I am a member of a Middle School PTA that is looking for a new fundraiser for the school. Many of the ones used for elementary (movie night, popcorn Friday, puppet show/magician, etc.) just don't work at this age level (11 to 15). We have been doing some projects but only net about $200. Our bank account is slowly dwindling due to expenses and we need a money maker that will get at least $1000 profit.
We have lots of volunteers but would like to keep the work to a minimum (of course!). Catalog sales are done to death in our community and, personally, I dread seeing another one. Something unique would be great. Appreciation in advance for any and all ideas. Oh, yeah, the school has about 825 students, lots of active parents and a very supportive administration.
Melody from Tri-Cities (Eastern), WA
Since December I have been working as a consultant for Home Interiors. They have a good fund raising program selling candles,bath items and candle tins and shades. They are very reasonably priced (nothing over $20) and the group selling them gets 50% of what is sold. If it is a tax exempt organization, they pay no taxes on what is sold. Of all the fund raisers I've ever dealt with I don't think I've seen one as simple to do and yet when the money is turned in to the consultant it's in your hands that very day.
By Sharon, Ky
How about a spaghetti dinner or pancake breakfast? Parents and kids can cook and serve and the food that is needed is very inexpensive. (02/20/2006)
Gold Canyon Candles offers a very easy set-up with 40% profit up front. If you are interested in more information you can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I have had some very happy customers, and they would be glad to share their stories! Mimi3 (02/20/2006)
Let everyone know that you are fundraising and would like to spare everyone the trouble of selling something. Send a note home with each student, stating your needs and goals and ask parents or kids to contribute no more than a $2.00 donation, or whatever works, to your fund by a certain date. Kind of like PBS pledge time.
This could be money earned at home to support their school. If you like, give a nice certificate or sticker that you have created, thanking them for their support. I would recommend doing that at the time of donation. Ask the admin to have an fun assembly involving EVERYONE at the end. Skits and music are good. Hopefully, this could become a yearly tradition.
You could put up charts with dollar amounts but please, NO STUDENT NAMES as that might embarrass those without the resources to help.
A Former Teacher
We just finished a bingo night as a fund raiser. There were costs involved...we rented the bingo ball thing and had to buy the bingo cards. We sold the cards for $1 and they were only good for one game. Different color cards are provided so you can say you are playing with green now, for example. We sold soft drinks, popcorn and candy. We had good prizes that had been donated - getting the prizes from area businesses took some time.
I can tell you what we did when I was in school and it was my very favorite. A bake sale. My mom always made popcorn balls and Choclate peanut butter oatmeal no bake cookies and they always sold out first. Bake sales are so fun and everyone can make something different and alot of each thing so if you have alot of parents joining in you can make quite a bit of money. And dont just sell them at school you can sell to the community. (02/20/2006)
My little bros were in all kinds of sports growing up so my mom joined the booster club. Their main fundraiser was to have one night a week/month and have a certain amount of people work at the local bingo hall. The gave us an agreed upon amount of the earnings. Just make sure that the volunteers can handle the smoke. It can get really bad in there. (02/20/2006)
Our school just did a Gift Auction and we netted $9200.00! We had a sit down dinner (chicken francaise), a live band donated their time, and we had a turn out of 266 people. This took alot of planning and time, but it was worth the profits in the end. (02/20/2006)
Our school got families together on a Saturday to put together frozen lasagna meals. We sold them for $8 each (for 12 serving size), and made several hundred dollars. These are excellent if someone wants to buy several to freeze or take one home to bake the same day.
Second idea is to sign up with Market Day at www.marketday.com. We use this on a monthly basis at our school. Each grade level gets a month to earn money for their classroom(s). An order form gets sent home with kids and gets turned in a few days before the monthly pickup date. You get wonderful frozen foods, vegetables, side dishes, desserts, etc. They are not too expensive, and the school gets 10% back from each monthly sale. We make anywhere from $300-$600 every month. Sometimes the class mom gets parents for the month's grade level to participate in setting up the sale items for pickup. It is not very timeconsuming, and people can order on the Internet and even pre-pay with credit cards for their orders. Or, you can pay cash/check when you pick up on the day of sale. It is only one day a month and takes about 1 hour to set everything up, and about 30 minutes of clean-up when the sale pickup hour is over. Very easy, and makes lots of money! Try it! Plus, you can participate anywhere in the country, as they ship everywhere. www.marketday.com
By Krystyna Crawford
I am the secretary for the school PTF (same as PTA but we call it Parent Teacher Fellowship) We have done the Auction in the past where familes and organizations donate items. It was a lot of work but fun. One thing we tried this year was a school wide yard sale. We sold spots for $15.00. The family could sell their own items. Or we took donations from anyone that was doing fall cleaning and instead of trashing or giving away, they donated to the school. These went to a school wide space and all the profits from this space went to the PTF. We also did a bake sale which was all donations as well that we sold. The best time to do it is when the community is having a yard sale day. It worked great because so many families made the rounds. For a school of only 400 students we brought in over $500. We also do a cheesecake/cookie dough sale that we start the week before Thanksgiving and collect the first week in Dec. Then the items were delivered by the second week of Dec just in time for Holiday baking. This brought in over $2000.00. (02/20/2006)
My daughters preschool has a $1 per child raffle each year. Make up raffle tickets and offer prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place drawings. We can usually sell quite a bit of tickets for this, as everyone is glad to help out a child's school. They usually have a "big prize" for 1st (such as an inexpensive tv), and smalller money amts for 2nd and 3rd place. (02/21/2006)
Try to use ideas that use "OPM" Other peoples money. Some restaurants will allow you to have a percentage of sales on your designated night (Max and Ermas for example). We had local restaurants offer tastings and tickets were $15 for adults. (02/21/2006)
How about a dress up day for the kids? We did this in high school as a student council fundraiser and it was very popular and a good money maker.
Kids paid a dollar to get to wear a hat or their pajamas or halloween costume or whatever you decide. Our school had a somewhat strict dress code and any break from that was appreciate by the kids! We were a small school (around 250 students) but we'd make around $200 each time .. teachers got into the spirit of it too and it became a fun tradition that's still going on today, ten years later!
The best part is it's all profit .. the only expense we occured was making posters and then we used the schools supplies for that! There's no selling involved and it can be customized to fit what you're kids are interested in .. you could even have contests for the craziest hat or best pjs to encourage kids to enter and the winner would get a small prize.
Feel free to email me for more information. .. mx racer367 @ yahoo.com (remove the spaces)
Good luck to you and bless you for working so hard for your kids school!
Have a dance for the kids and charge admission. Get a band or DJ to donate their time and equipment or you can use your own stereo equipment and do it yourself. You can sell concessions there too. (02/22/2006)
Our school does a jog a thon, and we focus only on that, we have great parent volunteers and we average about $68,000.00, yes, that many zero's. We make it a big deal. (04/02/2006)
By Heather Brook
How about planning a huge Yard sale? Send home notices for donations, recruit volunteers to set up and price things and advertise. Yard Sales at schools bring alot of people. (04/21/2006)
How about a Fall Fair? Or Spring, Winter whatever. Give all the kids in your school an afternoon off and set up stations in the school in almost every room! (10/21/2006)
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