Quick facts

Elementary SchoolType of Organization

$28,000.00Amount of Money Raised

478Number of Students

55.00%Participation Rate

Lebanon, OHLocation of Fundraiser

For the 3rd and 4th graders of Donovan Elementary School, field trips, an annual visit from a traveling hands-on science program and technology in the classrooms help broaden the horizons of the students.  Donovan’s fundraising campaign supports these and other important school projects.  Most years Donovan’s fundraiser is only big enough to cover our PTO budget.  This year, thanks to our partnership with Otis Spunkmeyer, our fundraiser not only covered our budget but enabled us to do a major renovation of our media center because our cookie dough fundraiser surpassed all of our goals for the year!

When I joined the fall fundraising committee at Donovan, I knew that we had two challenges. In Lebanon, OH, the students in each grade attend a school for only two years before moving on to the next school and each school has a different assigned fundraiser that they run every year. For Donovan it's always been cookie dough. But many of our parents, myself included, wanted a better quality cookie than the brand we had been selling for the past several years. We also wanted the flexibility to create a prize program that would excite our kids and their families. 

As a baker, I love cookies, but, like many of our parents, I didn't love the cookie dough that we had been selling. I love to bake homemade cookies with real ingredients. I didn't want to use a fundraiser with cookie dough that could sit out on the counter for a week or more!  It just didn’t sound right to me. To find the best cookie dough, the fundraising committee took a trip to the PTO expo, where we talked to at least 10 cookie dough fundraising vendors and tasted a lot of cookies!  When we stopped by the Otis Spunkmeyer booth, our Otis Spunkmeyer representative, Jeff, gave us samples to take home.  We knew we had found our cookie dough! 

The Otis cookies we tried were hands down the best tasting cookies out there. Our moms loved the high quality ingredients and the convenient individual cookie nuggets. After discovering how many options were available, and that Otis has a cookie that also supports cancer research, I knew we had found a cookie dough that we could be proud that our kids were selling.

Every year, we use our fundraising profits to bring a traveling science program to the school.  This year we were also raising funds to update our library media center, and after our state budget was cut, we needed to provide busses to take our kids on field trips. These programs provide a huge opportunity for our kids and we knew that we needed to get them really excited about participating in the fundraiser. Instead of the existing incentive programs, Jeff helped us use our budget to get t-shirts and tote bags. The kids loved that they could get a t-shirt with the school's name on it and we structured our incentives so that they would earn one by selling only 6 tubs of cookie dough. We had over 55% student participation in the fundraiser, and almost 80% of our participating kids got a t-shirt! 

The day before we launched our fundraiser, the PTO baked 1000 cookies, enough for every child and staff member at Donovan to have one fresh out of the oven. We kept the kids excited during our campaign by giving away a prize to someone at the school every day. Because we know that parents do a lot of the selling, we kept in contact with them through regular emails. Even though the fundraiser only lasted a week and a half, we raised almost twice as much money as last year, thanks to Otis's great cookie dough and food items and our incentive system!

The year before (pre-Otis) our retail was $44,735.  Last fall our retail with Otis was $70,050!!!!  That is a 56% increase in sales with 70 fewer students enrolled in the school.  We went from 39% participation without Otis to 55% with Otis.

Thanks to Otis Spunkmeyer, we don't have to ask our parents to do a second fundraiser because we raised over $28,000 in profit! With their high quality ingredients, great selection of cookie dough and bakery treats, reliable and efficient delivery system, and helpful and responsive representatives, Otis Spunkmeyer is hands down the best and most profitable cookie dough fundraiser we've ever run! Our fall Otis Spunkmeyer fundraiser met all our goals for the year!

Chris Brennan
Fundraising Chair
Donovan Elementary School
Lebanon, Ohio





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