Need to raise money for your kid’s school but not sure where to start? It can be a challenging job to work out what will work best. The good news is there’s lots of options, you just need to work out which ones will match your desired fundraising goals.
We’ve compiled an excellent resource of school fundraising ideas to suit every public and private elementary, middle and high school nationwide. So what are you waiting for? Let’s get your school on the way to making money fast.
1. Online donations
Make giving donations easy by adding a form or button to your website. If you don’t have a website or can’t set one up, you can use a platform that handles everything. Usually, there are fees associated with using them but giving platforms, such as GoFundMe, can include the fee in the donation.
Once your online donation website is set up, you’ll love hearing the sweet ping of payment notifications coming through at any time of day.
$$ tip: Add a button or link to your schools:
- website navigation bar
- email newsletters
- email signature
- social media accounts
2. Cookie dough fundraiser
Cookie dough fundraisers are one of the most popular ways to raise money – plus they are fun and oh-so yum!
All you need to do is find a premium cookie fundraising company, such as Dessie’s Table. The process is super simple, they’ll handle the baking, packing and delivery, and all you need to do is get the word out and promote. The hardest part will be selecting the flavors!
$$ tip: Boost your cookie sales by hosting a Taste Tester event at school to pump up excitement ahead of the fundraiser. Extend the invitation and get the whole community excited by sampling the mouth-watering cookie flavors before they buy.
A raffle can be a low-cost option to increase giving. Involve the whole community by getting a big crew together and canvasing local businesses and organizations to seek prizes.
Choose the traditional option of selling physical tickets, or for a small fee, you can use an online raffle platform, like Rally Up, that seamlessly handles ticketing, administration and even picks a random winner.
4. Community cookbook
Another one of those delicious school fundraising ideas is to compile a community cookbook. Put the word out to the school that you want their best recipes – or choose a theme or category. Some ideas are: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Halloween, Independence Day, sweets, snacks, mains or family favorites.
$$ tip: Printing cookbooks can be costly. To offset the cost and add an injection of dollars to your fundraiser, sell advertising space. Put together quarter, half and full-page ad packages and approach local businesses. To entice extra ad dollars, offer a special discounted rate to families at school with a company or provide an early bird rate.
The possibilities with an A-Thon are endless. Anything you can count will work for this type of fundraiser. Get creative and customize it to your school – think pages, steps, dancing, laps. The most popular in this category are Walk-A-Thon, Read-A-Thon and Dance-A-Thon.
A-thon pledge campaigns are based on how many of the set activity the participant completes, and funds are collected after the event.
Going once. Going twice. Gone! Auctions are an excellent way to make it rain fundraising dollars. Whether you make it live, silent, online or virtual, auctions are high-energy events packed with adrenaline.
If you’ve hosted an auction in the past, use that experience and ask these questions:
- What types of items were popular?
- What types of things got very few bids?
- How many people attended your last auction?
If you haven’t hosted before, use your school’s fundraising data and ask the following:
- How much do you raise on average at similar-sized events?
- What’s the average donation amount you receive?
- What’s the largest donation your school has received?
- What age demographics are the average parents at your school?
Use these insights to plan as you brainstorm an inventory of items and packages to procure. Then, target your list to what your audience will be interested in and can easily afford.
$$ tip: Get a team of volunteers together and start planning your event a year in advance. There’s lots of moving parts to these events, so allow plenty of time to maximize marketing efforts to gain as many sponsors and donors as possible.
7. School merchandise
Add a flavor of patriotism to your fundraising efforts with custom-branded merchandise. Every school has a motto, unique colors or other identifying elements making branded items the perfect fundraising idea. The beauty of selling school swag is that it’s not just teachers, students and parents interested in purchasing, but a potential market of past – and future – students too.
Here’s a few winning merchandise ideas:
- Branded t-shirts
- Stationery supplies like pens, pencils and notebooks
- School bags and lunchboxes
$$ tip: Go large promoting your merch. Send letters or emails to alumni and businesses and ask your students and parents to share them on their social media accounts.
8. Gala events
Although typically for the non profit space, gala-type events can be a massive drawcard for those wanting to make donations.
Go large with a glitzy ball or host a cozy trivia night, but make sure you add a popular silent auction to pump up the donor dollars.
The benefit of these events is that they can be annual events people look forward to and plan. Also, the expectation of giving is understood, and people come prepared to splash some cash for a cause.
9. Bake sale
The best fundraisers bring people together, and bake sales are at the top of the list for doing just that. This type of event isn’t just to raise money, but are lots of fun, encourages participation and is relatively easy to organize.
$$ tip: Have plans also to do a cookie dough fundraiser? Have your Taste Taster event at the bake sale. It’s a great tie-in and gives you two bites of the cherry to get in front of your captive – and hungry – audience.
After reading about these magnificent school fundraising ideas, you’ll want to start your next fundraiser immediately. Visit the Dessie’s Table page and find out more or complete the order form and be well on your way to making some dough for your school!