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Lemonade for Livy is an initiative that raises epilepsy awareness and funding for research. All proceeds are donated to the Epilepsy Foundation and awarded to grant recipients who are working to better understand the disorder. The event occurs yearly over the course of the fourth weekend in July. It is an effort that brings people from around the world together to give hope to those with epilepsy and their families that new treatments will be discovered.
This year, we are partnering closely with the Epilepsy Foundation so we can reach more families and make a bigger impact. If we work as one and if we speak with a collective voice, we can make significant progress toward finding the answers that will ultimately lead to a cure.
10-year-old Olivia Scheinman (Livy) is the inspiration and symbol behind the Lemonade for Livy movement. What started as one neighborhood lemonade stand to raise money in honor of Livy is expanding into a global campaign. It continues to grow because of Livy's twin sister Hailey and the special bond the girls share, a mother's love and a father's promise made long ago. Click here to read A Father's Promise.
Since birth, Livy has been plagued by the damaging effects of epilepsy. We have watched her slowly slip away from us for months on end because we lost control of her seizures. She has endured multiple major brain surgeries but the seizures persist. We will no longer sit idly by and watch epilepsy steal the precious time we have with her.
65 million people across the globe have epilepsy. At this moment, parents are at hospitals in neonatal units watching their newborns have seizures. SUDEP (Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy) has claimed another life. A single mother is struggling to find a way to get to work because epilepsy has taken her ability to drive. A father is standing at the bedside of his 10 year old daughter praying to God to stop the uncontrolled convulsions. There are millions of stories just like these in every corner of the globe.
In 2014, individuals, families and businesses from across the United States made Lemonade for Livy a reality. We came together in a unified effort to raise funding for epilepsy research. Click here to see what we were able to accomplish and the project we helped fund. In 2015, our goal is to help the Epilepsy Foundation award multiple grants. Please join us in and the millions of families who no longer accept losing another moment to epilepsy. We want to bring the WORLD together to make a stand against epilepsy!
Guidelines to make your event successful (graphics downloads are available in the "Hold your stand" section):
Pick a date
Lemonade stands will be popping up across the country and around the world during the fourth weekend of July, but you can pick any day that works best for you! Some things to consider:
- Pick a date that gives you enough time to get the word out about it
- Pick a weekend date when people will be around
- Set a rain date
Pick a location
Pick a location: Location is everything! Make sure you are in a high traffic area, but remember you may need to get permission to set up your stand if it’s a public place.
- A busy neighborhood
- At a local park
- At a sporting event
- At a fair or parade
- In the town center
- At a train station
- At your local pool
- At a yard sale
- At a church/temple event
- At a playground
- At your birthday party
- At a school event
- In an office building
Set up your fundraising webpage
Collecting online donations makes it easier for people to donate to you if they can’t make it. Register your page at crowdrise.com/lemonadeforlivy.
- Pick a fundraising goal
- Add a personal message
- Add a photo/video
Get the word out
Leading up to your lemonade stand, let people know about it so they can be sure to stop by. Be sure to include your fundraising link on everything! If people can’t come, they still might want to donate, always give them an option to do so.
- Hang flyers around the area you are having your stand
- Post on your social media; Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and your blog
- Send letters to everyone you know
- Ask your family and friends to help you spread the word
Letter Writing/Emailing: We find that the most successful fundraisers are those who approach their friends and family for support. Your group of supporters will want to help you because this cause matters to you. Give people near and far a chance to support your lemonade stand, send them a letter letting them know what you are doing and why!
- Use the contact list of supporters you developed and add more to it. Don’t say “no” for anyone by assuming that they can’t or won’t support. Send them the letter or email and let them decide. Do not hesitate to include casual acquaintances, as they will understand that you are seeking donations for a worthy cause.
- Make the “Ask”. Include a call to action. Don’t just tell them what you are doing, ask for their help. Include your personal fundraising goal in the text, and suggest giving levels. Do not diminish your request by being apologetic or by saying something similar to “I hope you can donate something”.
- Make it personal. If mailing, hand address the outside envelope and hand sign each letter. For emails, don’t send a mass email with everyone’s address showing. It may take more time, but sending individual emails will make potential donors feel special. Write a short personal note to those you don’t see regularly, i.e., “Mary, I hope this finds you doing well!”
- Put your HEART into it. Let them know why you’re fundraising. This cause is important to you ¬ share why. Don’t include too many facts and figures; instead include your personal story of why you have taken on this task. Someone will donate to you because they know you, and want to support your efforts.
- Make it easy to donate. Include a link to your personal fundraising page and encourage online donations. If mailing, include a return envelope for them to send their donation to you. Label the envelopes with your address. It’s also nice to include a stamp on the return envelope. If they will be attending an event, instruct them to bring a check payable to Epilepsy Foundation: Lemonade.
- Set a deadline. People are always motivated by deadlines. We recommend that you set a deadline earlier than the event date. This way you can assess your fundraising and revise your plan if needed before the actual deadline.
- Send a reminder. Keep a list of those who send in donations. Send a reminder to those who have not yet donated. Include fundraising updates in your reminder. Let them know that fundraising is going well, but you still have a bit farther to go. Sometimes, reminder letters are more successful than original letters for bringing in the money.
- Send a “thank you” card. “Thanks” is a powerful word. It is nice to receive a note acknowledging the importance of a donation, no matter the amount. Staying in communication develops a rapport that will have many added benefits, from closer bonds of friendship to continued support for future efforts.
Know the facts: Using facts about epilepsy not only is a great call to action but also spreads awareness about the need for funds.
- 65 MILLION: Number of people around the world who have epilepsy.
- OVER 2 MILLION: Number of people in the United States who have epilepsy.
- 1 IN 26 people in the United States will develop epilepsy at some point in their lifetime.
- BETWEEN 4 AND 10 OUT OF 1,000: Number of people on earth who live with active seizures at any one time.
- 150,000: Number of new cases of epilepsy in the United States each year
- ONE-THIRD: Number of people with epilepsy who live with uncontrollable seizures because no available treatment works for them.
- 6 OUT OF 10: Number of people with epilepsy where the cause is unknown.
Develop a budget: You goal is to keep your fundraiser expenses low and your fundraising revenue high.
- Work with your contacts, your community and your vendors to get as many goods and services donated as possible.
- The Epilepsy Foundation can provide you with a letter affirming that your event will benefit the Foundation.
- Ideally your expenses should not exceed 20% of your gross projected revenue.
- Please note: Neither The Epilepsy Foundation nor Livy's Hope will not pay for nor reimburse you for expenses associated with your event.
Buy your materials
Time to gather the things you will need for your stand!
- Lemonade mix, or lemons if you are going to do it from scratch!
- Containers to hold your lemonade
- A cooler to keep it all cold
- Extra ice
- Cash box and change
- Donation box
- Umbrella for shade
- Lemonade for Livy Posters (downloads available in the "Hold your stand section")
- Pamphlets on the Epilepsy Foundation
- Extra treats to sell! Baked goods, ice pops, fruit, etc…
Hold your event
It's the big day! Don't forget all of your stand supplies, change, information about epilepsy and any extras you want to sell. Make sure to have fun and interact with your customers. Be sure to tell them why you are holding your event. When making your stand, please incorporate a Lemonade for Livy poster from the links below. You can also download and print the thank you cards to hand out during your event.
Post lemonade stand
CONGRATULATIONS! Your event is over and all of your hard work has paid off with a successful event, by raising both awareness and funds for the Epilepsy Foundation.
Submit Donation: Submit your donations to your fundraising page or the general donation page on CrowdRise (crowdrise.com/lemonadeforlivy) or mail to the Epilepsy Foundation office within 14 days of your event. Make check payable to Epilepsy Foundation: Lemonade. EF will submit acknowledgement letters to your donors. These acknowledgement letters will serve as their tax receipts.
Mail donations to:
8301 Professional Place East, Suite 200
Landover, MD 20785-2353
Send Thank You’s: Send letters to participants, vendors, volunteers and of course your donors. “Thanks” is a powerful word. It is nice to receive a note acknowledging the importance of a donation, no matter the amount. Staying in communication develops a rapport that will have many added benefits, from closer bonds of friendship to continued support for future efforts.
Post Your Results: Share on your social media the successes of the event, announce your total, post photos with #lemonadeforlivy and add your fundraising link for anyone who forgot to donate.
The images below are from Lemonade for Livy 2014.