CONNECTSO WAS FOUNDED AS AN INNOVATIVE ALTERNATIVE TO FUNDRAISING IN THE
K-12 EDUCATION COMMUNITY!
I have three school-aged kids, so I am no stranger to school fundraisers. I have fond memories of selling chocolate bars and popcorn tins door-to-door when I was a kid, but with my own kids, their fundraisers were somehow my fundraisers. I was finding that the norm now was that parents got all of the fundraising forms, made a plea on social media to their friends or brought the form to the work lunchroom, teachers did all the coordinating, and the schools were getting minimal portions of the proceeds. And to make it even more “fun”, all of the schools in my area do their fundraising during the exact same time period so the market was “saturated” with requests from parents to buy each others kid’s cr@p (oops...perfectly curated goods). Despite these efforts, I was still receiving emails from teachers asking for supplies, requests from the PTA and clubs for funds for various activities, and I discovered teachers were still spending a lot of money out of their own pockets for their classrooms.
After spending a few hundred dollars on fancy cheesecakes and popcorn tins that I threw out because no one in my family ate, I realized that the old school fundraising that I did as a kid was not going to be what was needed to get schools the community funding that they are now so desperately lacking.
The last straw (paper or reusable straw of course...save the turtles!) was when I went to a PTA meeting and heard the fundraising committee boasting that the popcorn company was going to give the school 5% of leftover proceeds back to the school (!). So that’s after the costs for the fancy brochures, incentives, etc. I wanted to support my kids’ school, like we all do, but thought there has to be an easier way for everyone involved in the coordinating and the buying to support these fundraisers and a better way to maximize what the “cut” is that schools are actually getting.
ConnectSo uses the concept of Social Commerce (which is the “So” in ConnectSo) to put the power of raising money for schools in the hands of teachers, schools and parents. Through everyday purchases, parents are giving to schools on a continual basis through their spending power, and teachers and schools are earning money on a monthly basis to purchase much needed items for schools.
I have always had a passion for education and schools, but more importantly, the company has a great team of advisors who are much smarter and cooler than me and who inspire me every day.
Feel free to reach out to us and tell me what was the craziest thing you ever bought from a school fundraiser.Let’s get schools the funds they need by shopping through social commerce!
Hiren Patel, Founder & CEO