Fundraising is a hot topic. Whether the school is in charge or the school council runs the projects fundraising can come with its set of rewards and challenges. There is much debate about the schools in more affluent neighbourhoods being able to raise thousands of dollars and those in financially challenged neighbourhoods not being in the same position. While no real solution seems on the horizon, fundraising remains a fact of life at most schools.
Below are some helpful tips to consider when planning your fundraising strategies.
- Establish a fundraising budget at the beginning of the school year and the activities that will help achieve this goal. Avoid adding additional fundraisers throughout the year to meet changing objectives.
- Some schools find that asking for a set contribution per family, per school year, rather than hosting several fundraising activities throughout the year, works best for them.
- Consider surveying your community to determine which fundraising activities they would like to see offered at the school.
- Don’t overwhelm your school community with too many fundraisers. Even if they only require a small contribution, like a loonie or toonie, parents do not like to feel like they are sending money with their children every week.
- Look at fundraisers that the students enjoy the most i.e. pizza or hot dog day etc. These types of activities are often welcome by the parents who don’t have to make lunch that day as well.
- Think about ways to make money from items that parents are already planning to buy. There are fundraising opportunities through companies that sell summer workbooks, Christmas flowers, cookies etc.
- Communicate the purpose of the fundraiser to the community. Not only is it a requirement, people are more likely to support a fundraiser when they know how it will benefit students or the school.
- Remember it is better to raise money in small amounts from many people than in large amounts by a few people. This allows the majority of the community to come together to support your fundraising projects.
- It is important that no student or parent feel ashamed because their family cannot afford to participate in a fundraising activity.
Setting realistic goals and a fundraising plan at the beginning of the school year can help keep your school council focused, on track and successful.
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