An entrepreneur and executive in Westlake, Ohio, Joe Matejka was nominated for an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2016. As the founder and president of Custom Fundraising Solutions (CFS), Joe Matejka developed the innovative mattress fundraiser, used across the country in more than 1,800 schools this year.
Created as an alternative to traditional fundraisers such as selling candy or washing cars, the mattress fundraiser invites families to buy something they already need. The average family has four mattresses in their home, each of which should be replaced every 10 years. CFS brings a mobile showroom to each school, allowing customers in need of a mattress to peruse a large selection of high-quality mattresses in all styles and sizes.
Customers purchase a mattress at up to 50 percent off retail prices, while groups can easily raise thousands of dollars in one day, with zero risk. Sales are quick and convenient, and all mattresses come with a full manufacturer’s warranty. For more information, visit www.customfundraisingsolutions.com.
Joe Matejka serves as the founder and president of Custom Fundraising Solutions in Westlake, Ohio, where he has spearheaded popular mattress fundraisers in schools around the area. Outside his professional life, Joe Matejka enjoys various leisure activities, including bicycling.
Despite attempts to raise awareness, many misconceptions still exist among the general public about bicycling. In the spirit of righting these misconceptions, here are three myths about bicycling and why they aren’t true:
There’s a common theme among those who don’t ride bikes that bicycling, on the whole, is not safe. The statistics, however, don’t prove that to be true. In fact, one is more likely to be involved in an automobile collision than a bicycle accident. Also, it is not the bicycle itself that represents a danger, but automobiles who tend to crash into the bikes, typically due to lack of attention.
There is also the prevailing myth that cyclists tend to break more traffic laws than automobile drivers. This narrative has been perpetuated by lawmakers, who have characterized cyclists as perpetual lawbreakers. According to a recent survey of cyclists and drivers by University of Colorado engineering professor Wesley Marshall, however, drivers admitted to breaking traffic laws at a slightly higher rate than cyclists.
For those looking to take up the hobby, it is important to seek out the best information rather than relying on misconceptions that can often be perpetuated.
Joe Matejka is the founder and president of Custom Fundraising Solutions, a business developed in 2005 to help school children raise money. In lieu of the much-offered chocolate almonds and car washes, Joe Matejka’s company initiated a mattress fundraiser which is now carried out nation-wide.
When schools or fundraising organizations hire Custom Fundraising Solutions (CFS) to manage their fundraiser, the company handles the entire process. Rather than children or their parents undertaking the sale of the product, CFS manages all sales and sets up the showrooms as required to display the products for sale.
Participants in CFS fundraisers are not expected to buy anything prior to the fundraiser, nor do they need to collect money or deliver the items purchased by supporters—CFS handles all the finances and distribution, presenting the money raised to the organization after the fundraiser is complete.
Once an organization decides to work with CFS, their primary job is to let the community know about the upcoming fundraiser. This can be done through posters, social media, or by word-of-mouth. Groups who have held fundraisers with CFS have raised as much as $50,000 with a single event.
The inventor of the “mattress fundraiser,” Joe Matejka earned his marketing degree from Ohio University. His first job after college was with a firm that operated traditional fundraisers for schools and other organizations. He later started his own firm which furnished model homes for builders. In 2005, capitalizing on lessons learned in both industries, Joe Matejka invented the mattress fundraiser, and established Custom Fundraising Solutions.
When his children reached school age, Matejka noticed that the products being sold in their schools’ fundraisers – candy, cookie dough, knickknacks, gewgaws, and the like — hadn’t changed from when he was in the fundraising industry. Around the same time, he encountered a statistic that would warm the heart of any marketer (or mattress manufacturer): 9.9 percent of the American population purchases a brand new mattress every year. Combining the two industries he was most familiar with, home furnishing and fundraising, Matejka approached the school football coach with an idea for a mattress fundraiser, and they decided to try it out.
In traditional fundraisers, students take orders for a broad range of products, and deliver them later. A mattress fundraiser is essentially the same, except that those friends and neighbors, as well as students’ parents, are asked to purchase a mattress, if they’re in the market, from a selection on display at the school, often the gym or cafeteria, for later delivery. Not faced with any of the normal overhead, the school can sell the mattresses for a significant discount – in some cases as much as 60 percent — from their normal retail price, and still realize a handsome profit for the school. And because purchasers help the school while buying a product they really need at a great price, the transaction really is win-win.
In that first mattress fundraiser in 2005, Matejka sold 42 mattresses and raised more than $4,000 in a single day. Today, with more than 100 locations nationwide, his company’s goal is to raise more than $10 million annually for the schools with which they work.