The Birthday Party Mompreneur

Rebecca Schleifer’s entrepreneurial “aha moment” arrived with her oldest daughter’s third birthday.

“The party guest list was 32 people long,” recalls the Dobbs Ferry mother of three. “I looked at my playroom and said, ‘How I am going to fit 32 more presents in here?’”

Schleifer asked guests to tone down the gifts and bring a baby rattle to be donated to children’s hospitals instead. A garbage bag was stuffed full by the end of the party, inspiring guests’ interest and praise. Soon after, she began brainstorming business possibilities.

The result in 2012:, a birthday party invitation website that helps guests donate to one or more of the child’s chosen charities. A portion of the payment goes to the charity; the rest goes to the child’s gift fund. Children learn about giving and can buy something they really want, while party guests skip the hassle of shopping for a gift. Share Your Wish receives a $2.50 fee for each transaction.

The site hosted about 240 parties during the first eight months of 2014, raising more than $33,000 for charity—both figures roughly double the same period in the prior year.

To start the business and keep it running, the Schleifers raised about $70,000 from friends and family. The largest cost: website design and ongoing maintenance.

Westchester 914 Inc.