Featured Idea of the week:

  • Alice’s Kids – Recently Featured on Celebrity Jeopardy!
    • Alice’s Kids (aliceskids.org) is an organization that helps kids who need help with covering fees and other school related items that other non-profit organizations won’t pay for
      • IE: sneakers, competitions fees, field trips, yearbooks
    • “Working with a network of hundreds of teachers and social workers, Alice’s Kids pays for such items because we believe…A little help…goes a long way.”

A Couple Tips to Start:

The main ideas for your fundraisers are two-fold: you want a high return on any investment you make, but you also want to make sure it is something that is fun and that kids and families will want to be involved with. Motivation is always important, but without a fun element, the motivation wanes quickly. 

Another point to consider is that setting clear goals is crucial. Just setting out a jar to get money donated into does not do much unless you state your purpose, set your goal, and what the funds are going directly toward. 

  • For example: raising money for a new buzzer system? Design fun posters showing them! 
    • Demonstrations go a long way, too! 
      • Set up a booth at lunch where kids can try out the older buzzer system (if you have one), and ask them questions. This might also help you find more players!
  • Trying to raise money for plane/train tickets to Nationals? Say that! Say where you are going, why it’s a great trip and what it could mean for the school if you win. Bragging rights go a long way, especially with both High School and EMS Nationals being held in Washington DC in 2023. 
    • For example: With all the historical significance of the area, next to Arlington Cemetery and two Metro stops away from the National Mall, the trip can be seen as both fun and educational, which for raising funds from the community can be seen as a bonus. If one were to write to VFWs or American Legion posts and say “hey, we have this great competition coming up in DC, right near these places and we will go pay our respects to your fallen comrades in your honor,” they may be willing to host fundraising events for your school.

Nationwide ideas

These are ideas can work anywhere in the country, whether in a major city or in a rural school district.

For More Nationwide ideas that work, as well as links to corporations that do sponsorships for student programs, visit: Fundraising Ideas 

Regional Ideas

Some of these ideas work better in smaller towns, and some work better in larger municipalities, but are worth considering if you have these options available!

  • Spaghetti dinners held at Legion halls or VFWs
    • Contact local delis or restaurants and do a team night where the families of the teams serve, and all proceeds go to the team, including any tips left!
  • Trivia nights at the school, teachers versus students or parents versus kids!
    • Put them on the stage for people to watch and charge admission (Teachers V Students, because who wouldn’t want to see the kids beat the teachers???), –From Peter Schmidt, Eastern Pennsylvania Outreach Coordinator
    • or hold a weekend event where locally formed teams pay a small fee to compete.
  • Paint-Along nights
    • Contact the paint and sip teachers, see if they can do a non-alcoholic fundraiser for schools so kids can paint, too!
  • Town Scavenger hunt
    • A scavenger hunt is a great way to raise funds for your small group. Plus, supporters of all ages can participate and enjoy the event.
    • Create a course, hide items around your community, and write out your clues. You should also find a prize for the winner(s). 
    • Charge a small fee for those who want to participate and charge a little more for groups because the scavenger hunt will be easier with more people.
  • Movie nights held in the gym
    • Can sell tickets and concessions.
    • If there is a surplus of big boxes people have, sell the chance for little kids to decorate them and use them like mini cars and create a “drive in” feeling for them.
      • These are proving popular in the times of social distancing to help with maintaining spacing.
  • For more regional themed ideas, check out our fundraising ideas document!

Outside the Box Ideas

So sometimes people want to do something outside the normal selling of chocolate bars or coin drives. These ideas will have your schools and communities talking and helping you get to your goals!

  • Amusing/Annoying Music between classes fundraiser
    • Find a song found universally annoying by both students and teachers
      • Justin Bieber, Baby Shark, Rebecca Black’s “Friday”, What Does the Fox Say etc.
    • Play it during all class breaks with the idea that any money donated would go to a fund to get it turned off. Set a clear goal for the fund, and let the bad song play!
  • Tag the Bag
    • It’s pretty simple. Grab the suitcase you’re going to use for travel and some markers. For every donation someone makes, tag your bag with their name or a design of their choice. You could name a specific amount if you want, but if you set it for something like “airfare for getting to Nationals” while raising funds other ways, you can set a concrete number per person.
  • Flocking/Forking Yards
    • Sort of a nice prank type deal; you get people to pay for you to fill a friend’s yard with pink flamingos or plastic forks, pinwheels, etc
      • Also means you can reuse said items!
  • Battle of the Bands
    • Music is a hobby for many Middle/high school students. Organize a battle of the bands at your school. Charge the bands, as well as friends and family who come to see the show.
    • Can sell concessions to increase funds
  • Escape Room Saturday
    • Set up an Escape room (or two or three) at the school on a Saturday
      • Each room a different theme, but still school related
    • Have the team kids put together the clues and themes as a team building exercise
    • Families or groups pay to do a room, the teams would do a wipedown with lysol wipes during re-sets of the rooms.
    • It’s family friendly, and has proven to be popular world-wide and is easy to adapt for regions, as well as difficulty. Also, rather cost effective, as writing the clues only uses printer paper and maybe use props on loan from school theater departments.
  • For more Out of the Box Ideas, check out our Fundraising Ideas Document!