Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Enter FitLanthropy!

The past few years I have partnered with a variety of non-profits in launching half marathon training/fundraising programs. I have tried a variety of different approaches and am excited to enter 2010 with a new approach and a new brand for these programs. Enter FitLanthropy!

So, what's the lowdown with FitLanthropy? Read on....

Where fitness and philanthropy meet.

We make it easy for you to make a difference

Whether you work to find a cure for disease, feed the hungry, educate children, help others find employment, or offer senior and social services – it’s clear that need throughout the community has never been greater. FitLanthropy provides Bay Area non-profit organizations an avenue to effortlessly expand the reach of their annual campaign through half-marathon fundraising and training programs.

FitLanthropy sets the course for a winning campaign for both the giver and the receiver. It starts with a gift to yourself in the form of fitness and by accomplishing the ultimate physical and mental challenge of conquering a half marathon, and ends by strengthening your organizations ability to help those that you support.

We focus on the half-marathon as 13.1 miles is an accessible goal for all runners – beginners to veterans. By providing the right training, incentive and commitment, runners training with FitLanthropy programs have the opportunity to participate in a winning group activity that will take their fitness to a new level. The finish line signifies a true organizational – and personal – milestone.

Owned by Mathew Forsman, an event management executive, a USATF/RRCA certified professional running coach and certified ‘fitlanthropist’, FitLanthropy has helped generate nearly $400,000 in fundraising dollars for several Bay Area non-profit organizations in the last three years. Working on a contingency basis with no up-front financial commitment, FitLanthropy is a cost-effective way to align your philanthropic goals and greatly expand your visibility and marketing efforts, while participating in a fun group fitness event.

We establish healthy habits in both fitness and giving.

We Provide the Whole Package

A FitLanthropy produced 10-12 week half marathon fundraising and training program includes event management and administration, professional coaching services, and fundraising support.

Event Management

A large portion of the work is completed by FitLanthropy in order to minimize the resources required from the partnering organization. We enable online registration and provide website content, web design support, all relevant forms and waivers, newsletters and collateral materials. Team FitLanthropy also supports recruiting information sessions and customer support.

Those who support your cause join one of Matt’s established group training programs, which draw 150-200 people from throughout the Bay Area. Each program is focused on a specific local race, which facilitates team cohesion and community from the first meeting to the finish line; the group dynamic is extremely successful in motivating participants and makes training for a half-marathon fun, social and supportive. The large number of participants ensures that every level of fitness and ability are represented – from the beginner looking to tackle that first half-marathon experience to the seasoned runner going for their personal best time. Financially and personally, we will help you accomplish far more than you ever thought possible. The group atmosphere also provides an accessible platform to expand the organization’s marketing and visibility efforts.

Participants commit to raising a minimum of $1300 from friends, family members, and colleagues. FitLanthropy provides fundraising strategies, opportunities, and support for all program participants during the course of the program. We also set up an online fundraising website for the partnering organization that enables participants to create personal fundraising webpage’s. You receive checks every two weeks during the course of the program from Active Giving for posted donations.

Business Week reported that in 2005 marathon training programs
raised $656 million for charitable causes.

About Team FitLanthropy
Led by Matt Forsman, an event management executive, former IT professional, passionate runner, and professional running coach, Team FitLanthropy is committed to providing a world class experience for program participants while creating community, driving fundraising dollars and having fun every mile of the way!

Matt and his team have the coaching certification (USTAF/RRCA) and running experience to support anyone who chooses to join the program. From training principles to nutrition and injury prevention strategies, Team FitLanthropy is passionately committed to helping program participants meet and exceed their running goals.

This commitment to fitness, Fitlanthropy, and fun has enabled Team FitLanthropy to grow program participation from 30 in 2005 to in excess of 200 in 2009 and generate over $400,000 in fundraising dollars for various Bay Area non-profits, including Larkin Street Youth Services, Hands on Bay Area, Girls on the Run, YMCA of San Francisco and many others..


FitLanthropy works on a contingency basis with no up-front costs. Compensation is 30% of gross fundraising dollars raised during the lifecycle of the program.

• Total time offered for Event Management: 90-100 hours
• Total time offered for Professional Coaching: 95-100 hours
• Total time offered for Fundraising Support: 50 hours

*All hours are approximate.

Event Management and Administration

A large portion of the work is completed by FitLanthropy in order to minimize the resources required from the partnering organization.


We help the participating organization maximize the opportunity for marketing, advertising and community building. With a typical training group consisting of 100-200 runners, organizations are in an excellent position to foster new relationships and develop new donors, supporters, and volunteers.

Program Website Support

FitLanthropy works with your established web team and will provide guidance regarding design and layout for the programs online presence, insuring all components are clearly explained for prospective participants.

Website Content
FitLanthropy will provide website content that outlines and explains all relevant program details, including training, fundraising, program overview and frequently asked questions.

Online Event Registration

Fitlanthropy creates and enables clear, easy online program registration via Active.com, a high-visibility website (21 million registered users) for runners and tri-athletes. FitLanthropy also provides online liability waivers, fundraising commitment forms and clear direction to program participants regarding next steps once they’ve joined.

Email Newsletters
FitLanthropy designs and creates professional email newsletters for the partnering organization to utilize as a marketing tool in getting the word out to constituents and/or prospective runners. We also leverage our internal email newsletter distribution (1,200+) and San Francisco’s Fleet Feet Sports email list (5,000+) for organization and program visibility, marketing, advertising and recruiting efforts.

Flyers and Collateral Pieces

FitLanthropy creates program flyer templates and collateral pieces, with a consistent design and message, to support marketing, advertising and recruiting efforts.

Program Recruiting Events and Information Sessions

Fitlanthropy works with the partnering organization to recognize and strategically leverage recruiting events and information sessions in order to connect with prospective runners and participants.

Customer Support
FitLanthropy provides prompt and professional response to prospective participants who have questions about the program, including program logistics, training specifics and fundraising concerns.

Professional Coaching Services

Participants supporting your organization join one of Matt Forsman’s established group training programs, which typical draw 150-200 people from throughout the Bay Area. Each program is focused on a specific race, which facilitates team cohesion and community from the first meeting to the finish line! Every level of fitness and ability are represented – from the beginner looking to tackle that first half-marathon experience to the seasoned runner going for their personal best time.

RRCA/USATF Certified Coaches
Our coaches provide an educated, positive, and supportive training environment for runners of all ability levels. USATF/RRCA certified running coaches lead every run workout and we stay actively engaged with all runners throughout the course of the program.

Comprehensive Training Schedule

With 10-12 weeks of proper training running 13.1 miles is an accessible goal for anyone to achieve. Through FitLanthropy’s comprehensive training program runners are able to optimize their effort while minimizing the chance of injuries. Our well-planned schedule and curriculum provides for a safe/effective training experience that is applicable to all levels of running experience.

• We instill a highly personable and active approach to coaching.
•All coaches are actively engaged in each run workout from start to finish and are focused on supporting all runners every step of the way.
• Our skilled coaches are well positioned to connect with each runner for every run.
• Participants are provided with a comprehensive training schedule for the duration of the program that explicitly outlines what participants should do every day of the week in order to optimize their training.
• The schedule typically includes 3 days of running, 2 days of cross-training and 2 days of rest. This approach optimizes the training experience while minimizing the chances of injuries and aggravations.
• We incorporate a very gradual, methodical increase of mileage over the course of 10-12 weeks. Most participants start the program with just a mile or two.
• The training schedule accommodates for a broad range of running experience and fitness levels.

Email Newsletter

Participants receive a twice-weekly email newsletter full of useful content relevant to completing a half marathon, including, nutrition, hydration, core strength and stability, injury prevention. The newsletters also provide details for the upcoming week’s training as well as information about special promotions, team events and discounts with FitLanthropy's business partners.

Professional Run Courses

All running courses are mapped, measured and marked for program participants.

Email/phone access to coaches throughout duration of program

Inevitably, questions and concerns come up during the course of the program. FitLanthropy provide prompt, professional and thoughtful responses to all issues that arise during the course of training.

Team Social events
For many program participants, the program becomes as much about meeting people and making friends as training and fundraising. While the program may be primarily about fitness and philanthropy, we make sure that fun is a big part of the equation as well!

Fundraising Support
FitLanthropy provides strategies, opportunities, and support to runners along their fundraising journey of raising their committed $1300.

Personal Fundraising Webpage

The program website greatly simplifies and personalizes fundraising efforts; through ActiveGiving.com (or a similar online fundraising tool), participants are able to create their own fundraising webpage, allowing easy marketing for participants and an easy and safe way for donors to give.

Fundraising Strategy Book

The fundraising strategy book provides 30+ fundraising strategies as well as a week-by-week game plan for meeting the minimum of $1300.

Ongoing Fundraising Support and Status Updates

Each week program participants are kept informed of important fundraising dates, provided new fundraising tips and top fundraisers are highlighted.

Participant Fundraising Questions and Concerns

Inevitably, some participants encounter fundraising challenges and FitLanthropy will provide prompt and professional assistance to any participant that is experiencing challenges or issues.

Fundraising Incentive Plan Creation

FitLanthropy actively partners with several local businesses such as PSOAS Massage & Bodywork, Fleet Feet Sports San Francisco, Teeny Cake, Kerri Kelly Yoga, among others. Many of these businesses contribute items to help encourage program participants to reach and exceed their fundraising minimum.

Fundraising strategies and the week-by-week fundraising game plan is reinforced each week along with additional fundraising strategies and tips.

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