6012 can break the mold, but need your help.

Please consider donating to our rookies and other low-resource rural teams (3180, 4781, 5402, and 5403 immediately come to mind). Every little bit helps.

See that bit at the end? That’s us. FRC1529 has been around since 2005, and as Nick said on GameSense, the CyberCards have a history of not playing eliminations.
This year, things are a bit different. Our team grew over the summer from 18 to 45 students; we went from one to seven mentors; the past four district events we were playing in eliminations, reaching SF twice. We’ve expanded our outreach to over three dozen events beyond co-hosting our annual offseason event, the CAGE Match. For the first time ever, we feel like we have a robot and a team ready to join our #friendsWithRobots at The Big Show in STL.
Also, we are hugely supportive and involved with IndianaFIRST. The BFG program has given us a great platform to reach a new partner base, and we’d really love to get the $10k bonus to share with all our #friendsWithRobots.
So please consider typing FRC1529 in the memo as you support IndianaFIRST today.

With a little more than 3 hours to go, we are behind, but donations keep coming in from all over the world.

We have had requests to pass on donations to teams in financial need, rural teams, urban teams, and many specific teams.

Thank you to all who have donated. Keep watch over the next three hours! We may be behind, but we aren’t out of the game yet.

It’s almost time for the Buzzer Beaters!

At 7:45, we will see where we match up for the last 15 minutes of the tournament.

Keep calm. Donate money in the last minute!

We would like to offer a sincere thank you to everyone who helped us in our Brackets for Good quest.

Overall we raised over $35,600, with about $20,000 of that going back to IndianaFIRST teams. There was a total of 362 donations made over the course of 5 weeks. We don’t have the numbers for what each individual team earned, but we hope to have that data out in the next couple days.

Through our participation in Brackets for Good, we had many networking and PR opportunities to help spread awareness of our program. On Tuesday, our Executive Director Renee Becker-Blau gave a great elevator speech about FIRST on IndyStyle, a local television news program. Check out her one minute of fame here:

Brackets for Good this year was located in the following areas:
Twin Cities
St. Louis
Ann Arbor

We hope that our success in participating in this program encourages other local nonprofit status FIRST organizations to apply to be part of the Brackets for Good tournaments next year.