What a Hot Dog Fundraiser Taught Me About My Coworkers

Posted on in Blog, Oneupweb's Instagram

This blog was written by Freddy Hunt, Oneupweb’s director of SEO & Content Marketing. Connect with him on LinkedIn!

It’s not easy asking your coworkers to donate their hard-earned money. After all, they come into the office to make money, not to give it away.

I was recruited by my brother-in-law to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Man of the year campaign. Our team’s goal is a steep $100,000. I personally pledged to raise $5,000, which I knew was not going to be easy. You see, most of the team is based in Columbus, Ohio (my hometown). I live nearly 400 miles north in Traverse City, a solid seven-hour drive from the fundraising events happening in the heart of Ohio.

man in short sleeve t-shirt cooks hot dogs at a grill outside
Freddy grills some hot dogs outside the Oneupweb office.

LLS Fundraising Cookout

Early on, I knew I’d have to host a fundraising event on my own. I settled on a cookout benefit. My father-in-law gave me the idea after hosting a hugely successful pizza party to benefit an LLS campaign four years prior. But since I don’t have a giant wood-burning pizza oven in my backyard, I went with hot dogs. I love hot dogs. And as it turns out, so do my co-workers.

I quickly whipped up a flyer out of a cookout-themed template I found on Canva. I posted the flyer to Slack, making it very clear that donations are not required but greatly appreciated. There was a strong reaction – I think it may have been the mustard pun. 😉

slack message promoting hot dog fundraiser with graphic and text

My incredible wife helped round up all the ingredients for the cookout. The menu included all-beef Hebrew National hot dogs (my #1 favorite). We had fixings for Avocado Crunch Dogs (avocado + potato chips + Sriracha) and Jalapeno Popper Dogs (jalapenos + cream cheese + mustard). I also painstakingly provided ketchup, because I guess there are some people who like ketchup on their hot dogs?

I spent about $70 on all the food, napkins and plates. With about 40 employees working in the office, I figure maybe 20 people would be hungry for hot dogs. I was honestly expecting to break even, maybe collect $100 in donations.

two hot dogs on buns with chips and potato salad on paper plate
Two tasty looking hot dogs on crispy grilled buns! All for a good cause, too.

Boy was I surprised.

The first donation to hit my jar was a $50 bill. Next, I received an online donation for $100! The donations kept coming in all morning, during lunch and even after. At the end of the day, we raised nearly $400 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. While it may be a drop in the bucket toward a $100,000 goal, the fundraiser taught me a lot about my coworkers.

I learned that they’re as good-hearted as they are hard-working. You see, I lost both my parents to cancer. My sister-in-law is a childhood Leukemia survivor. For me, cancer anything is personal and difficult to talk about. The amount of support I felt from my coworkers was overwhelming. Sure, we love hot dogs at Oneupweb. But 47 hot dogs later, I know we love each other even more.

Thank you, Oneupweb, for all the support!

Every donation counts! Donate to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society today! And if you do, swing by the Oneupweb office and I’ll cook you a hot dog.

Think Oneupweb sounds like a cool place to work? It is! Check out our digital marketing job openings.

Up Next

Locally owned franchises are valuable sources of steady employment, tax revenue and economic resilience. Especially during economic downturns, franchises have provided localized insulation from unemployment and offered communities of all sizes increased access to healthcare, paid vacation and other benefits compared to non-franchise businesses. Get into the small-town economics of franchising and why patronizing a...

Read More