Does anyone have experience in starting fundraising for equipment in a department which typically does not fund raise?
I live in a small city which has a moderate to large tax base, but is pretty broke for a number of reason, and while the Fire Department has a decent sized budget, it seems that Parks and Trees and the PD have all the money they need for new trucks, tools and toys (mostly the PD). Apparently, city departments don't pass their used vehicles to the Fire Department in this city, because a used Parks and Trees contact truck that is only 10 years old would be a tremendous step-up compared to our current brush truck.
Our Brush truck is an old Army CUCV with a home made skid unit on board (Steel 200 gal tank, small water pump and a lot of exposed PVC piping, with a garden hose on a reel screwed to the top of the tank.) The steering is unsafe at any speed (I left the roadway three times at <40mph (there's no speedo so no way to know exactly how fast), and no turn signals. It had no power until three minutes before I left for the call because our city's OMI department wouldn't fix it until our acting Chief called to say we had a large brush fire and needed it fixed NOW. Ironically, OMI said they just happened to be on their way to Autozone to get batteries just when he called....how convenient.
So, I now have a personal mission to raise money for and purchase brush units for the City and for the County using donated funds. Like I said, the city has a moderate tax base, but the county has a huge tax base (lots of $1million+ houses and Army Colonels from out local Army post live out there, as well as several high-end communities built right in the marshes.
I've gotten several people on board to help, and I have several ideas kicking around to raise money, but would like any advice experienced fundraisers have in getting started.
The best fundraiser idea we have so far is to hold a golf tournament here in the county, but none of us have experience in putting one of those together, so I am soliciting your help.