Saturday, August 2, 2014

Fundraising with the Indiana Pacers

      The Indiana Pacers began a fundraising opportunity where schools would sponsor a community night at a home Pacers game. The school received a portion of the revenue from the tickets sold by the school district. Beech Grove schools took advantage of this opportunity and INAPEF did a question-and-answer with Beech Grove Education Foundation Executive Director Melody Stevens to see how the fundraiser worked.

      Q.  What did the Pacers staff need from your foundation to get started on Beech Grove’s night at the Pacers?
      The only thing the Pacers needed from our Foundation was a signed agreement that we wanted to hold the fundraiser. I spoke with each building principal and treasurer to get his/her "buy-in" to conduct it in his/her school and handle the paperwork.

     Q. How did you promote the special Pacers game night to your students?
We put it on both the Foundation and District websites, had posters (provided by the Pacers) in each school, and through email announcements to our parents.

Q. How many tickets did the school district sell?

Q. What did your foundation staff or volunteers have to do to make this happen?
The most wonderful part of this fundraiser is that Foundation staff and volunteers had to do very little to make this happen. Treasurers in each of our buildings collected the money from students and gathered it together for Pacers personnel to pick up.

Q. How much money did the foundation make?
The Beech Grove Education Foundation made $9,700 from the fundraiser!

Q. Would you do it again?
Yes, we would do it again!  We are planning for another Pacers fundraiser this year and have already met with the Pacers marketing department to plan.

As a footnote, you can also arrange with the Pacers staff for students to sing the national anthem at the beginning of the game and some other opportunities that showcase students at the game. For more information about fundraising opportunities with the Indiana Pacers, contact Jason Cohen at or Sam Elmore at

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

A Night With the Harlem Wizards

The Noblesville Schools Education Foundation recently had their second fundraising event with the Harlem Wizards. INAPEF did a question-and-answer with NSEF President Nick Boland about the event: 

What made the Harlem Wizards game night appealing to the foundation?

It gave us an event that would be entertaining for people of all ages and from all our schools.

What did the Harlem Wizards provide you to market the game?

Posters, videos (web and CD), and tickets. On game day the players divided up and visited all of our schools during the lunch hour. This created a tremendous enthusiasm for everyone and boosted our ticket sales at the door.

What did you need volunteers to do to make the event happen?

The days before the game mostly involved ticket pre-sales and getting the word out (posters, student communication, media). We set up a table at appropriate events with posters, video, and pre-game ticket sales.

Our game used one or more persons from each school that students would know and be motivated to see play. This was often the principal and one or more well known teachers. We had other organizations or volunteers handling ticket sales at the gate, concessions, parking, hospitality room for volunteers, and Wizard item sales.

Approximately how many people came to the event?

Our student enrollment K-12 is approximately 10,000. Our total ticket sales for parents and students was approximately 2,500.

How did the students get excited about the event?

Everyone who saw the Wizard player during their visit to the school was extremely excited.

Who played/made up your staff team?

Principal and teachers made up our teams. The teachers also formed a cheerleading squad.

Will you continue to do a Harlem Wizards event?

Yes, without question.

For more information, you can contact Shelley Helton with the Harlem Wizards at 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

NAP Credit Introduction

NAP Credits: What Are They and Could You Benefit From Them?

At least one Indiana public education foundation has applied for and received NAP credits that can be used as an incentive for contributions from individuals and businesses. Here’s some basic information on NAP credits.

Neighborhood Assistance Program (NAP) tax credits are offered by the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHCDA). Up to $2.5 million in these credits is annually awarded to 501(c)(3) nonprofits for distribution. A nonprofit has to apply to the state and, if approved, is given a certain amount of money to offer as these tax credits.

How NAP Credits Work

Let’s say you (or your business) donate $1,000 to a nonprofit that has NAP credits and you ask the organization for NAP credit for your gift (usually you do have to ask since there's a limit to how much money the nonprofit can give away that year in NAP credits). The organization gives you a special form to sign and file with your state income taxes. That donation and form entitles you to a 50% tax credit (different than deduction) which means $500 of your $1,000 donation is added directly to your state tax refund (or deducted from what you owe, depending on your situation). So:
  $1,000  is your donation to XYZ Education Foundation (approved to offer NAP credits)
-  $500   is what you save on your Indiana tax return as a NAP credit
   $500   is the net cost to you for your $1,000 donation (not to mention the federal tax deduction)

How Does an Education Foundation Get to Offer NAP Credits

Well, there had to be a catch, right? Well, any nonprofit wanting to offer NAP credits must apply annually to the state (applications have usually been due around the end of March of each year, but 2014's info has yet to be posted). I’ve heard the application process isn’t a piece of cake, but you might be able to work on it so you’re ready to apply for next year. Your organization successfully completes the application and is approved to offer these credits. You are told how much you have to give out in these credits to donors and you are required to give out the fully amount you were allotted. 

As a first-time applicant, you must also attend an in-person or webinar training session (the webinars are on-demand and available 24/7) before you can apply. Nonprofits must be serving in an economically disadvantaged area of the state as defined in the application packet.

You can check out the 2013 packet at to see if it is something for your foundation to consider either in 2014 or 2015. 

As I mentioned, the application is an involved process, but what an incentive to be able to get some bigger gifts from some donors!