TIP: $0 + God = Mission Experience
HOLA to ALL current and past and future Honduras missionaries!
Our mission teams are gearing up for the next addition in the Honduras God story and we are asking you to once again join us. As many of you know, our Honduras budget is based on prayer - every year we ask God what He wants us to spend on ministry areas and then we just add the "set costs" of getting the missionaries there (close to $1,000 per missionary) . This year our total budget is $118,850 with $48,600 for prayer-based ministry expenses. At the current date, May 5, 2005, we are still about $21,500 short of our budget goal. Here is where you can help:
1) Wear your Honduras t-shirt every Sunday during the month of May to help raise awareness within our church.
2) Pray for God to rain down on us with the financial help that only He can provide.
3) Ask friends/family/co-workers etc. - whoever you feel led to - to support our mission trip
We have seen God work miracles with our budget before and we are BELIEVING ON HIM for the money again. Now a true short story: On May 17, 2003 we were in a similar position. We were $7,300 short of our goal. People started to ask: What is our back up plan? We had no back-up plan - only THE plan of prayer. So we put out the message to pray and we waited. During the very week that followed God showed His mighty power. One check was for $2,000 from someone who didn't even go to our church. Two more checks came in from church members - one was for $2,000 and the other for $3,300. It took God only 3 checks to make up our shortage! God could have used 100 people to make up that shortage but we know that God wanted to build our faith and trust and remind us of the Holy Trinity.
Let's all join together as one and ask in agreement that His will be done and that the Holy Spirit moves mightily again on our trip.
THANK YOU LORD FOR WHAT YOU HAVE DONE AND WHAT YOU WILL DO!
How much money do I need to raise to go on a mission trip?
Each missionary is responsible for raising and/or contributing a portion of the total mission budget. For 2007 a 10-day trip costs $1,350.
How will the money I raise be spent?
The money raised will go towards the total budget for the mission trip. The budget includes costs for each missionary’s airline tickets, ground transportation, food, lodging, insurance, a 1-day excursion, miscellaneous overhead costs and ministry expenses. The amount you are asked to raise will cover the approximate expenses for your stay in Honduras plus $120 toward ministry expenses. For 2007 the budget includes approximately $67,000 for construction, medicine, clothes, food, multi-media, bibles and children’s ministry supplies.
What happens to the money I raise and/or contribute if for some reason I do not go?
If a missionary cancels for any reason, the donations that they raised/contributed will first be used to cover any expenses incurred on behalf of the missionary. Any remaining funds will be used to cover the mission budget and/or to assist another missionary.
How should I raise the funds needed?
All missionaries are encouraged to raise the needed funds through a combination of letter-writing and personal earnings. Letters should not be sent to Damascus Road members/attendees. Damascus Road members and attendees have a chance to contribute through their regular offerings (part of the operating budget goes towards the Honduras Mission) and special church wide fundraising requests organized by the Mission Board. Damascus Road stipends may be available through the church wide fundraising and will be issued according to need, as funds are available.
If you are a NxtGen teenager AND a regular attendee or member of Damascus Road, we will try to assist you in meeting your goal via the 3-Way Student Plan.
Anybody who is in a position to raise additional funds beyond their goal is encouraged to do so.
What is the 3-Way Plan?
What is a "Damascus Road Stipend" and how are they applied?
- Write letters to friends and family who do not attend DRCC to raise 33% of your total goal for a 10-day trip. Figure on an average donation of $20 per letter. To raise $450, you should plan to send at least 23 letters. A sample letter is available to get you started. We recommend that you use this letter.
- Earn 33% of your total goal through a student job or some type of service such as cleaning, raking leaves, baby-sitting, etc.
- Assist in mission’s promotions at church. In the past, funds contributed by the members and attendees of DRCC have provided the means for a stipend of 33% for a 10-day stay for eligible students. All stipends are subject to availability based on funds raised and applied on an as needed basis.
Damascus Road members are invited in a large church-wide fundraiser to contribute to the mission. The funds they contribute are disbursed/allocated by the Honduras Board as follows:
- NxtGen teenagers who are members or regular attendees of DRCC may receive a stipend as needed, but not to exceed 33% of a 10-day goal.
- As funds are available, collegiate missionaries may receive a stipend not to exceed 33% of a 10-day goal.
- Any remaining funds from the church fundraiser may be used for a stipend for Construction/Adult missionaries, not to exceed 33% of a 10-day goal. Available funds may also be used for ministry expenses.
How do I know how much money I have raised?
Each missionary will be collecting and then turning in donations raised. This should assist the missionary in timely thank-you notes as well as tracking fund-raising goals. Each missionary will be responsible for keeping track of their own donors AND turning in the checks to the mission accountant - Kathy Cuttitta through her in-box at the church office or through clearly marked envelopes turned in through Sunday offering collections. Any funds that come in through church offerings or direct mail will be communicated to the missionary on a timely basis.
What happens to the money if I go over goal in my fund raising?
The Honduras Board has developed a mission budget that approximates the expected cost for this mission trip. Unless designated for a specific purpose by a donor, all monies raised above a missionary’s goal of $1,350 will be applied to the mission budget. A missionary may request that any overage raised be applied toward another missionary’s goal. During the fundraising for past trips, it's been a real blessing for both missionaries when someone with more resources helps someone that has fewer resources reach their goal.
How do I make sure my donors receive a tax-deductible receipt for their donation?
Donations are tax deductible as long as the donor’s check is made payable to Damascus Road Community Church or DRCC. Monies that can in any way be tied to the "personal account" of an individual are not tax deductible.
Be sure that a correct address is submitted with each donation. We recommend you use the form provided with the sample fundraising letter. Be sure to add your name and address to the bottom of the letter as the donations will be mailed to you.
What should I do if somebody makes a check payable to me personally?
All checks should be made payable to DRCC. In the event somebody makes a check personally payable to you and wants a tax receipt, you should sign the check and below your signature write: “please make payable to DRCC.” If at all possible, ask them to make out a new check payable to DRCC and return the personal check.
It is important to understand and communicate to your donors that funds are not being raised for “you” or “your account.” They are being raised for the DRCC Mission Fund and once raised are the property of DRCC for mission use only. If a donor ever makes a restriction for a missionary "account," it ceases to be tax deductible and may not be run through the church mission fund.
While it is legal to track charitable donations raised by a "missionary fund raiser," it is not legal to track tax deductible donations by "missionary account." This is why the form at the bottom of the fund raising letter states "I was invited to support Mission Honduras by:_______________.”
What if a donor wants to contribute to a specific aspect of a mission trip?
Donors may contribute to a specific aspect of a mission trip, but we prefer that donations be made towards meeting the overall Honduras Mission budget. If they make a specification for Bibles, medical supplies, clothing, or children’s ministry supplies, or construction materials, etc, we will use their donation for the area specified.
What if somebody places a donation in the church offering plate?
For most efficient tracking, mission funds should be turned in at the church office to Kathy Cuttitta’s inbox, after the missionary has noted their donor information. Donations may also be placed in the church offering plate during Sunday services.
If you know that somebody gave you a donation via the church offering plate and you did not receive credit for raising the funds, you need to notify to have the donation traced and confirmed.
What happens if I fail to reach a goal by a deadline?
Missionaries are responsible for reaching financial deadlines promptly as it may affect the mission leader’s ability to purchase airline tickets, etc. Any missionary who is short on funds may arrange to have a friend or relative front money to meet a deadline. Fronted money can be reimbursed once sufficient funds have been raised. Fronted money must be identified when submitted.
If a missionary is short of their goal at a deadline and fronted funds are not available, they may need to wait for a future trip.
Am I required to send "Thank you" notes to my donors?
Missionaries who fail to recognize the sacrifice made by their donors undermine the blessing entitled to the donor and jeopardize the integrity of the mission. It is common courtesy that donors should receive a personal thank you in a timely fashion. Missionaries who fail to follow through with timely thanks may not be permitted to participate in future Damascus Road mission trips.