Hydrocephalus Walk Tip of the Month

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Letter writing campaigns for Walk Family Teams!

by Randi Corey, Hydrocephalus Association Director of Special Events

Family Teams currently comprise the majority of the Hydrocephalus Association (HA) Walks. A ‘Family Team’, is usually a team with a direct connection to hydrocephalus and HA’s mission which is to eliminate the challenges of hydrocephalus. The team forms around a family member with hydrocephalus, a mother, father, son, daughter, aunt, uncle, or grandparent. Family Teams vary in size, ranging from one walker to as many as one thousand.
A letter writing campaign is very easy to implement and serves a dual purpose – asking for donations and providing public education about hydrocephalus, its challenges and its effect on the entire family. Experience has shown that Family Teams that use a letter writing campaign to raise money for the HA Walk will raise three or four times as much as a family team that uses more traditional methods.

To implement a letter writing campaign, the family writes a letter detailing its own experience with hydrocephalus. Who was diagnosed, when were they diagnosed, how did it happen and how has hydrocephalus impacted the entire family? The letter tells the family’s personal story of living with hydrocephalus and its challenges. The letter also asks the reader to donate to support the family’s participation in an HA Walk. The letter is sent to everyone the family knows, either through the United States Postal Service or by e-mail.

In addition to asking for a contribution to HA, the letter is also educating people about hydrocephalus. Everyone in the hydrocephalus community knows that one of the difficulties facing HA in raising money for its new multi-year, multi-million dollar research initiative is the general lack of knowledge about hydrocephalus. Most people have never heard of hydrocephalus, don’t understand how serious it can be and they have little or no idea of the issues associated with it. They don’t understand that a shunt is not a cure! However, by the time the reader has finished reading a Family Team letter they will know what hydrocephalus is and will have a better idea of its challenges.

If you would like to try a letter writing campaign for an upcoming HA Walk, the Hydrocephalus Association can provide you with a Family Teams Kit which will provide step-by-step instructions and a sample letter to get you up and running.

Just call us at 888-598-3789 and we’ll be happy to send it to you.

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