Written by Sarah Kirkman, Edith Coughlin’s ‘Aunty Sais’
From August 2022 – March 2023, just by baking, I managed to raise $2,582 or £2053!
Can you believe it? I couldn’t!
My beautiful and incredible niece, Edith Coughlin, has BBSOAS. Her parents (Tim and Jennifer, my sister) do as much as they can to raise awareness of BBSOAS and the work of the NR2F1 Foundation. My brother-in-law (Edith’s Dad) last year ran a marathon in aid of the NR2F1 Foundation to raise funds for research, and it got me thinking that I really wanted to help. But let me tell you – I am not a marathon runner!
But what I am really good at, and what I enjoy doing, is baking. I would often bake and take something into work to share, and regularly friends would ask when I was next baking. So this gave me an idea – I set out with a goal of hosting a bake sale for my co-workers, and asking them to donate to the NR2F1 Foundation.
While I was worried about asking people to donate $1.50 / £1, no one else was. The first week was a big hit, and they asked me to do it again, and again, and again! It’s now become a weekly well-known bake sale! It’s an absolute hit, and I sell out every week! Not to mention that co-workers ask about the charity and it gives me a chance to tell them more, and brag about my amazing niece and how hard she works towards those inch stones.
So, while not everyone can run a marathon or a do a 32 mile bike ride, I bet there is something you can do. Every little bit helps, and I’ve proven that those $1.50 brownies can really mount up and have an impact.
My recommendations for having a successful bake sale to raise funds for the NR2F1 Foundation:
• Keep it simple – triple chocolate brownies sell out over all the fancy flavors
• Cover your baking costs, making it self-sustainable
• I often bake in advance and freeze them. Brownies freeze and defrost to sell perfectly
• Tell people in advance to bring Tupperware or have bags to take them away to families at home
• Use photos of your amazing children- they warm our hearts and make us spend more! Plus add the Foundation logo
• I have a laminated poster with photos of my niece, then I just write in erasable pen the flavors each week
• Be brave and have confidence in yourself. I would never have expected I could raise, and keep raising this much
• Because I do it so often I now have a charity collection tin, and have borrowed a friend’s card reader so even when people say they have no change, I say ‘no problem, just tap with your phone’!
An extra big thanks to ‘Auntie Sais’ from all of us in the BBSOAS community. These amounts make a really big difference to a small charity like ours.
Share you fundraising ideas with us, we’d love to hear!
Carlie is the President of the Board of Directors for the NR2F1 Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to those living with rare mutations on the Nr2f1 gene.
With a B.S. in Special Education and a M.S. in Counseling, Carlie has worked at EPU Children’s Center as a Resource Specialist serving parents of children living with disabilities and then directed a parent leadership group for disability advocacy through storytelling and public speaking.
Carlie lives with her husband Jeff and their two daughters, one of whom has the rare Nr2f1 gene mutation, in Royal Oak, Michigan. She wants all Nr2f1 families whose lives have changed dramatically to know they are not alone.