Friley Hall Penny Wars Raises over $2500 for United Way

AMES, Iowa—Friley Hall residents, staff, and visitors were given the opportunity to donate to the 2011 United Way of Story County campaign throughout the month of September in the annual Friley Hall Penny Wars competition. This year a record total of $2514.51 was raised, more than three times the total raised by Friley Hall in the 2010 campaign.

Each fall the houses of Friley Hall come together to raise money for a charity that is selected by the Friley Senate. For the second year in a row, Friley Hall chose to donate the contributions to the United Way campaign. All of the houses begin the competition with a bucket to collect change, paper money, and checks. Pennies are considered positive points and all other donations are deemed negative points. The house with the lowest point total at the end of each day was eliminated from the competition until only two houses were left standing.

As the competition moved on, many houses became invested in trying to eliminate other houses. Whether they were already eliminated or still in the competition, donors stopped by to put their money in the bucket of their house of choice. The Friley Hall Facebook page was used to keep the participants updated on the standings each night and reminded the houses to keep donating to support the United Way.

In an effort to increase participation, incentives were offered to encourage Friley Hall to achieve different levels of donations. The first incentive for raising money was a popcorn machine at the Friley Hall Desk for a day if a total of $1.00 per resident, or $1250, was raised. If the residents were able to raise a total of $2000, the Friley Hall Staff agreed to take a pie in the face from one of the members of their house.

The last day of the competition, an anonymous donor agreed to match every dollar raised up to a total of $600. As a final push for fundraising on the last day, the public address system in the building was used to make an announcement. Dodds and O’Bryan, the two remaining houses, were able to raise a total of $681.09, and with the matching donor the total for the day was brought to $1281.09. Dodds house came out victorious this year, defending their title from the 2010 Friley Hall Penny Wars competition.

Friley Hall Penny Wars was able to raise more than 50% of the total goal for all Iowa State University students even though the population of the building is less than 5% of the total population. With more than $2.00 raised per resident, the residents are excited to be able to get free popcorn from the hall desk and the opportunity to pie their Community Adviser or Hall Director in the face.

Over the three week period of raising money the Friley Hall community was brought together in support of the 2011 United Way of Story County campaign. Beyond the monetary benefits to the United Way of Story County, the residents of Friley Hall were able to build a stronger community that will sustain throughout the entire year. Friley Hall traditionally has a number of returning students each year and many of them will use the results of this year's program to fuel competition in future years and ultimately enhance the Friley Hall, Iowa State, and Story County communities.