Fundraising for Small Groups Newsletter

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December 16, 2018

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10 Ways To Put Fun in Your Fundraiser
by Kimberly Reynolds

  1. Make it fun every step of the way
    Fun is part of fundraising. Don't make it drudgery to be a volunteer or a participant. Remember that they're giving up their free time to help. Plan fun things to do during each stage of the process that reward everyone.

  2. Fun incentives
    Offer a Cream Pie Attack party to all sellers reaching a certain level. Have a fun day where key organizational figures do funny things for meeting goals. Examples: Shaving their head, dyeing their hair blue, wearing a funny wig, dressing like a clown, risk the dunking booth, etc.

  3. Take pictures
    Everybody loves to see themselves in a picture. Take some candid shots, have everybody pose, all ham it up for a group photo, etc. Be sure to post them where everyone can enjoy them. Reward with prizes for the best, the goofiest, the worst dressed, etc.

  4. Show appreciation
    Show your appreciation to all facets of your organization and supporter base. Be sure to do fun things that aren't fundraisers. Example: Line up discounts on tickets to athletic events, go on group outings, provide doughnuts for volunteers, etc.

  5. Fun merchant prizes
    Work with local merchants for great prizes that mean the most to your sellers. Work deals for movie passes, merchandise discounts, gift certificates, miniature golf, IMAX theater trip for top ten, etc. Follow our Merchant Plan guidelines.

  6. Build in fun goals
    Do an event based solely on having fun. Have key organization members commit to doing crazy things once certain revenue goals are reached, say in $1000 increments. Let things build to the climactic moment where the head cheese does the ultimate fun thing as a way to reward the group for all their support.

  7. Blend fun and food
    Remember that you can blend fun into even the most traditional fundraising events. Everybody knows what a bake sale is, right? Use a cake walk to sell a large portion of your donated sweets. Kids love it and you'll get more for the desserts than if you sold them outright. Consider having awards for the various submissions and then auctioning off the best pie, cake, etc.

  8. Fun completion activities
    These will motivate your sellers and volunteers as much or more as winning actual prizes. Think about low cost fun events that you could tie to completing certain tasks: Top sales group gets a water balloon fight; all volunteers play in a Powder Puff touch football game an ultimate Frisbee match, etc.

  9. Say thank you
    You can't say thank you often enough to your supporters and your participants. Show your appreciation with heartfelt words and deeds.

  10. Cast party
    Have one for all volunteers at conclusion. Get together at someone's home or in the fellowship hall with everyone bringing potluck. It's a nice way to build goodwill and reinforce a sense of community for future recruiting.

    Make it fun and everyone will come back for more!


Editor's note: Kimberly Reynolds is the author of Fundraising Success and the "web mistress" of She brings a high-powered background to the fundraising arena, including a dozen years of sales experience with Dell and Cisco Systems.

Her book, Fundraising Success, is packed with powerful tips that are guaranteed to boost your group's results. Kimberly focuses on helping schools, churches, and youth sports groups by providing event ideas and advice on organizational techniques.

Visit her website,, and discover some easy ways to help your group.

This article, "10 Ways To Put Fun in Your Fundraiser" - copyright 2002 Kimberly Reynolds, is reprinted with permission.

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