Debbie Kay

A Team Fundraising Page Benefiting Pencils of Promise
  • Team goal:
  • $70,538
  • Raised so far:
  • $70,713
  • Team Ranking:
  • 1 of 9
  • Fundraisers:
  • 0
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The First Campaign

In Oct 2015, I gave myself 12 months to raise US$25,000 and build one school.  But I did it in 46 days with 80 donors of brilliant, generous, close friends and a surprising large number of strangers donating large amounts,  and a large proportion of my network untapped and a lot of committed donations that have yet to be donated.  So I committed to raising another US$50,000.

The Christmas Campaign #givewhatforxmas

Over Christmas, I ran a #giveWHATforXmas campaign where I have 6 kids willing to give up their Christmas presents so that a less fortunate child can go to school.  Check out the music videos that we made that went on our mobile app  Each videos reiceived more than 1,000 views in a few days and have spurred lots of spontaneous donations on Facebook! Including a mention by the SIngapore Kindness Movement! 

Christmas App


Check out our micro-site on Adsy for the backstory 


Adsy Microsite


Over New Years / Window's Matching 

This is where I learnt the real secret of fundraising. Right when you least expect it, when everyone is still warm and fuzzy from Christmas, we were told that Windows would match all donations $1 for $1 for 24 hours only on 31 December! Boy did that shake things up!

Thanks to my super-hero parents and their super generous friends, we managed to raise about $20,000 in one day! Then we heard that Windows would continue donation matching through 1 Jan 2016! 

By the end of that 48 hour period, we had raised  an unbelievable US$42K! in 48 hours!! Even after Windows stopped their matching (I got the last of their donation matching), we still had donations pouring in!

It was so special I even made a 2X Impact pop-site (ok don't be jealous Weebly) with real scroll animation! Check this out!   

The secret is to fundraising: No one says no when they think they're doubling their donation - but you have to keep it urgent. 24 hours only. Everyone loves a 2 for 1 deal!

So am at a total of $72,132 with only a little $1,378 left to go before I'm done fundraising for my THIRD SCHOOL!  

The most recent donation came from Robert Hyndes who recently stubled over my Hacking Paid Twitter Tools article on  Medium post - Thanks Robert! 

How will you spend your next $25?


Pencils of Promise Season of Promise

Like Adam Braun, Pencil of Promise’s founder, I strongly believe that every child deserves an education.  Building a school is something that I have always wanted to do, and it feels like the right time to do it.

A lack of quality education can lead to:

Health and Sanitation IssuesGender Inequality Lack of Qualified TeachersFamilial economic instability Infrastructure Challenges

Pencils of Promise

Pencils of Promise was set up by an ex-Bainee, Adam Braun, who built an extremely successful organisation which helps to build schools in four countries: Laos, Nicaragua, Ghana and Guatemela. In one of Bain’s alumni newsletters, they offered to send all alums a copy of Adam’s best-selling book: “The Promise of a Pencil”. I remember exactly which day it was because I tweeted about it !

Got my @PencilsOfPromis book by @AdamBraun thanks to @Onebain! Once a Bainee Always a Bainee!

— Deborah Kay (@debbiediscovers) June 13, 2015



Why Pencils of Promise


Every dollar donated online goes directly to our programs to educate more children.


All of our Country Directors are from the country they lead.


Every school we’ve opened to date is fully operational and educating students daily. To date, 313 schools have been built with over 33,000 students educated.

How you can help: 

$25 will fund a child's education for a year

$100 will sponsor a water and health programme.  This includes building bathrooms and sanitary stations and educating children about proper hygiene.

$250 will sponsor a secondary school scholarship. Using historical data, high risks schools where students are most likely to drop out arae identified. Pencils of Promise offers scholarships which cover tuition, books, lodging and transportation. Students’ performance is also tracked, and a 75% attendence record must be maintained in order to continue receiving the scholarship. 

$250 will sponsor a mobile learning kit contains books, phonic games and creative educational tools for teachers or one e-reader provides a student with 100 books in both English and the local language.

$500 will provide teaching support. PoP teachers  that creates the educational materials required, identify and train the teachers, and track the educational progress of the student to evaluate the effectiveness of the programme.

$25,000 will build an entire school. One thing I love about Pencils of Promise is that they are results driven. And not just short-term results, but achieving sustainable change is very important.  As a result, PoP chooses identifies communities that are deeply invested in their children’s education. 20% of all costs come from the community themselves in terms of labour and materials.

Self Learning Environments SOLE: Pencils of Promise are also partnering with TED prize winner Sugata Mitra to bring his Hole in the Wall technology into PoP Schools - this is an extremely exciting initiative (visit my webpage to learn more).

What I will be doing to raise the money

  • The easy part: Ask my family and friends to make a donation - I know you're all very generous people (and it's my birthday on 14th October...hint hint....) 
  • The hard part: Get strangers to donate to my campaign
  • Research and incorporate best practices in peer-to-peer crowdfunding
  • Research and incorporate best practices in social media marketing 
  • Use my inbound marketing tactics to drive traffic to the website and donations
  • Data! Track my campaign performance and results in interesting and interactive ways (DONE!
  • Design! Design a campagin logo (DONE!)! Create lots of shareable content (pictures, quotes, videos, articles, e-books, blog posts)
  • Digital! Build a dedicated website (DONE! Set up an automated email marketing campaign (DONE! Subscribe at Create a dedicated Facebook Page. Create a campaign hashtag for Twitter and Instagram (DONE! #debbiediscoversPoP) 

How You can Help 


Join me as a team member! 

  • Become a team member! Join my campaign and get your friends to donate too! 
  • Commit to any amount $100, $1,000, $5,000 and ask your kids, your family, your colleagues, your friends to pitch in!

Your support would mean a lot to me. 





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