• Cody Voellinger

We exceeded our fundraising goal @ Night Out!!!

At our April 4th weekly meeting, Derek and I broke the news to our team that we just got our 501(c)(3)! Now we had a choice to make - plan our launch party before school is out or wait until Fall?

On April 5th we met Angelica to secure a venue, and the next week asked Redwood City legend & auctioneer Frank Bizzarro to help us. He checked his calendar and explained “Most clients plan their events 6 months in advance, we have 6 weeks… but I like your energy, so let’s do it.”

Our team had never organized a fundraiser or thrown a party of this magnitude, so we set an aspirational goal of raising $50k at Night Out with Community Best on May 30th.

We had no idea how much had to happen in those 60 days...

  • Collecting almost 100 auction items, with participation from schools like Roosevelt, Kennedy and Henry Ford!

  • Ensuring a great turn-out of techies, parents and Redwood City-zens

  • Email campaigning > 150 Redwood City tech companies

  • > 25 meetings with > 15 local tech companies

  • Bled (well, donated blood) to secure a partnership

  • Recruited Mayor Bain as an Advisor

  • Along the way we also sponsored 3 schools at STEAM Fest, hand-delivered 32 pizzas and 1,000 donut holes for Teacher Appreciation week, and handed out four $1k checks to RCSD schools to help fund STEAM Labs

Until 5:30pm on May 30th, we remained anxious about whether our efforts would pay off. Our anxiety melted as a line formed at the check-in table, people showed up! Then stayed all night and had a great time!

As the night wore on, more goals were met:

Bring an amazing group of people together for a good cause - ✓

Raise awareness about Redwood City schools - ✓

Raise $$$ for Redwood City schools - ✓

Rally the tech community - ✓✓✓ We had representation from > 30 different tech companies including: Box, Google, Apple, Facebook, AirBnB, Salesforce, GoFundMe, Skydio, Course Hero, IMVU, KiwiCo, Epic!, Wealthfront, and more!

“Night Out was epic! We saw a whole new set of faces that came out to support the schools and brought renewed energy and enthusiasm with them. This sort of community support can make a difference in thousands of kid’s lives.” - Dennis McBride, RCSD President

Here is what you have all been waiting for...

While this # could still go up (reminder to apply for your company’s matching program, or go ahead and get your week long Safari for two!), we are THRILLED to announce that we raised > $60,000!!!

We are excited to get this money to the schools. All of the money raised from silent auction items donated by the school PTAs will go directly back to those PTAs. We will continue distributing $1k checks to help fund STEAM Labs at Redwood City schools. Over the Summer we are building a Funding Advisory Committee to continue researching how the money can make the biggest impact for the kids.

Ultimately, this wouldn’t have been possible without a team that was prepared to move mountains AND an amazing group of supporters- you all, our Community. And now that we have seen how much support there is to be channeled, our goals and initiatives have grown, so must our team :-)

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