Professional athletes and sports teams are promising sources for charitable donations. Athletes are generally seen as role models, so many donate to charitable causes and sponsor charities. Many foundations also benefit from the publicity that goes along with having a famous face or team representing your cause. When seeking donations from professional sports teams and athletes, know whom you need to speak to and what kind of donation you want, whether it's tickets, merchandise or money.
Establish what organization you would like to contact and what kind of donation you want. For instance, if you are holding a community auction, ask for sports tickets for which attendees can bid. Sports teams may be more likely to donate merchandise, such as jerseys or tickets, than money.
Obtain relevant contact details for the media department, or the community or public relations officer, for the team or athlete from whom you are seeking donations.
Visit your local high school or college and inquire if any former athletes have gone professional. Ask the coaches or sport’s administrators for information that could lead you to an athlete who is likely to feel favorable toward a local cause.
Organize a charity banquet or fundraiser and auction the donated items. If the team has donated money, invite a representative to present a check. An appearance by a professional athlete is good publicity for your charity and for the athlete.
Be creative with how you plan to use donated items and whom to contact. Athletes have busy schedules, but they will make time for good causes.
Patricia K. Maggio is a freelance writer originally from Chicago, Ill. She has been living, studying or working in Europe since 2007, when she graduated with a B.A. in English from DePaul University. Most recently, her screenwriting work has appeared on BBC America and STYLE Network.