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With the new school year, it’s time to start creating your fundraising strategies, including setting your fundraising goals and coming up with a plan to reach them.

But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with the top fundraising ideas to get your students and families excited and help your school exceed your fundraising goals. Read on to see the top 10 fundraisers for this year, plus tips to get you started.

In this blog you’ll learn:

Tips to Get Started 

  • Begin by outlining the goals you have for the year and the funds you will need to accomplish them.
  • Fundraising does not have to be a one and done event. You can do it more than once throughout the entire year! The key is to have a plan and offer variety so you do not exhaust your donors. 
  • Consider working with a fundraising company like Booster that offers a huge variety of fundraising solutions so it’sa one-stop-shop for all of your needs. They can help map out your year, saving you valuable time and increasing the funds you raise. 

Top 10 Fundraising Ideas for Your School 


1. Sell Discount Cards 

This fundraiser is a great way to provide potential donors with the opportunity to support your cause and score great deals on stores and restaurants they already love to shop at. 

When to Host 

Selling discount cards is a great option year round! They can also be marketed as gifts or stocking stuffers if you choose to sell them around the holidays. 

2. Join Company Fundraising Opportunities 

Register your school with businesses such as Shutterfly, Amazon Smile and Staples which will donate a percentage of purchases by families and community members back to your school. This is usually done through an online store front or by using a school ID number at checkout. 

When to Host 

This is a year round fundraising opportunity that requires little effort once you have registered. You’ll just need to let families know your school is participating in the programs. Make sure to share often through school announcements, especially during prime shopping season such as back to school and holidays. 

3. Get Moving with a Fitness Fundraiser 

Host a fun run, color run, glow run or dance-a-thon to get students up and moving while also building community and school spirit. This type of fundraiser will require more heavy lifting, so you may want to consider using a fundraising company such as Booster, which has proven to help schools raise 60% more!

When to Host

There are opportunities to host a fitness fundraiser year round but you will want to consider the season and weather. While glow runs and dance-a-thons are indoors, fun runs and color runs are outdoors, so depending on where you are located, you will need to pick an appropriate season. 

4. Create Custom Gear 

This is an excellent way to build some school spirit! From t-shirts to water bottles to hats to bags, Booster has a huge selection of custom gear you can customize with your school colors and logo. Order in bulk to sell at a school event or set up an online store with no upfront costs and Booster will only ship what you actually sell.

When to Host 

Time your sale around when your gear will be in the most demand such as special sporting events, during a spirit week, back to school or holidays.  

5. Restaurant Fundraiser 

The idea behind this top fundraising idea is for a school to partner with a restaurant. On a specific day the restaurant donates a portion of proceeds to the school. 

There are many national chains that participate in this type of fundraiser or you can ask a local establishment. Leading up to the big day, encourage families to make plans to dine out or takeout! 

When to Host 

If possible, try to make it an ideal time for families. If the restaurant is donating proceeds from takeout, a weeknight is perfect for busy families. On the other hand, if you are encouraging dining in, try to request a weekend. 

It is also worth taking into account the time of year. Asking families to spend money eating out during more expensive times such as the holidays or after all that back to school shopping may not be ideal.  

6. Promote Box Tops for Education

This has been a top fundraising idea for many years. But now, in the digital age, it's easier than ever for families. Whether they shop online or in a store, all they need to do is scan their receipt in the Box Tops app and your school gets a donation! The most time consuming element of this fundraiser is spreading the word and educating families about the benefits.

When to Host 

Families are purchasing food year round, so your school should be earning year round too! Make sure to share friendly reminders throughout the school year, especially at the beginning for new families. 

7. Raffle Gift Baskets 

Task each classroom with coming up with a creative themed gift basket through donations from their families. From “Game Night” to “Day at the Beach” to “Movie Night” the options are endless! Then host an online auction and let families and other community members place bids. 

When to Host 

This fundraiser will require some work from families and classroom parents so you will want to make sure it's a time of year that they are not already bogged down with other tasks. 

8. Whip Up a Bake Sale

Ask families and school faculty to bake up their tastiest treats to donate to a bake sale! Then set up shop before or after school and let hungry students, teachers, and even the outside community buy something delicious. You can even take it up a notch and customize tumblers with your school logo and colors to sell alongside coffee and hot chocolate! 

When to Host

What makes a bake sale a top fundraising idea is how versatile it is. A bake sale can be repeated throughout the year with different themes. You can sell hot chocolate and holiday cookies in the winter and lemonade and donuts in the spring—get creative! Make sure to consider when your school has the most walking traffic to reach the most donors.

9. Organize a Product Sale 

From popcorn and cookies to wrapping paper and kitchen gadgets, Booster has a huge selection of high quality catalog goods. This type of fundraiser allows your donors to feel good about purchasing things they already want or need while also giving back to your school!

When to Host 

While a product sale is great any time of year, choosing to host it around the holidays when people are searching for the perfect gifts may drive up sales even more. 

10. Ask for Direct Donations 

This is a simple and effective way to raise funds quickly and easily, making it another top fundraising idea. If you are going to ask for donations from families and the community, it is helpful to share exactly what you are raising funds for. Donors are more likely to give when they can see how their money will be used. 

Use an online fundraising platform such as MyBooster to make it easy for families to share their fundraising page quickly via text, email and on social media and expand your outreach to anywhere in the world. That’s what makes direct donations one of the top fundraising ideas for schools: it’s easy to start, easy to share, and easy to track!

When to Host 

This type of fundraiser should be tied to a specific goal so host it whenever you're actively working on that project. You should also take into account any other fundraisers the school is planning so there isn’t a conflict.

Additional Ways to Raise More!

  • Ask for Sponsors: If you are hosting an event based fundraiser or creating custom gear, sell valuable ad space to sponsors in exchange for them offsetting some of your costs. It’s a win-win way for your school to save money and local businesses to have the opportunity to raise awareness for their brand. 
  • Take Advantage of Corporate Matching: Many companies have corporate matching programs to support fundraising efforts. If you use Booster’s online fundraising platform, donors can easily search to see if their companies will match their donation.
  • Use a Reward System: Motivate students and families to participate in your fundraisers with rewards. This can be anything from earning a pizza party for the classroom that raises the most to small treats for individual accomplishments. MyBooster offers a prize tracker system to make the process simple and easy. Or go with one of Booster’s fitness fundraisers and let us take care of the prizes for you.

As the new school year approaches, preparing a successful fundraising strategy using these top fundraising ideas can set your school up for success. Plus, if you follow our tips, not only will your school achieve your goals but you will also build community and school spirit with families and students working together toward a common goal. 

Get Started!

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