Resource Area for Teaching (RAFT) VI
Founded in 1994, Resource Area for Teaching (RAFT)’s mission is to help Pre-K-8 educators transform a child’s learning experience through hands-on education to inspire the joy and discovery of learning. It works with educators to bring innovation, problem solving, and creativity to their teaching. RAFT provides a comprehensive set of science, technology, engineering, art, and math (STEAM) resources: project kits, summer camps, Maker Mobile Van visits (van equipped with all the tools, materials, and staff support to deliver RAFT’s unique programming as a classroom extension), tailored educator workshops, and free online learning activity sheets. Activity Kits are pre-packaged activities that an educator can use to work with a single child or an entire class. RAFT also produces Design Challenges for educators, many of which incorporate the Stanford d.school’s design thinking process. RAFT has a large store and educator workroom in San Jose where teachers and parents can purchase kits and other recycled, upcycled, and low-cost STEAM learning materials.
What are the most effective marketing initiatives to rebuild Resource Area for Teaching’s membership?
In the year before COVID, RAFT teacher membership had increased from 4,800 to 5,900, including a small number of parent memberships too. In the first two years of the pandemic when school campuses were closed and teachers/students were out of their classrooms, RAFT membership declined to just over 2,500. Membership since has slowly increased to over 3,000 but RAFT needs to get back up to pre-pandemic membership numbers to achieve financial stability and sustainability. Over the next three years and by fiscal year 2026, its revenue goals are:
- Store income increasing from $800,000 to over $1,200,000
- Education Income increasing from $400,000 to over $1,300,000
- Development Income increasing from $1,100,000 to over $2,100,000
RAFT is asking for an ACT team to review and evaluate its various membership growth initiatives and marketing plans, identifying and recommending new ways to reach teachers and parents in the Bay Area. Should it invest in new pathways such as PTAs, Boys and Girls Clubs, large corporate employers? How can it best utilize social media? What can it do to create more awareness of its store (located in a standard Silicon Valley industrial neighborhood) and the broad products and services RAFT provides?
This is a Fast Track project:
- Scope: Focused, specific organizational issue
- Team Size: 3-4 consultants
- Project Duration: 3 months
- Estimated Time Contribution: 25-30 hrs total (per consultant)
Read more about the Fast Track Project Consultant role.