Fundraisers are events or sales designed to collect funding for a school, community, church, or other group. Different ways to make money include product sales, special events, and those that provide services. Many events seek donations, while others require a predetermined amount for the purchase of a product or service, or simply for attendance.
Many groups choose to sell products to raise funds. Although nearly any product can be sold, candles, soaps, t-shirts, wrapping paper, magazines, popcorn, and fruit are traditional fundraising products. Sales of phone cards, shopping discount cards, coupon books, and discount tickets are also common because the inventory does not require a great deal of storage space. Plants, coffee, organic products, and even sports team posters can also be used. In a product sale, orders are generally taken first; then, when the product is available, it is delivered or picked up.
In the service category, common choices are bake sales, car washes, and babysitting services, such hosting a parents' night out. Groups can also collect used toner and ink cartridges or gather general recyclable materials and redeem them for cash. In the event of a car wash or parents' night out, the group can either preset an amount for the service or accept donations in any amount.
Family portrait sales are a combination of the service and product categories. Groups might also sell personalized letters, such as Dear Santa or Valentine love letters, as a fundraiser. Other fundraising products include first aid kits and kids' identification cards.
The types of special event fundraisers are numerous. Some groups hold auctions or raffles, making proceeds off the sale of donated goods. Others choose one of many different types of activities and host a walk-a-thon, bowl-a-thon, kick-a-thon, or even bounce-a-thon, which involves jumping on a trampoline. At these events, participants receive donations from sponsors based on how many times, or for how long, the specific activity is completed.
Pancake breakfasts, spaghetti dinners, rubber duck races, and golf tournaments are popular fundraisers. In these events, participants buy tickets or pay an entrance fee. Rather unique fundraising special event ideas include a radio dedication, in which listeners pay to have a song dedicated, and hosting a variety show or comedian performance. In a car bash event, participants pay for the opportunity to swing a sledge hammer at a donated car.
Some groups choose seasonal events as a way to raise money, and sell products such as Christmas trees or wreaths, pumpkins, or spring bulbs. Sales of personalized items, such as tote bags, hats, key rings, or laundry baskets with a school or organization logo, can also raise funds. Some organizations sell memorial plaques or personalized bricks that are displayed in a public place. Online fundraising is also an option, and groups can affiliate with various shopping sites and receive profits from online sales.