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American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

How American Foundation for Suicide Prevention raised over $294,000 with a Facebook dog walking Challenge ​


Health and Medical


North America

Solutions used:

Facebook Challenges


American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) harnessed the power of Facebook to raise money and create a brand new community of over 8,000 members through their Facebook Challenge of Walk Your Dog 50 Miles in February.

Set the scene

Who is American Foundation for Suicide Prevention?

AFSP is a North American nonprofit and their mission is to save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicide. They have 73 chapters across the United States and a variety of programs to help meet the needs of their communities. 

The team were keen to run a virtual Challenge to find new supporters but due to the sensitive nature of their mission it was a priority for AFSP to maintain a personal touch

By using GivePanel’s tools and following our best practices, AFSP were able to connect with their fundraisers and run a hugely successful pilot campaign. Here’s how they did it.

What people are saying

GivePanel works best for us because personal connection with the donor is what is most important, and GivePanel provides the tools and services in order to make that happen! I would recommend GivePanel on the fact that they really are the gold standard in terms of personal touches with the donor to engage them and make them feel like they're involved, and not one of many.

- Ashly Alberto

The challenge

Walk Your Dog 50 Miles in February

A Facebook Challenge is a virtual event that runs solely on Facebook and leverages the power of social networking through ads, groups and fundraisers. This means: 

  • Lower acquisition costs
  • More fundraisers
  • And no fundraising platform costs!

AFSP chose to run their first Facebook Challenge as the model allows the opportunity to test at a small scale and low risk. If successful, the team would be able to acquire new supporters, engage them in their mission, increase the number of Facebook donors, and uplift income through Facebook fundraising.

So how did it go? The team achieved a 31% increase in average raised from their regular organic fundraising to Facebook Group Challenge fundraising and were able to collect contact details for over 3,000 ‬fundraisers for this event.

Their success was largely down to their focus on creating a hyper-engaged community that shared personal stories and connection to cause. They found supporters that were new to their cause and therefore were engaging with a whole new audience during the Challenge.

They found that the dog walking model fit them and their supporters and most importantly, they were able to retain the personal connection with their fundraisers despite it being a virtual event.


The GivePanel difference

Meeting supporters where they are

With‭ ‬GivePanel‭ ‬you can run virtual events and Challenges entirely on Facebook and manage all of your data with ease‭. ‬Our Facebook Group event registration forms sync with Facebook transaction data so that you have all of your data in one place‭. ‬Our fundraiser engagement and messages tools mean that you can give Facebook fundraisers the experience they deserve resulting in more contact details collected and funds raised‭.‬

GivePanel‭ ‬gives you the analytics and reports you need to track campaigns and enables you to build custom imports for your CRM‭. ‬All of this saves significant staff time‭, ‬allowing you to focus on what matters‭ ‬‮–‬‭ ‬fundraising‭!‬

As well as our online platform‭, ‬GivePanel‭ ‬offers a range of consultancy and outsourcing services for nonprofits to help them get to the next level with Facebook fundraising‭.‬

The results

The Challenge in numbers




Total Raised


Average Raised


Active Fundraisers

Final thoughts

Top tips from AFSP

  • You need to engage with your supporters to encourage them to fundraise for your nonprofit. Engagement and fundraising go hand in hand. 
  • Find a connection between your nonprofit’s mission and the Challenge you choose. AFSP found an incredible connection between mental health and dog walking. The rest is history.
  • Test and learn as you go! Apply those learnings to make your next Facebook Challenge event more successful than the last and increase ROI.


Ashly Alberto

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

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