Unequal, insufficient funding for U.S. schools has long driven the need for fundraising efforts to...
The Best Fundraising Ideas for School Clubs
From music to photography to debate, there are endless options for school clubs that enrich the lives of students by providing a place to explore what they are passionate about. Like any school group, clubs need to raise funds for necessities and to offset out-of-pocket expenses for families.
In this article you'll learn more about:
- Tips to Get Your Fundraiser Started
- Fun and Easy Fundraiser Ideas
- How to Make Your Fundraiser a Success
Unsure on how to get started planning and raising funds for your group? We’ve got great news! Read on for six creative fundraising ideas for school clubs, plus tips on how to ensure your efforts are a success!
Tips to Get Started
- Create a plan! Your club needs to plan out meetings, events and even goals for the year—make your fundraising efforts part of the discussion! This is most helpful to do at the beginning of the year, but you can revisit as the school year progresses as well.
- Set your goals. Make a list of expenses for your club this year. This may include transportation to a special event, supplies or new technology. Subtract your club dues and any other funds you have in the bank and the difference is your fundraising goal for the year. None of these fundraising ideas for school clubs can be effective without a defined goal.
- Start planning! Depending on your goal, you can now determine if you need to host one or multiple fundraisers throughout the year to raise the funds you need. If you will be executing more than one of these fundraising ideas for school clubs, make sure to space them out and aim for variety so you can count on repeat donors.
- Pick dates with purpose. Before firming up dates for your fundraisers make sure to take a look at your school and community calendars. There may be special events or dates that could help drive up sales for your fundraiser such as selling custom gear during a festival or product sales around the holiday. Equally important is to make sure you are not selecting dates around another group’s fundraiser. This will, of course, hurt your sales.
- Gather resources. Once you have a rough outline of your fundraiser you need to make a list of the resources your club will need. This should include things such as supplies and volunteer hours.
6 Fundraising Ideas for School Clubs
Now that you have an idea on what goes into getting a fundraiser started, it’s time to decide which of these fundraising ideas for school clubs is the right fit for you! Each club is unique and fundraisers are not a one-size-fits-all. Selecting a school fundraiser that fits your group’s needs and interests is important to encourage participation and raise the maximum amount of funds.
Sell Discount Cards
Who doesn’t love a great deal? This fundraiser is a win-win for donors as they can purchase cards to support your club and get great discounts at restaurants and shops they already love and visit.
Why It Works: Even members of your community who may not have heard of your club will still be interested in these cards! Make sure to highlight how quickly the offered discounts pay for the card and watch your sales sky rocket!
Best Time To Host: It’s always a great time of year to get a discount, so this fundraising idea for school clubs is a hit year round! This fundraiser does, however, require some dedicated time from your club members to get the word out and make sales. For this reason, planning your fundraiser when your club is less busy as well as when academic responsibilities are not as high is ideal.
Tip to Raise Even More: Have your club members get their entire family involved—sharing on their social media pages, at work and with friends and family.
Play to your strengths and host a fundraiser where you earn funds for doing what you already love! This format can work for just about any club topic, get creative!
For example, if you are a running club, have donors pledge a certain amount of money for each mile you run during a designated week. Have a book club? Collect pledges for how many pages you read!
Why It Works: This fundraising idea for school clubs will really highlight what your club is all about and give your members a moment to shine! Plus, it can double as a way to get the word out about your club and recruit new members.
Best Time to Host: If recruitment is an additional goal, the beginning of the school year is an optimal time to kick off this fundraiser since this is when students are deciding what to join and where to spend their time.
Tip To Raise Even More: Use an online fundraising platform to collect pledges easily and save your club members valuable time. Plus, software such as MyBooster allows you to reach donors all over the world, so you can expand your outreach and raise even more!
Host a Special Event
This is another fundraising idea for school clubs that you can customize depending on what your focus is. Think about what you can provide your community that they would enjoy.
If you’re a cooking club, host a special dinner. If you're an art club, put together a gallery night and encourage other students to submit work. A talent show is also a great option to involve students outside of your club which will expand your reach in the community.
Why It Works: Providing a source of entertainment that involves more than just your immediate club members allows you to reach donors beyond just friends and family. Even if people have no attachment to your club, they will still be interested in a fun day or evening out.
Best Time to Host: To be successful, you should absolutely review local calendars to make sure your event will not conflict with something else. When asking donors to attend, it’s also helpful to take into account when families' schedules are already busy such as holidays, sports seasons or vacations. You should also consider whether a weeknight or weekend would attract more people.
Tip to Raise Even More: Custom event gear, t-shirts, hats and bags are all great options. You can design an event logo or go with your own club logo. Sell this merchandise at your event or set up an online store in advance and encourage attendees to wear their gear to the actual event!
Hold a Car Wash
Without much overhead cost—just some buckets, sponges and soap—you can set up a profitable car wash. Make sure you pick a high traffic area to maximize funds raised! This could be your school parking lot or a local business that is willing to allow you to use their property for a certain amount of time.
Why It Works: Regardless of whether drivers cruising by your car wash have any association with your club, they will recognize a group of students working hard and providing a useful service.
Best Time to Host: Avoid colder months, being outside with water and frigid temps are not a good combination! Depending on where you are located, choose a time of year where cars are at their dirtiest and a car wash will be in the highest demand.
Tip to Raise Even More: If you are doing more than one fundraiser, such as an event, plan to host your car wash first and use it to promote your upcoming fundraiser—it’s free advertising! Put up posters and set up a QR code to learn more.
Organize a Coffee/Snack Stand
Ask your school if you can set up a table outside of your school during pick up and/or drop off to sell baked goods and drinks to faculty and families. Create a sign up sheet for members, friends and family to contribute their specialities to your sale.
Why It Works: Everyone loves a tasty treat and a warm cup of joe! And if you give the community a heads up, your baked goods can cover breakfast at drop off or after school snacks at pick up, helping parents out!
Best Time to Host: If possible, ask your school if you can do multiple bake sales in a row and then a pick the same day each week so it’s predictable. Fridays are always a great day for some indulgence!
Tip to Raise Even More: Create custom tumblers with your school logo and upsell your coffee! Every parent and teacher loves their to-go mugs and will jump at the chance to purchase one that shows off some school spirit!
Offer Tutoring or Lessons
Your club members are experts in your area, so use that expertise to raise funds! If you’re a math club, enlist your members to offer tutoring sessions to other students. Music is your passion? Give lessons!
Why it Works: Parents and students alike will love the opportunity to get some additional help or learn a new skill, especially from trusted members of your club.
Best Time to Host: This fundraising idea for school clubs can be held during the school year or even during the summer. There is always a demand for extra school help and activities! When choosing the time of year for your fundraiser, you should determine when your members have the most availability to offer these additional hours to your club.
Tips to Raise Even More: You can also create bigger group sessions that can double as childcare for parents. Weekly sessions after school or weekend sessions will be invaluable to them! Make sure to advertise your services to younger grade levels!
Make Your Fundraiser a Success
Once you’ve reviewed your fundraising needs for the year and decided on what fundraisers are the best fit for you, it’s time to start planning! As you go through the process, here are a few key points to remember.
- Technology is your friend! Finding ways to save valuable time doesn’t mean cutting corners. It’s about choosing the smartest options. Online fundraising software can streamline the whole process for you, allowing you to collect donations in real time. Plus students can share your fundraiser quickly and easily, reaching more people in less time.
- Be realistic. While big ideas are amazing, make sure you realistically have the bandwidth to make them happen. Your club members are also students and most likely involved in other extra curricular activities as well.
- Consider your donors needs/wants. Whenever you are putting together a fundraiser, always think about what goods or services you are offering to your donors. If you are meeting a want or need they already have, it’s an easier decision for them to support your fundraiser.
- Remember what your goals are. Don’t lose sight of your goals, both monetary and otherwise. They should drive all the decisions you make around your fundraiser. And don’t forget to share these goals with your donors too!
- Enjoy the experience! A fundraiser doesn’t have to be all work, have a good time! When you are enjoying the experience, others in your community will take notice too. This will garner participation and support for your current fundraiser and future ones.
- Take note of your successes. Once you’ve held your fundraiser, document what went right and what you can improve upon. This will help you to create even more successful fundraisers in the future!
When done right, a fundraiser is so much more than just a means to raise funds for your club. It’s a team bonding experience bringing your club members closer together as you work towards a common goal.
A fundraiser is also an excellent opportunity to showcase your school club and all that it has to offer to your community! This can have the added bonus of growing your club, adding new members and more recognition within your school system.
Whatever fundraising ideas for school clubs your group decides to go with, remember to follow the above tips and you will be on your way to successfully meeting—and possibly exceeding!—your fundraising goals for the year!
To learn more about all the tools and resources Booster has to offer to help rock your next school club fundraiser, contact us today.