Raising Philanthropy Awareness in a Record-Breaking Way
What is flapitude? It’s the “attitude of gratitude” displayed by 407 students, faculty and staff who gathered to flap their arms for five straight minutes to show their thanks for the university’s scholarship donors – a feat that, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, had never before been accomplished.
“We used the flapitude event to launch a new scholarship initiative on campus,” says Molly Robbins, Executive Director of The Saint Joseph’s Fund. “We thought it would help raise awareness about the impact of giving and allow us to thank our donors in the process. Our mascot (the hawk) never stops flapping just like we hope that our alumni will never stop being part of our community and never stop supporting the university.”
As they hoped, people did show up and word spread quickly afterward. In fact, it was featured on ESPN’s play of the day and an adjudicator from Guinness was in attendance to make sure that it was accurately recorded for the books.
But even though the event was a big success, it left the university with some important questions to consider. If inspiring a culture of philanthropy involves broadening awareness about the impact of giving, what else does it involve? And, while flapitude may be a good start, what else needs to be done to keep alumni engaged and supporting their alma mater year after year?
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