D4 Service Frequently Asked Questions

How does service lead to advocacy, and advocacy lead to service?

There is such a fine line between service and advocacy, they really work hand in hand. Are Birthing Kits a service project or advocacy…we think service, but what we are doing, helping to protect 3 lives…isn’t that advocacy? We give a grant to the Sexual Assault Centre from funds that we raise, and we see their needs…so we serve meals, paint, donate to their food pantry, create hygiene kits, donate clothes. And then we partner with them for the Poster Project. And the Poster project is advocacy based, but tied to service…because we need members to find places to hang the posters, and talk to people about them. You sew masks, and donate them to an Indigenous Resource Centre, and advocacy thinks…this is a good fit. So they approach them for how we can help….and members volunteer to build an outdoor classroom for education….advocacy, coming from service.

How can we promote our projects in the media?

We can ensure our service projects are successful by promoting them both before they are held (eg large projects that you need more volunteers) and after they are held to increase the Zonta recognition. Some clubs may have a PR or communications committee which can help you with promotion ideas. A sample media release is on the D4 website, it would be used for larger projects…and can also be adapted for your advocacy or fundraising. The media release would be forwarded to your list of media contacts…newspaper, community newspapers, radio stations for interviews, local TV stations, and any other media that you have in your community. When approaching media, remember that large newspapers may charge a fee, so most look for free advertisement non-profit spots on community TV stations or community newspapers or radio interviews.

A list of virtual fundraising ideas.


Leadership panel, paint night, dance session, bingo night, online auctions, virtual home tours, sewing and selling masks, selling greeting cards, Lunafest, donation asks with a charitable receipt if you have a foundation, walks to raise funds. Toronto club did their car rally, within bubbles and everyone socially distanced. Their members also donated the dinner costs they would have paid for their meeting to the Daily Bread Food Bank. If you have other ideas, put them in the comments and we will share them with the group.

How to invite guests to a virtual fundraiser?

How do you invite guests – using a mail chimp sent to previous attendees of your events, social media, local media, e-invite, thru the chamber of commerce, and an app called Meetup. Lots of different ways to alert people to your event.

How to engage club members through service projects?

When you get new members, and a lot of us have despite being in virtual meetings, ask them for their ideas of things they’ve done… a great way to get new ideas, have them pitch the idea and help organize. Share pictures, and videos of the event…people having fun, so those who may have missed it, will want to attend. And invite speakers, yes even virtually, who can talk about the impact that your service project had on their organization and the people who are supported by them. First-hand accounts really make the difference, make us smile, and want to be a part of it.

Ideas for hands free service projects.

Please be sure you share your hands-free projects with the district by sending to [email protected] with a picture, so it can be shared in the newsletter and the service page on the D4 website…great resources there for you. Birthing kits can be assembled covid-style. Free the Girls donating bras, and assembling them in smaller groups. Sewing projects like masks, period products, cushions. Donation of clothes, food to pantries and homeless shelters, and a number of projects that are posted on the D4 service page under Sharing Club Projects.

How you can use social media to help promote your projects?

Utilize your social media with Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. If you need guidance starting one of them, do reach out to communications. There is also information on the D4 website that can help you from a recent Membership meeting, about creating posts. Make sure you like, share and follow clubs on social media, and then they will do the same for your club. Encourage your members to share posts personally as well. That’s where you can learn ideas for projects, and fundraisers, and speakers. And when you post, use hashtags…in the most recent D4 newsletter, and we hope everyone takes the opportunity to read them when they come out twice a month…because they have a ton of information…use #zontadistrict4 so the posts come together. Use @ZontaDistrict4 for Facebook, @ZontaDistrict4 for Instagram in connection with #Zontadistrict4 for photos and use @zontad4 for Twitter. Read the updated communication guide for instructions on submitting posters, pictures and write-ups and copyright reminders. All communication goes through [email protected], directed to Sandra and Alice for E-News, Sandra for email, Cat for social media, Lori R for Instagram and Sheena for the website…what a team!!

How to get speakers for a virtual fundraiser?

There was a question raised about how to invite a speaker to a virtual fundraiser…the thing with virtual is that your options for speakers are endless and so wide open as people don’t need to travel. The time element is so reduced because it just becomes the amount of time they need to speak (and prepare). Their costs associated with speaking at a fundraiser are greatly reduced, as their time is less, no travelling or associated costs. Don’t hesitate, just ask. Our club is doing virtual events for IWD, and we have a leadership panel of women – women who we would have never been able to have if it was an in-person event. You just need to ask. And the same goes for speakers at your club meetings…our club had the ZI UN committee chair and the D4 Amelia Earhart committee chair as speakers at recent meetings…options are endless when it is virtual.

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Who can you partner with for service?

Partner with other groups and committees – great opportunities to partner with committees within your club, for example:

  • Awards – you are approaching high schools for scholarship applicants, and service is looking for volunteers for a service project, approach the school about both…and if they attend the service project – pitch Zonta, golden Z //
  • Membership – you are advertising for volunteers for birthing kits, posting on facebook etc, and you say come out and find out more about zonta, the birthing kits might draw their attention, and then you have a membership table and someone talking about Zonta and what we do.
  • Advocacy (as mentioned above)

Partner with other clubs – look at working with other clubs in close proximity to you especially smaller clubs who may have fewer members and less resources, invite them to your events and fundraisers…many hands. And partner with your community organizations, like Domestic Violence Centres, Sexual Assault Centres, YWCA, Good Pantries, etc. to name a few, but don’t forget large ones like Rotary or Lion’s Club, you support them, and they will support our events.

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