Seven Creative Ways to Fundraise

Ride for Roswell is almost here! Check out our seven tips to help you reach and exceed your fundraising goals while having fun doing it.

1) Get social.

They don’t call it social media for nothing. Share your fundraising page on all your social platforms to spread the word that you’re raising funds to end cancer.

2) Tap into tech.

When it comes to fundraising, there are tons of ways to use technology to your advantage. Try going live on social media and talking about fundraising, make a video asking for donations or live stream on a platform like Twitch and share your Ride for Roswell fundraising link in your stream. 

3) Be daring.

Use your fundraising as an opportunity to challenge yourself to get outside your comfort zone. Do a pushup for every dollar you raise. Make an origami swan each time someone donates. Whatever you choose, make it a challenge that will get people buzzing.

4) Play to your strengths.

Everyone’s good at something. By playing to your strengths — be it crafting, singing, running or anything else — you can take your fundraising to the next level.

5) Make it an event.

Fundraising can really bring people together. Try hosting an event like a dinner, jam session or art class where the proceeds go toward your fundraising goal. Just be safe and follow recommended COVID-19 precautions.

6) Find a community partner.

Visit local businesses and ask them about ways they can help raise funds for your Ride. They may donate, match your donation or offer you a space to promote your Ride.

Click here to see if your business has a matching gift program.

7) Tell a friend (or 10).

Nothing beats word of mouth. Tell your friends and family what you’re doing and ask them to spread the word! You can also talk to other riders for more inspiration.

Featured Team: Desmond Strong

Why does your team ride in the Ride for Roswell?

We ride for my 8 year old son Desmond. He survived high risk t-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia and rang the bell in April 2021. We also ride for all the pediatric cancer patients.

Team photo with Ride lawn sign

What is your favorite part about Ride Weekend?

The Opening Ceremony is always so memorable and powerful for me. I cry tears of happiness for the survivors and wish for hope for all those still on their cancer journey. And I remember all those friends that have passed before us from this terrible disease.

What does leading a team mean to you?

Leading a team with my son by my side throughout his treatment, during a global pandemic, AND then last year as a survivor has meant the world to me. I want the community to see that our story provides hope and love for all that are traveling down a path with a cancer diagnosis. As a single mother, watching the strength of my son (who was 5 at time of diagnosis) is something I can never fully describe with words. I carry his strength with me as I lead a team for the Ride every year.

Featured Rider: Barbara Gilmartin-Przybyla

Why do you participate in the Ride for Roswell?

To help raise funds to fight this terrible disease which has taken far too many lives including my Dad, family members and many friends. I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in March 2021 as well as suffered a stroke four months later. I previously had Malignant Melanoma over 30 years ago, thankfully diagnosed very early.

My boyfriend Jim worked with me to get back in the saddle as I was determined to ride in 2021, roughly a month after the stroke. We both reached the Extra Mile level in 2021 and are shooting for the Peloton in 2022! I never imagined Cancer would happen to me. I am very active, eat well and was into the first year of my retirement when I went for my yearly Mammogram. I am so very thankful to my Doctors and the Staff at Roswell … I am here today, recently celebrating another birthday and prepping for the 2022 Ride For Roswell. I will also continue share my journey with friends and family … about 20 friends scheduled their Mammograms with good results!! Jim and my daughters Kristin and Kathryn have been my rocks during this journey. I hope to be there for anyone who needs support or just a friend!

Barbara with partner
Barbara with partner

What is your favorite part about Ride weekend?

For several years I volunteered on race day at the start gate or rode. Always exciting to cheer on the participants! The opening ceremonies including watching the Peloton riders arrive at UB was very emotional for me in 2021, just months after going through a whirlwind of being diagnosed, surgery, treatments and subsequent stroke. The feel of “community” was so prevalent!

What have you been doing to raise funds for the Ride?

I started fundraising on my birthday in January via Facebook and Instagram. I will continue to update on social media and will plan a fundraising event.

Getting more time, thanks to cutting-edge treatments at Roswell Park

James Ace and his wife, Carol, own a restaurant in Belfast, New York, where they’ve been serving their neighbors for the last 40+ years. The past 10 years of James’ life have been blessed with grandchildren and great grandchildren whom he has been so delighted to get to know.

If it hadn’t been for Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, he believes he would have missed out on getting to know them. Without donor support, patients like James would have far less access to lifesaving advancements like the one that saved James’ life.

Cancer entered James’ life 10 years ago, bringing him to Roswell Park. Clinicians found “horribly aggressive cancer in his right kidney,” with very limited treatment options, according to James’ longtime doctor Thomas Schwaab, MD, PhD, and The William and Nancy Gacioch Family Endowed Chair in Translational Research.

“This man had no other chance but trying something cutting-edge, something completely new, something completely out of the box. Something you really can’t get anywhere else but a place like Roswell Park,” Dr. Schwaab said.

Breakthroughs in research and advances in treatment at Roswell Park gave James hope. Dr. Schwaab collaborated with Anurag Singh, MD, Director of Radiation Research to give James his best chance. Dr. Singh was studying a novel approach to radiation at the time called stereotactic body radiation therapy which concentrates on the center of the tumor instead of a larger area, which was more typical at the time and still is in many cases. This was a research project that was funded thanks to donations to the Roswell Park Alliance Foundation.

James and Carol were all in. “What other choice did we have at the time?” Carol asked. “It was that or just go home and die, and I think that was just an opportunity that was presented to us that we had to take.”

Four weeks after radiation, Dr. Singh’s innovative approach allowed Dr. Schwaab to completely remove the cancer from James’ kidney. He still followed through with chemotherapy and new immunotherapy options, but James’ once daunting diagnosis was behind him. To this day, James’ kidneys are “still looking good,” Dr. Schwaab confirmed.

“It just makes you feel like it was worth it to keep going,” James remembered. “I don’t know how many times I wanted to give up if it weren’t for [my Roswell Park doctors] who kept me going.”

Breakthroughs, like Dr. Singh’s innovative discovery, in cancer research and treatment are made possible by donors.

“He was one of the first people that we treated like this,” said Dr. Singh. “James Ace participating in this study has had an impact on kidney cancer patients throughout the world … He had the confidence that we could do what we were saying and that actually gave us confidence, as well.” What was once a bold step forward, funded through passionate philanthropy, is now saving lives on a regular basis.

That is the power of making a gift to Roswell Park.

Featured Team: #inittoWINNit

Why does your team ride in the Ride for Roswell?

One of our riders has cancer and is going through treatments as we speak. Ron was the reasons we all started to ride. We also ride for all the family and friends who have battled cancer and won and those who have battle hard until the end.

What is your favorite part about Ride Weekend?

I rode in the Peloton last year –  what an amazing experience!

What does leading a team mean to you?

It is emotional. Last year was my first time and I was overwhelmed with emotions by the stories and reasons people formed teams.

Featured Rider: Lindsey Darin

Why do you participate in the Ride for Roswell?

My cousin and I signed up for our first Ride after our uncle was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. After that first experience, I was hooked! It’s such a great, well-organized event that it would be hard to not participate for my loved ones every year. Plus, it’s a great way to stay in shape!

What is your favorite part about Ride weekend?

The Peloton! My first Peloton experience was back when we rode through the UB football stadium and I felt like a celebrity. It was such an amazing experience.  And every year, it’s still the same feeling. From the emotional send-off at Roswell, to the police escorts, to the Celebration of Hope – it’s all so worth it!

What have you been doing to raise funds for the Ride?

My family, friends, and co-workers continue to amaze me each year with their generosity. I am always blown away that even after so many years, they all continue to support me! Right after I sign up for the Ride, I usually send an email through my Ride for Roswell dashboard, and lately I have been connecting and sharing my Ride website to Facebook to get a few more donations, too.