Fundraising for Small Groups Newsletter

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December 16, 2018

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Choose a Theme for Your Next Fundraiser

by Vicki Blaze

Put together a comprehensive fundraising event plan and entertain your guests by choosing a theme for your next fundraiser. Give your fundraiser direction and life all at the same time.

A theme is a unifying subject or idea. It will provide a basis to plan all of your event details under one umbrella. For instance, all advertising, printed promotional pieces, decorations, activities, gifts, and sponsors should reflect the overall theme.

In order to choose an appropriate theme, you must first understand the purpose of your fundraiser. Are you raising funds for enrichment programs, a new computer lab, a new playground facility, or new books?

Once you’ve established the purpose, choose a theme that reflects that purpose and make a list of the key aspects that surround it. For example, if your school is planning an event to raise funds for a new playground, your list would include: children playing on the playground, growing, monkey bars, swings, slides, playground mulch, and plants and shrubs surrounding the playground. From these ideas may develop the themes, Slide into Spring or A Year of Growth.

The theme, A Year of Growth, reflects the idea that you hope to ‘grow the playground’, ‘grow plants and shrubs around the playground’, and ‘watch the children grow as they use the playground through their years at the school’. Further reflect this theme in printed promotional material, decorations, activities, prizes, and sponsorships. Develop a logo of three children, flowers, or trees in a row each one larger than the next. Run a raffle sponsored by a local nursery. Decorate tables with potted flowers to be later planted at the playground site. These are like building blocks that all together support your overall theme.

A theme provides a planning guide for your volunteer committee members to follow. If they understand that all details must relate back to the theme, their planning and ideas will be more focussed, efficient, and effective.

The details of any event can be planned based on a simple theme and both parents and children will enjoy the storyline you’ve made come alive!


About the Author:

Vicki Blaze is the publisher of PTO Ideas, the site where parent-teacher organizations share school fundraising and program ideas. For more information on choosing a theme and planning fundraising events, visit PTO Ideas at

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