50 Successful School Fundraising Ideas

fundraising ideas for schoolsSelecting a fundraiser for your school can be a challenge, as there are so many options available today. Here is a list of fundraising ideas your school could consider for your next fundraising need!

  1. Bake sale: Parents, students and staff can contribute baked goods for a one-day sale. Children and/or parents can be invited in to buy these treats.

  2. Raffle: Sell tickets for the chance to win a particular prize – this could be a basket of goods, a 50/50 draw for cash, or another prize donated by the community or school.

  3. Gift card sales: Working with a known provider, sell gift cards for local retailers and a portion of the proceeds will go back to your fundraising efforts.

  4. Quiz night: Divide participants into teams (or ask them to sign up as teams). Prepare a list of questions based on a particular theme and have a volunteer “Quiz master” who can ask the questions. Sell tickets to participate and offer a prize for the winning team.

  5. Bingo: Organize a bingo night and participants can pay to play with an opportunity for the winners to get small prizes.

  6. Pancake breakfast: Sell tickets for a delicious breakfast hosted in the school gym one morning before school starts. Offer food and refreshments for a set price.

  7. Popcorn sales: Rent a popcorn machine and offer a special treat over lunch one day or at a school game or concert.

  8. Winter carnival: A team of volunteers can help to run various games and activities for students and their families to come and enjoy. Sell tickets ahead of time and create a winter-themed event. Consider selling entry tickets or having each activity valued at a certain number of tickets (i.e. hot chocolate = 1 ticket, snow bowling = 3 tickets). 

  9. Summer carnival: Similar to a winter carnival, come up with fun outdoor activities and events that will draw in the community to buy tickets and participate. Consider selling entry tickets or having each activity valued at a certain number of tickets (i.e. balloon toss = 1 ticket, relay race = 3 tickets).

  10. Flower or bulb sale: Sell flowers or bulbs to school families and the community to get ready for spring.

  11. Halloween bake sale: Host a themed bake sale. Consider focusing on healthy treats and asking children to “pay” for the goods with pieces of Halloween candy.

  12. Chocolate sales: In preparation for Valentine’s Day, set up a themed chocolate sale that guarantees delivery by February 14th!

  13. Pizza day: Organize a special lunch and collect orders ahead of time from each classroom.

  14. Flea market: Promote a school-wide flea market where families can bring in items they want to sell from home, such as old books or toys. Consider having specific tables for each type of item to keep it organized with proceeds going to the school or charity.

  15. Craft sale: Encourage children and their parents to get creative and create crafts that the public can purchase. Consider having each classroom come up with an idea that they can contribute.

  16. Fun run: Organize a Fun Run or Fun Walk that the students can participate in. Encourage them to raise pledges from their families or ask for a specific donation amount (i.e. $1). Make it a fun event with music, snacks, and high energy.

  17. Car wash: Generate awareness around the community about a car wash hosted in the school parking lot. Offer to wash cars of parents and people driving through the neighborhood for a donation.

  18. Coupon book sale: Working with a well-known provider, sell books of coupons for local restaurants, stores and vendors, so that part of the proceeds are donated back to the school.

  19. Holiday wreaths: Help to bring some holiday spirit to students and their families by selling festive holiday wreaths in November. Wreaths could be fresh or artificial.

  20. Dance-a-thon: Invite students and families to partake in a dance-a-thon. They could collect pledges based on how long they stay on the dance floor! Ensure you have a good playlist of upbeat songs, and consider selling snacks and refreshments for additional cost.

  21. Talent show: Showcase the talent of your students and faculty by hosting a talent show. Encourage individual or team participation, and sell tickets for family and friends to watch.

  22. Gift basket bidding/auction: Gather donated items from local businesses and create gift baskets that students and parents can bid on. Example: a “Movie” themed basket with cinema tickets, specialty popcorn and candy.

  23. Silent auction: Gather donated items or create vouchers for services offered and host a silent auction in the school gym. Participants can walk around for a limited amount of time and put their name and offer price down on items they are interested in.

  24. Cake walk: Have volunteers bake delicious cakes for the event. Place the cakes in a big circle with a number on each one. Players walk around the circle to music. When the music stops, the organizer draws a number at random. The person standing in front of that number gets to keep the cake.

  25. Haunted house: Host a Halloween-themed event. Sell tickets for students and parents to walk through the haunted house. Gather volunteers to play spooky characters!

  26. Teacher charity game: Generate excitement among the students about attending a special sports game that has teams made up of their teachers! Sell tickets to watch the game, and consider having a concession stand. It could be a serious game or something comical.

  27. Teacher charity concert: Round up your teachers for a musical concert for the students! Sell tickets to watch the teachers perform songs – either as a big group or in small groups. Teachers could get creative and invite well-known performers to join them or have community sponsors. 

  28. Recycling round up: Encourage students and staff to bring in their recyclable goods from home for a charity drive. Provide a specific place in the school where they can be collected.

  29. School supply lists: Certain office/school supply stores will give back a portion of proceeds to your school or classroom. Check out your local retailers for a program like this, and provide this information to parents in the summer or at the start of the school year.

  30. Gift-wrapping station: Around major holidays, advertise a gift-wrapping station where parents and students can bring their unwrapped gifts and have them wrapped for a low cost.

  31. Read-a-Thon: Read as a class or encourage individual reading during a specific period of time. Ask for donations based on how much you read! There are also organized programs that you can follow as a class with specific activities, books lists, and donation forms.

  32. Food drive: Collect non-perishable goods for a specific local community charity.

  33. Dress down day: Ask for a specific, small donation amount for students and teachers to participate in a Dress Down Day where they can wear jeans or comfortable clothing.

  34. Fashion show: Encourage local retailers to provide clothing items that can be worn by students for a well-organized fashion show. Sell tickets ahead of time or at the door.

  35. Multicultural fair: Showcase the many delicious foods and unique talents of your students by hosting an event where students are encouraged to share their cultural traditions with one another.

  36. Game day: Plan an afternoon of board games and indoor activities that students and teachers can sign up for in advance, and participate in a number of games around the school. Offer small prizes for winners.

  37. Recipe book: Have students contribute family recipes and create one school-wide recipe book. Sell the book to parents and community members.

  38. Charity ball: Host an evening event for students and the community to attend and contribute part of the proceeds going to a local charity. Have volunteers ask for décor and refreshment donations from local businesses, and develop a specific theme for the evening.

  39. Online crowdfunding: Test out an online crowdfunding platform to get donations for your cause. Think of creative incentives that you can give to people who donate, with bigger incentives for larger donations.

  40. “Give It Up” challenge: Encourage students and families to give small donations, usually change, towards a goal set for a day. If the goal is met, teachers commit to giving up something that is part of their every day routines such as coffee, sweets, etc. This can be a weeklong event with the individual day goals increasing.

  41. Art exhibition: Create an event where student artwork is showcased – set it up as a “pop up art gallery”. Attendees can “bid” on the artwork, and the school can give part of the proceeds to a local charity or community group.

  42. School sleepover: Working with a team of volunteers, host a school sleepover in the gym. Create a detailed list of what each student needs to bring, and plan fun activities, games or a movie for the kids to enjoy. Provide snacks and breakfast in the morning. Charge a specific amount, and anything above the costs can go towards the school’s fundraising needs.

  43. Live auction: Secure high priced, sentimental items to be auctioned off one evening and have guests compete for the highest bid. Or, have classes out-bid one another for pizza parties, new class books, a classroom iPad and more.

  44. Battle of the Bands: Audition local talent to battle it out in a fundraising concert. Many may perform for the exposure alone, and you can sell tickets to the event. Be sure to have everyone vote on their favorite and give that band a prize.

  45. Principal challenge: See if your principal or a favorite teacher will agree to do something drastic – for example, shave his or her head – if you reach your fundraising goals.

  46. Movie Night: Partner with a movie theater that will offer discounted tickets or donate a portion of each ticket sale.

  47. Scavenger Hunt: Have participants sign up in twosomes for a fee to participate. The teams will compete in an around-town scavenger hunt. Give out prizes for first, second and third place teams.

  48. Parents Night Out: Plan an evening where parents can drop off their little ones for a couple hours. Coordinate some games or a movie for the kids and charge a babysitting fee per child.

  49. Rubber Duck Race: Number and sell rubber ducks to participate in a “race.” Drop the lovable ducks down a river or in the middle of the pool with a designated “finish line.” Hand out prizes to the winning ducks.

  50. Spa Night: Organize for various spa professionals to give a day or evening of pampering! Seek nail technicians, make up artists, and hair stylists to donate or discount their services to benefit your school.

Your next fundraiser is sure to be a hit if you come up with the perfect fit for your group! Best wishes for money-making success!

Article content provided by FlipGive. FlipGive is an online fundraising platform that helps people raise more money faster for their school, sports teams, club or charity. Fundraisers earn up to 40% by getting people to shop at popular retailers and brands. For more information, please visit flipgive.com.

Additional Resources

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