Fundraise: How Fundraising Works


Fundraising Reduces Your Costs

The funds you raise are first applied to your deposit and participation fee. If you receive enough donations to cover some of your participation fee, you will only need to pay Buds to Blossoms the part of your fee that is not covered by the donations. If you make a payment toward your fee and later raise funds, you may request reimbursement from Buds to Blossoms for the portion of your fee that is covered by the funds you raised.

If you raise enough funds to cover your full participation fee, the remaining funds may be applied to your airfare in one of the following ways:
  1. You may pay Buds to Blossoms the portion of your airfare not covered by the funds you raised. Buds to Blossoms will then buy your plane ticket using the combination of the funds you raised and your payment.
  2. You may buy your plane ticket, provide a receipt for your airfare to Buds to Blossoms, and request reimbursement for the portion of your airfare you raised.

If you raise enough funds to cover your full participation fee and airfare, the remaining funds may be applied to your lodging, background check, travel insurance and visa expenses in the same ways described above for airfares. Receipts must be provided to Buds to Blossoms for each of the above expenses you want reimbursed.

Fundraising Webpage

You should request a fundraising webpage from Buds to Blossoms before you start fundraising. Your fundraising webpage enables people to donate conveniently using a credit/debit card on a secure website. Funds raised through your fundraising webpage are automatically deposited into Buds to Blossoms' bank account and credited toward your costs to participate in the volunteer program, up to the total of your participation fee, airfare, lodging, background check, travel insurance and visa expenses.

When someone makes a donation, their name will appear in the list of supporters on your fundraising page (unless they request anonymity), and the amount you've raised will be updated at the top of the page. Your page will also be updated to reflect cash, check and money order donations that are deposited in Buds to Blossoms' account at Bank of America. You can visit your fundraising webpage anytime to check your progress toward your goal and see the names of donors you should thank.

Fundraising webpages provided by popular services like GoFundMe, FirstGiving and Crowdrise typically charge a relatively high percentage of each donation, typically 6% to 10%, as a payment processing fee that's subtracted from the amount you receive. On the other hand, Buds to Blossoms' fundraising webpages have one of the lowest payment processing fees out there, at just 2.3%. That means more of your supporters' contributions will go toward covering your costs to join the volunteer program if you use the webpage we provide.

Info Center

Buds to Blossoms will also provide you with an info center webpage where you can change the fundraising goal and the text displayed on your fundraising webpage, see the balance due toward your participation fee after all donations are taken into account, and check off items on a list of tasks you need to complete to prepare for the volunteer program. Visit your info center regularly to make sure you complete items on your to-do list by their due dates.

Fraud Prevention

A donation made on your fundraising webpage may be cancelled by our payment processor Stripe.com or a bank/credit card company if the transaction is flagged as potentially fraudulent. Your fundraising page and info center's display of the amount you've raised should therefore be considered an estimate, rather than a final statement of your account. When it seems you've met your fundraising goal, ask Buds to Blossoms staff for confirmation that all donations have cleared.

Stripe.com Service Fee

Stripe.com acts as the credit/debit card processing service for donations made on your fundraising webpage and takes 2.3% of the amount donated, plus $0.30 per donation, as a service fee. The credit you receive toward your participation fee, lodging and airfare from donations made through your fundraising page is reduced by the amount of this service fee. This service fee is taken into account when the amount raised is calculated and displayed on your fundraising page.

When someone donates on your webpage, they're informed about the service fee and given the option to pay it so you receive the full amount they intend to contribute to your fundraiser.

Tax Deductions

Buds to Blossoms is a USA-based 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit organization. For citizens of the USA, donations are tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by USA law. Donations to Buds to Blossoms are not tax deductible for citizens of countries other than the USA.

Donations made on this website and cash, check and money order donations deposited into Buds to Blossoms' account at Bank of America can be used by citizens of the USA to claim tax deductions. Cash, checks and money orders deposited into your personal bank account and donations made to you on other websites are not tax-deductible donations.

Donation Receipts

When Buds to Blossoms receives a donation through your fundraising webpage, the donor is immediately emailed an official receipt that can be used in the USA for purposes of claiming a tax deduction. When Buds to Blossoms receives a cash, check or money order donation for your fundraiser from a donor in the USA, they are sent a receipt near the end of the calendar year. You or your donors can also request that receipts be mailed or emailed to them anytime by contacting us.

Use the Pledge Tracker not only to keep track of who's promised to support you but also to keep a record of donations you receive that were not made on your fundraising webpage. When one of your supporters requests a receipt, state this in the "Notes" column of the Pledge Tracker. Then scan or photograph the completed Pledge Tracker, and email the scan or photo to us so we have the information needed to send receipts to your supporters who requested them. It's particularly important that you do this when you receive cash donations or checks and money orders that don't display your donors' names and mailing addresses.

Buds to Blossoms will not provide receipts for donations that are not deposited into its account at Bank of America or made on this website.