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7 Ways to Make DI Stronger: Letter From Our Executive Director

By: Michele Tuck-Ponder, Executive Director

Seven ways to make Destination Imagination stronger, more strategic and better than ever – but we need you to make that happen.
(Yes, you – dear reader.)

Dear DI Family,

It’s time for all of us to harness our collective imagination! This is not the easiest blog post for me to write, but here I go. Brené Brown says, “Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.” So let me dive in.

<Taking a breath> The truth of the matter is with the needed cancelation of the 2020 Destination Imagination tournament season (for all of our collective health – because DI relies heavily on tournament registrations), our organization lost the majority of the funding that fuels our soul-filling, STEAM-rolling, larger-than-life mission to inspire our participants to achieve anything they can imagine in life.

You may be thinking – “Is DI closing?” “Will the organization that I love and care about deeply cease to exist?” Rest assured, the answer is NO. With that said, it is going to be a challenging time and we are calling on you as one of our biggest supporters to help get us where we want to be – better than ever.

At DI we know imagination is endless. So right now – if you’re reading this – I need you to help me harness our collective imagination to do great things for the Destination Imagination organization so we can continue to provide great things for all of our children.

If our students can solve half the challenges we put forth, we know, together, that we can handle this one.

With the financial losses DI suffered due to the on-going global pandemic, the DIHQ staff stepped up IMMEDIATELY – as you would imagine they would. We pivoted from an in-person Global Finals to a virtual “Summer of Creativity” event, which by all accounts is highly successful. Every DI staff member has made a personal commitment to DI by agreeing to furloughs, salary reductions and have donated more than they ever have. Every. Single. One. That’s because they want to ensure that DI can weather this difficult time and come out even better on the other side, for you and for the world. Now, we are turning to our community for support.   

So, what can you do from home you wonder? What follows are seven things that I can imagine, but I imagine you can think of others too. If you do nothing after reading this post except leave a comment, cheer us on, or share with others, you will have helped us soar. If you can do more than that, IMAGINE what we can do together.

Seven things you can do BEFORE you close this blog post.

1) You can make a gift to DI! Here’s the link. DI transforms participants into creative leaders. You make that possible. When you give to Destination Imagination, you ensure that more participants have better access to DI’s unique educational experiences that can inspire them to achieve anything they can imagine in life. Now, more than ever, kids need opportunities to learn the skills that DI fosters. When you share the gift of creativity, Destination Imagination is able to build resilient kids and communities all over the world.

BTW, Did you know that many workplaces match, double or even triple gifts to non-profit organizations? Would you make a gift, right now, while this blog post is open, to DI with the largest gift you can imagine… and then check if your company will match it? We also have a new initiative – the Box & Ball Society – for those with the ability to make a gift of $1,000 or more. Contact [email protected] for more information. You can also mail in cash or check donations to: 1111 S. Union Ave. Cherry Hill, NJ 08002 C/O DI advancement.

2) You can introduce us to your place of business! DI loves connecting with corporate sponsors that want to get in on the creativity, the fun and the learning. You can share your passion for our organization and strongly encourage your company’s participation. Contact us at [email protected] to find out how you can help.

3) Create your own birthday fundraiser. If you (or your DI passionate kid!) have a birthday coming up, you could do an amazing Fundraiser on Facebook (and/or social media) with us as the chosen charity! Here’s a link on how to set that upTell your friends!

4) You can head over to Amazon Smile and make sure Destination Imagination is your selected organization. If you’re shopping at Amazon anyway, you can ensure that we are your chosen charity. Also, if your company uses Amazon for bulk purchases, please make sure office managers choose us too!

5) You or your DI enthused student(s) can write an email right now to your friends and loved ones asking for support for our amazing organization. Here’s the link for our donation page for you to include.

6) Write a positive review of DI online. You love DI and it is important that other people know that you do. In order for others to understand just how much our community cares about us, it is really helpful to share that as a review. We’d love to be positively reviewed on either Google, Facebook, or Great Nonprofits. Or, if you have a blog or are active on social media – you can share your passion for us there!

7) You can imagine other ways to help! Your ideas, support and vision are what we need to grow stronger than ever. I am imagining the biggest, best and most amazing 2020-21 DI season. I hope that you share that vision with me – and know together, like our amazing DI teams – we can make the impossible possible.

Thank you for all that you do for DI. In this time of turmoil and great uncertainty, it’s great to know that we have an active, engaged community willing to work together to ensure that DI has a bigger and better future ahead.

Stay Healthy. Stay Creative.

Michele

P.S. Due to staff furloughs, DI headquarters will be closed the weeks of July 20, August 17 and September 14. Please plan accordingly!