Have a question? Below are the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions.
What's the '14 Swims in July’ challenge?
The ‘14 Swims in July’ challenge for Autism Assistance Dogs is asking our supporters to commit to doing 14 swims over the 31 days in the month of July. Each participant will commit to fundraising for us during this period to raise vitally needed funds to train our assistance dogs for children with autism. Each trained assistance dog provides a lifeline for these children and their families.
When is it taking place?
14 Swims in July takes place from the 1st July to the 31st July 2022.
What is the Facebook Group for?
By joining the Facebook group, you are joining a group of like minded, enthusiastic people who want to take on the challenge but also raise badly needed funds and awareness for Autism Assistance Dogs. The group will support and encourage you to complete the challenge as well as answer any questions you may have. They are there for you!
Join the Facebook group below:
How do I raise money?
By setting up a Facebook Fundraising page, your Facebook friends can donate directly to us. Facebook don’t charge for this service so all the funds received will come straight to us. If you wish to raise money offline, that’s no problem. There will be a sponsorship card included in your fundraising pack and you can lodge or post the money to us when you have completed the challenge.
What is a Facebook Fundraiser?
Facebook has now included a fundraising option on their pages. You can set up a fundraising page and all of your friends can donate directly to your challenge without having to leave Facebook.
Set up your Facebook fundraiser below:
How do I set up a Facebook fundraiser?
Visit our FB Page below:
...and wait for the pop-up to set up a page. Be sure to add ‘July 14 Day Swim’ in your Fundraising page title so we can easily find and thank you!
Need more help on making your fundraiser page on Facebook? See this quick tutorial on YouTube below...
Where will the money my friends donate go?
All the money raised from this challenge by each of the participants will go towards training more dogs to be placed with a child with Autism. We are working on developing our puppy training programme so we can train and place more dogs each year. It costs €22,000 to train one dog and that dog provides a lifeline to each child and the family they are placed with.
How do I get my free swim cap?
Register with us and we will send out a swim cap with your fundraising pack. Included in the pack will also be a sponsorship card, more information about the challenge and how to get started. You can register via the 'register' button at the top of this page or by joining the facebook group:
and following the instructions in the announcement post.
What if I don't raise much money?
We have no minimum or maximum amount that we would like our participants to raise. From our point of view, no matter how much money you raise it will go towards changing the world for a child with autism.
Can I raise money on another online platform like Just Giving?
Yes, if you would like. Facebook lodges the money directly with us and doesn’t charge you or us any fees but if you would like to set up a fundraising page on our website it is the easiest option. Just be sure and register with us to get a fundraising pack and your FREE swim cap.
Is there a sponsorship card included in the fundraising pack?
Yes there is! You can use this card to ask for support from your friends and family in person if you would prefer to use that instead of setting up a facebook fundraiser. If you’re worried about asking for sponsorship online you can always ask people to share your fundraising page (instead of asking them to donate) to help raise awareness for AADI. Please remember it is illegal to solicit members of the public, in a public space, or by going door-to-door for funds unless you have our permission AND a permit from An Garda Siochana. The sponsorship card is for use when collecting sponsorship funds from friends and family and it does not give you permission to solicit members of the public for sponsorship.
What happens if I don't complete the challenge?
That’s no problem, we understand that life gets busy and things happen. You can just lodge whatever sponsorship you have raised with us at the end of the month or if you still want to complete the challenge, you can do so in the following weeks.
Can I start late/early?
Yes, certainly. Our social media pages will be active for the month of July so if you start a bit late or early you can still stay up to date and get the support and encouragement you need to complete the challenge. Just remember to keep your supporters updated on your fundraising page and let them know how you are getting on. The majority of participants will be starting on 1st July but we understand that life can be busy and things happen, so feel free to start whenever suits you best!
Do I have to do the 14 swims consecutively?
No, you can start and finish your challenge whenever you like! You could do your swims once a day for 14 days in a row, or space them out in the month of July. We know people are busy with work, families or may be on holidays! The Facebook group will be active for the month of July so if you start a bit late or early you can still contribute and get the support and encouragement you need to complete the challenge.
How do I keep track of my swims?
The best way is to use your tracker sheet included in your registration pack... just tick the days where you are doing a swim!
Do I have to prove I have done the challenge?
Post pictures and updates on your fundraising page with your swims so we can see you’ve completed the challenge. It is also a great way to show your friends and family who have sponsored you that you're committed!
Can I do more than 14 swims in the month?
Of course. Setting a goal of 14 swims and exceeding that goal would be fantastic! Many people will do more than 14 swims.
How long do I have to swim?
It is completely up to you! Your challenge, your way. You can take a dip in the water for a while or do some laps. As long as you get in the water, it counts as one swim!
I registered for a fundraising pack already but it hasn’t arrived yet?
If you are wondering about the location of your fundraising pack, please email email@example.com with your details and we will check it out for you. Please note that your sponsorship card will take 5-7 working days from registration to be sent out. The swim caps will be sent near the beginning of the challenge!
When will I get my fundraising pack?
All sponsorship card and tracker packs will be sent out within 5-7 working days of our receipt of your registration form. Please allow up to 9 working days to receive it. If you haven’t received it by then, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll follow it up for you. Please note that the swim caps will be sent near the beginning of the challenge!
What is in the fundraising pack?
- A sponsorship card with fundraising tips and tracker sheet
- Your unique reference number
Your swim cap will come separately near the beginning of the challenge in July.
I want to register for more than one swim cap as a family member wants to do the challenge with me but I can’t seem to select multiple swim caps on the form?
It’s great that you want to do the challenge together. Could we ask that you please complete the form individually each selecting their own swim cap. It makes it easier for us to keep track of registrations even if they are going to the same address. You will need a different email address for each individual registration. Get them to fill out the registration form to get their own swim cap for the challenge below:
Can I just make a donation myself instead of doing the challenge/setting up a fundraiser/asking for donations?
Thanks for taking on the challenge. We ask participants to set up a fundraising page and share it with their friends and family. If you are not comfortable asking them for donations you can always ask them to share the page to raise awareness. This is just as important. You can always make a donation to your own page to show how committed you are to the challenge.
If you would like to make a donate, click below.
How do I edit the end date of my fundraising page?
This is a quirk of Facebook Fundraising pages. They are automatically set to run for just 7 days!
You need to manually change the date to 3rd August 2022.
Here’s how to do that:
Go to your fundraising page
Click “Edit” under the main image and headline
Scroll down to the box that says “Set the End Date”
Then click Save in the top right.
Need more help with your fundraising page? Click below to see a quick tutorial...
My fundraiser ended before I finished the challenge. Can you re-start it?
This is a quirk of Facebook Fundraising pages. They are automatically set to run for just 7 days! Unless you edit the end date, it will automatically end. Unfortunately, the only way around this is to set up a new fundraising page so make sure to edit your end date as above.
If this happens, we recommend you set up a new fundraising page, change the end date to the 3rd August and put a post on the new page explaining what happened and thanking those supporters who have already donated to your fundraising page.
How do I get my raised funds to Autism Assistance Dogs?
If you have set up a fundraising page on our website or you've set up a Facebook fundraiser for us then you don’t need to do anything. Your donations will automatically be sent to Autism Assistance Dogs
If you have raised money via a sponsorship card then you can:
- Donate raised funds online via the event page on our website here or
- Lodge the funds directly to our bank account. See details below:
Reference: ‘July Swim’, your name & unique reference no
Bank Name: BOI, Eastgate, Little Island, Cork
Account Name: Autism Assistance Dogs Ireland
Account Number: 88834658
Sort Code: 90 97 08
How will the money I have raised help Autism Assistance Dogs?
All the funds raised will go towards the training of vital assistance dogs. During the challenge we will post updates to the group to show you how your funds will be used and the impact that having an assistance dog has had on our current clients. To help show how your swims really matter, we will share a story every week over the next month via Facebook and email that tells you how you’re making a difference to our clients' lives through this fundraising challenge.
My friend doesn’t have Facebook and wants to take part in the ‘14 Swims in July' challenge?
If you have a friend or family member who wants to take part but is not on Facebook that is no problem at all. They can fill out the registration form and set up a fundraising page on our website here:
We will also send them a fundraising pack including a swim cap and sponsorship card. The swim cap will be sent separately and should arrive near the end of the month of June.
A friend accidentally donated to my Facebook fundraiser. Can you issue them a refund?
Unfortunately Autism Assistance Dogs can’t issue refunds, Facebook must do this. People can request a refund themselves from Facebook by following the below steps:
Send them this link: https://www.facebook.com/help/contact/105616563307791
Select - I donated to a fundraiser on Facebook
Select - I want a refund for my donation(s)
Select - I made a donation by accident. Find their donation in the dropdown and request the refund.
How do I apply to get an assistance dog for my child?
Applications for our Assistance Dog waiting list are closed for this year. However, we would encourage you to sign up for our mailing list. To do so, click below and we will notify everyone when we are once again accepting applications.
How do I apply to get a companion dog for my child?
We will be opening the companion dog waiting list in five/six months' time, so if you are interested see below and complete the sign up form for our mailing list to ensure you receive news/updates in this regard.
If I fundraise enough, can I ‘buy’ an assistance dog?
No, we do not have dogs for sale at Autism Assistance Dogs Ireland. Sadly we don’t have the resources to supply dogs privately and our ethos is that we provide dogs without charge and without discrimination to those who meet our application requirements. Each application is taken on a case by case basis.
I’m having difficulty finding the Facebook fundraising page that I already set up?
On the mobile app or computer, go into your own profile page and down the left hand side there should be a link to your Facebook fundraising page (underneath the intro box). Alternatively go to the drop down menu “More” underneath your cover photo on the top of the page and select ‘Fundraisers’. If you are still having trouble, email email@example.com and we will try and help you.
There are a group of us at my workplace that would like to do the challenge together?
That’s great. We love having teams that complete the challenge together. Firstly, nominate a team captain and he/she can then register the team for all of you. The team captain can register the team below...
Once the team is registered, the team captain will receive an email with a URL to share with all remaining teammates. This URL is an invitation for everyone else to join the team by registering and setting up your individual fundraising page. All of these pages will be linked to the overall team page.
Alternatively, your teammates can search for the team by name and join the team here...
If you need more help, have a look at these short 5 minute videos from Eileen at AADI where she talks you through how to set up a team and register:
Any further questions on the process, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
How do I share my FB Fundraising Page?
How do I change my FB Fundraiser's End Date?
How do I set up my FB Fundraising Page?