Ten Fundraising Ideas for Student Programs 

1. Donations

  • Create a video or letter explaining why you are requesting donations and why you want to be a part of this specific program and send it to family members and friends.
  • Secure sponsors for each place medal earned at Regional Student Convention (e.g., $10 for first place, $8 for second place).

2. Serve-a-thon car wash at a car dealer

  • Secure sponsors for each car washed. (Students may earn much more for each car than if you charged.)
  • After securing a sponsor per student, go to local car dealers and offer to wash their cars for free. They wash their cars on a regular basis anyway, and you can engender much community goodwill and have several hundred cars in one location.

3. Car wash for donations for your school, church, or neighborhood

  • Advertise a "Free Car Wash."
  • Have a donation bucket available when each car is finished. Many people will donate more than you would have charged.

4. Singing telegrams

  • Choose a time period when students will be available (a week, two weeks, a month).
  • Offer telegrams for Christmas, Valentine's Day, birthdays, anniversaries, etc.
  • Have a list of appropriate songs from which people may choose.
  • Put together a group of students who can sing well, then take orders.
  • Make sure you schedule the telegrams so they can be delivered on time.
  • You can also offer candy and flowers for an additional cost.

5. Silent auction

  • Solicit donations from local businesses and families from the church and school for goods, services, and gift certificates (lawn care, babysitting, dinner for two, etc.).
  • Place a form beside each item or flyer for people to write their assigned number (this works better than names) and monetary bid. Bidding continues throughout the day until the designated closing time. The person with the highest bid at the end of the day purchases the item for that amount.
  • Contact the buyers, and give them a deadline to pay for and pick up their items.
  • Serve lunch as an added event. If the food is donated, this will be pure profit.
  • Position a bake sale table in the hall.
  • Be sure to advertise! This may be your only expense but will enhance the success of your auction.
  • Make this a yearly event, and people in your community will look forward to it. It works well in November when people are doing their holiday shopping.

6. Discount cards

There are companies that will help you do this, but doing your own will increase your profit.

  • Ask for discounts from local businesses such as "buy one, get one" items, or free items.
  • Print the company names and their offers on a card.
  • Laminate the card, and sell it for a price commensurate with the number of discounts offered. This is good advertising for the businesses that support your ministry, and it is almost all profit for you.

7. Jog-a-thons, jump-a-thons, bowl-a-thons

Solicit sponsors for laps jogged, number of jumps with a jump rope, number of pins in a bowling game, etc.

8. Concession stands or bake sales at your school's sporting events

Nachos and hot dogs are easy to serve and are popular at ball games.

9. Fundraising opportunities at local restaurants and sports arenas

Often local fast food restaurants or sports arenas will donate a percentage of their sales for a night if a school will provide students to staff the facility that night. (There may be age requirements.)

10. Professional fundraising companies

Sell candy bars, greeting cards, wrapping paper, etc. The percent of profit varies from company to company.