Resources / Nonprofits
Posted by Angel Rutledge
Creative and Easy Ways to Raise Money for Your Organization
Often, the most challenging part of fundraising is coming up with a creative idea that will motivate the troops. Since the best idea is often found in having a lot of them, you’ll be off to a great start with your next fundraiser with these 50 easy fundraising ideas.
- Choose the Torture - Have donors pay $1 a vote to decide which form of “torture” to inflict on your organization’s leader (i.e. dye hair, dress as a clown, trade a job for a day).
- Bingo Is Its Name-O - Get prizes donated and charge an entrance fee.
- Party Like It’s 1999 -Get entertainment and food donated and charge a ticket fee for each guest.
- SpellS-U-C-C-E-S-S-Hold a spell-a-thonwith each contestant collecting donations for the number of words they spell correctly. The top winners receive donated prizes.
- Smoothie Stand - A healthy and yummy twist on the tired ol’ lemonade stand.
- Strike Gold - Participants ask friends and family to donate old jewelry they no longer wear and turn the gold in for cash.
- 50/50 Raffle- Sell raffle tickets and offer half of the proceeds as prizes.
- Going Once, Going Twice - Seek out service and product donations. Hold an online or live silent auction.
- Buy a Meal - Volunteers donate homemade meals to sell.
- Karaoke Style - Have participants raise pledges for their commitment to lip-sync and sell tickets to the performance.
- Working at the Car Wash - Coordinate group members to wash cars in a high traffic location for donations.
- Cook-Off - Solicit local celebrities to enter their best dishes and have people pay to vote on the winners.
- It’s a Wrap - Coordinate with a store to offer gift wrap services during the holidays.
- It Tastes so Sweet - Get baked goods donated to sell at a large event like a dance or basketball game.
Collect money for a capital campaign with an online sign up.SAMPLE
- Trendy Bracelets - Sell silicone bracelets that promote your cause.
- Scratch Cards - Donors receive a sheet of coupons for a small donation of a few dollars.
- For the Birds - Deliver a group of fake pink flamingos to a donor’s yard and leave a note explaining the cause and asking for a donation to “replant” the flamingos in the yard of the next “victim” the first donor designates.
- Another Man’s Treasure -Collect gently used items from group members to be sold at a yard sale.
- Text It - Use a service that allows your organization to receive donations of $5-10 by text messages.
- Bail Me Out -Handcuff two willing fundraisers and let them loose when they raise “bail”.
- Sticky Fly -Sell pieces of duct tape for donors to stick your group’s leader to a wall suspended above the floor for a portion of an event.
- Sit-a-thon - Offer babysitting services for a designated evening or two.
- Make it Up - Send out invitations to a made up event and offer invitees tickets to support the cause without having to leave home.
- It’s a Bust - Sell balloons for $10 each and insert a number in each that corresponds to a raffle ticket given to the purchaser. Pop a balloon for each available prize and read off the winning number.
- Nacho Dough - Sell a lunch or dinner of nachos and a cookie at a church or school when participants already need to stay through a meal.
- Go Hairless -Volunteers commit to shaving their heads if a specified amount is raised by a deadline.
- Make the Grade - Have students get pledges for “A’s” and “B’s” at the beginning of a quarter and collect the donations after report card time.
- Change It - Start a competition between classes, families or individuals by giving them each a coin jar to collect change for a designated amount of time. The one with the most collected wins a prize.
- Skip a Meal - Sponsors commit to giving up a meal together and give the money saved to the designated cause.
- Holiday Shop - Collect new and gently used items from your volunteers and resell them in gift baskets at a holiday shop.
- Rent-a-Worker - Volunteers commit to working for an afternoon doing any odd jobs sponsors “hire” them to do.
- Egg ‘Em On - Go door to door negotiating with each neighbor for how much they will pay to see you do a crazy stunt with a raw egg (i.e. juggle, crack it on your head, throw it up and catch it).
- Go Casual - In schools or offices with specific uniforms, everyone gets to dress down if they raise enough money to meet a goal.
- Pay it Forward - Give each person in your organization $10 and a specific amount of time to use the funds to raise as much as they can for the cause.
- Reverse Raffle - All potential sponsors get a raffle ticket and sell it back for $10 to avoid getting their name drawn to do something embarrassing.
- Cookbook -Group members offer their best family recipes for a cookbook.
- Fore! - Hold a tournament at a golf course that will offer reduced greens fees and get prizes donated. Getting local celebrities to participate will draw more participants.
- Diva it Up -Design and sell t-shirts advertising your group’s cause.
- Work of Art -The younger members in your organization create a drawing that is transferred onto note cards, t-shirts, mouse pads or coffee mugs for purchase.
- Spa Night - Offer to have female volunteers give manis, pedis and 5 minute massages at a Women’s Night Out for donations.
- Halloween Collection - Use this door-to-door holiday to collect coats, candy, or change for your charity.
- Give it Up -Sponsors commit to give up a regular activity for a month and donate the money they save to the designated cause.
- Capital Campaign - Set a goal, make the direct ask, and avoid an endless slew of small fundraisers.
- Social Media Call - Let potential donors know about your fundraising need through Facebook and Twitter.
- X Marks the Spot - Sell golf balls for $10 each and send them all down a hill with the “tosser” blindfolded. The 3 that get closest to the center of a taped “X” below win cash prizes.
- Eat for a Cause - Ask a local restaurant to donate 10% of their profits on a designated night for your cause in exchange for encouraging supporters to eat there.
Organize volunteers for a fundraiser with a sign up.SAMPLE
- Matching Gift -Ask a corporation or individual to match any donations your organization collects in a specified amount of time. Then, contact potential donors about giving to match the gift.
- Birthday Pledge - Ask for donations to a favorite cause instead of birthday gifts.
- Who’s Got Talent - Hold a talent show with an entry fee for each act and sell tickets.
- Pump it Up - Coordinate with a local gas station to have volunteers serve as gas station attendants who pump gas and clean windshields for donations for a day.
If you'd like to read about even more fundraising ideas, check out additional articles on the SignUpGenius Resource page. You can also leave your own creative idea for a fundraiser or let us know which ones you like best from this article in a post below. In order to protect our users, we ask that contact information and names of specific companies not be posted. May your next fundraiser be the most successful one yet!
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