Unique Fundraising Ideas: A Handy Guide for High Schools
Finding unique high school fundraising ideas can be tricky. But not when Shannon Meyerkort is around.
Shannon is full of ideas when it comes to fundraising. She even has her own blog jam packed with fundraising tips and tricks.
We asked Shannon to write a guest post about high school fundraising and she didn’t disappoint.
Here are Shannons tips for running a successful and unique fundraiser.
High School Fundraising – How To Do It Right
Fundraising with and for high school students is an entirely different experience than fundraising in primary schools. Parents play less of a role and the all-important ‘cool’ factor can be as elusive as a magical unicorn.
One thing high school students have in droves is passion. If students feel passionate about something, whether it is saving the pandas or refurbishing the school canteen, you will struggle to stop their enthusiasm.
Control is also top of the list. Its best to let the students make the final decision about how they will raise funds, and you will get a greater level of involvement.
Below are a few of the most popular ideas for fundraisers that will help get your students excited about participating.
Lunch Time Markets
Depending on the size of your school you can run a single market stall as a weekly occurrence, or have a bigger event with multiple stalls once every term.
Allocate the students one week where they are responsible for organising and manning the stall each term. This can be tied into any number of classes from maths, social sciences, economics and vocational trades.
The stalls can be the same each week, such as ice pops in summer and hot soup in winter, or something different each week.
Ultimately, what you sell is entirely up to you but here are a few of my favourites:
Delish Ice’s artisan ice pops come in a range of exotic flavours, and will be as popular with the teachers as the students.
With a tried and tested menu of adored flavours combined with a super cute retro cart set up, this is a fun and easy option.
To find out more information just pop on over to the Delish Ice fundraising page.
Large batches of pumpkin, chicken and noodle, minestrone or other favourite soups can be made and served in cups over the cold winter months.
You can get some fantastic soup ideas if you just do a quick search on Google. Websites such as Taste.com.au are a great place to start.
Gourmet Hot Chocolate
Hot chocolate is another winter favourite. You can offer a variety of flavours each week such as cinnamon, white chocolate or chilli.
Again, you can get some great hot chocolate recipes by doing a search on Google.
Themed nights can be in the form of a quiz night, bogan bingo or a casino style evening.
It’s common for these events to be limited to parents, but there is no reason why they can’t be opened up to students – just be mindful of selling alcohol.
You can sell tables to family groups, or have tables of adults and tables of students. A bit of friendly competition never hurt anyone, right?
For quiz nights, consider having alternate rounds of questions designed by students and adults working to a theme. For example a colour, where each answer must involve the word ‘black’ or ‘red’ in it. Or decades, where questions must revolve around events or trends from a particular decade in history.
Fundraising Mum’s has some great tips on how to run a quiz night.
Casino night fundraisers are also an exciting night out and can be run with either real cash or ‘funny money’. Attendees would need to be over 18 though, so this one’s strictly for the adults and Year 12 students.
Either way, casino nights give people an opportunity to dress up. Or you can choose from a number of themes such as James Bond or Vegas.
Customised teddy bears are a great fundraiser for Year 12 students to raise money for an end-of-year party or graduation dinner. These customisable bears are also a nice keepsake for students and families.
Students can choose to have their photos printed onto the teddy bears t-shirt. Or they can have artwork, sketches or simply the school logo to personalise each bear.
Graduation bears come with a cute black mortar board and scroll.
DIY Themed Cookbooks
A literacy based fundraiser, such as having the senior students write and publish their own recipe book, is not only fun but also provides a lasting (and practical) keepsake of their time at the school.
Themes for publishing your own school recipe book could be ‘easy recipes for poor uni students’, ‘party food and nibbles’; ‘entertaining on a budget’, or ‘how to boil an egg and other easy recipes’ – the possibilities are endless.
Frozen Cookie Dough
Running a frozen cookie dough fundraiser is lots of fun and an exercise in marketing and logistics – perfect for a group of senior students.
While the dough practically sells itself, distribution of hundreds of frozen tubs of dough can be challenging. The ‘pick-up’ could easily be integrated into another event or fundraiser.
Themed Fun Run
Not everything has to be about food, and any fundraiser that gets kids outdoors is always going to be well received.
By the time a student has finished high school they have probably participated in a dozen fun runs, so it is important to make a high school fun run something different and special.
Adding a wacky theme will help boost participation rates and you are only limited by your imagination. Try superheroes and villains, dress-like-a-teacher, what I want to be when I grow up, dress like your favourite food, a stiletto run, bad taste t-shirts, or bogans and businessmen.
An outdoor movie marathon can cater to all age groups.
Start the evening early with a G rated film for younger siblings and community members. Then as the night progresses movies can be chosen to suit older audiences.
You can hire inflatable movie screens for films under the stars or organise an indoor theatre in the school gym during winter, complete with beanbags and pillows.
A simple and effective fundraiser, selling scratch ’n’ help cards requires lots of people, with lots of motivation and little else.
Suited to older students who are willing to approach strangers, the donor simply scratches one or more circles from the card revealing an amount (from 50c to $3) they must donate. These cards would work well in conjunction with another event such as a school or community festival or market.
Want More Fundraising Ideas For High Schools?
This is a guest post from Shannon Meyerkort, aka Fundraising Mums, an online community dedicated to helping parents find new and interesting ways to raise money for schools and sports clubs (without losing their minds). Find her on Facebook or visit her blog Fundraising Mums for more hints and tips.
Need Some Ice Pops For Your Next High School Fundraiser?
Delish Ice are happy to help you with your next high school fundraiser. We supply ice pops at a discounted rate so you can make a profit. For more information just pop on over to our School Fundraising page. We hope to hear from you soon!