SUCCESS STORIES: FUNDRAISING ADVICE & INSIGHT WITH THE BLACKFISH BRIGADE

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Blackfish Brigade is dedicated to spreading awareness and bringing an end to the captivity and maltreatment of marine animals.

The group launched their first Fabrily campaign on May 5th to raise awareness for their cause. Their first campaign has been a great success; they completely surpassed their selling goal of 20 items and ended up selling 118 shirts! Blackfish Brigade has generously chosen to donate the proceeds from their campaign to the Animal Welfare Institute.

A few members of the Blackfish Brigade have kindly provided us with some insight into their campaigning experience with Fabrily and offer tips and advice on launching a successful fundraising and awareness campaign.

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Can you provide a bit more information on the Blackfish Brigade – your mission, a bit about your team, projects you’re working on , etc.
Blackfish Brigade officially began as a Facebook page in December 2013, but we started a Facebook event, ‘Tell SeaWorld’s Concert Line-up To Cancel The Show’ on November 27, 2013.  The purpose of the event was just as the name indicated. As fans of many of the groups who had signed on with SeaWorld, we were devastated that they may perform at such a location. A fellow activist, Mike Garrett, had petitioned the Barenaked Ladies asking them not to perform. Barenaked Ladies had cancelled their show because of the controversy surrounding BLACKFISH The Movie. So we thought, if one group would cancel, hopefully others would open their minds and hearts to see that captivity is cruel and cancel their shows as well. So, we asked performers at the annual SeaWorld concert series (Bands, Brews, and BBQ) to cancel their performances. Most of the original line-up did cancel their shows! We had NO idea the amount of support we would receive or the momentum our ‘event’ would have. It took on a life of its own. And so, Blackfish Brigade was born. We have been joined and supported by thousands of people who defend these animals with love, dedication and passion every day. The people who have joined us and continue to join us are amazing. We could not do ANY of what we do without them.

As time went on we realized this was much bigger than just stopping a concert series at SeaWorld. So we have changed the name of our ‘event’ on Facebook and have broadened the scope of what we are doing. Our goal is to, one day soon, see laws passed (like California’s AB 2140, Blackfish Bill) that will prevent Marine Mammals from being held prisoner and exploited. We would like to see animals protected instead of abused. We believe we will see every tank empty and the animals back in the wild where they belong. We also educate companies that may sponsor or endorse captive Marine Mammal facilities about the horrors they support.  In addition to seeing an end to captivity our attention is also focused on bringing an end to the suffering of ALL Marine Mammals. This includes The Grind in the Faroe Islands, drive hunts in Taiji, Japan as well as other slaughters being done in the name of tradition and greed.  

Why did you decide to use Fabrily for this awareness campaign?
We knew we wanted to use t-shirts to raise awareness and funds to help end captivity. Oceanic Preservation Society (OPS) had used Fabrily for fundraising efforts and they seemed pleased with the service and attention they had received. Also, we had ordered from Fabrily for other campaigns and were very satisfied with the product and service.  

How has your campaigning experience been so far? Would you recommend using Fabrily to other organizations who wish to raise funds and awareness for a special cause?
We have been very pleased with Fabrily. We have received AMAZING care from our Fabrily Representative. Kate is always pleasant, quick to answer any questions and always willing to help. She makes it seem like she is across town, not across the globe! I would definitely recommend Fabrily to anyone who is planning a fundraiser. It has been such an easy experience. We will absolutely have another campaign with Fabrily. 

You have chosen to donate proceeds from this campaign to the Animal Welfare Institute, why did you choose this organization?
Animal Welfare Institute has been dedicated to the protection and support of animals since their start in 1951.  It was that dedication, to Marine Mammals specifically, that led us to want to donate to Dr. Naomi Rose and the rest of the AWI team.  Their fight to help pass California’s AB 2140 has been daunting and very expensive. We support their efforts and appreciate their determination. If this law passes, the face of captivity in America will change forever.

Can you provide any promotional tips or specific examples for other campaigners hoping to launch a successful campaign too?
I suggest using social media to its fullest potential when promoting their Fabrily campaign. Sharing photos and promotional pictures about the campaign EVERY day on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and any other form of social media available. Posting in different groups on Facebook will help raise awareness also. Remember, friends and family are also potential customers.  

Would you use Fabrily again in the future for another fundraiser or awareness campaign?
We definitely plan to use Fabrily again! In fact, we plan to launch another campaign within the next month.

Anything else you’d like to add about your campaign, your cause, inspiration, etc. etc.?
This entire experience has been very rewarding for me. Our shirts will start conversations and raise awareness about the cruelty of the captive Marine Mammal industry. Never underestimate the power of a great t-shirt! Thanks Fabrily! 

The Fabrily Team would like to congratulate Blackfish Brigade on all the great work they’re doing and on the success of their campaign – you can visit their Facebook community page for more information on the group and to get involved in the wonderful work they’re doing. If you’re interested in starting your own fundraising campaign please click here to use the Fabrily TeeMaker to launch your campaign – if you have any questions or require design help please email campaigns@fabrily.com

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