List of Fundraising Ideas

Mary Gormandy White
Charity Gala
Raise money with a charity gala!

If you're responsible for raising money for a nonprofit organization, it's important to come up with a comprehensive list of fundraising ideas that can help you accomplish your goals. This list can give you ideas to choose from as well as help you reach your fundraising goals.

Choosing from a List of Fundraising Ideas

When you're engaged in ongoing fundraising efforts for an organization, it's essential to vary the types of campaigns you utilize, so that you don't find yourself in the position of going back to the same individuals asking for money time and time again.

Your list of fundraising ideas should include several types of projects, so that you are able to appeal to a diverse group of potential supporters. It's much better to alternate among different types of fundraisers, so that you can reach out to different volunteers and donors regularly.

Special Event Fundraising Ideas

Many organizations find that special events provide excellent opportunities to raise money. The type of event that will work best for you depends on a variety of factors, including where you are located, the time of year, and who you are trying to reach. Make sure that the price range of the event you are planning is appropriate for the income level of the population you are targeting. Before scheduling a special event, be sure that you find out what other activities are going on in your city when choosing a date. Verify that you aren't scheduling your event at a time when there are several other activities in the same area that will appeal to the same people you are counting on being able to attract to yours.

Examples of special event fundraisers include:

  • Bachelor/bachelorette auction
  • Casino night
  • Classic car show
  • Conference
  • Draw down
  • Gala dinner dance
  • Golf tournament
  • Food sales (fish fry, barbecue dinners, etc.)
  • Raffle
  • Rummage sale
  • Silent auction
  • Walk/Run events

Contest Fundraisers

Contests can be an excellent fundraising idea, especially for organizations that are trying to attract supporters who can't make large financial commitments or who have certain types of skills. Both entry fees and sponsorship sales allow money to be made using these types of fundraisers.

Contest fundraiser ideas you may want to try include:

  • Art competition
  • Bingo
  • Costume contests
  • Photography contest
  • Races
  • Talent show

Logo Merchandise Fundraisers

People who are supportive of your organization may very well be interested in owning and using items with your logo on them. You can sell these items, or use them as thank you gifts for individuals or organizations that make donations to your capital campaign or other fundraising campaign.

Examples of logo merchandise fundraisers include:

  • Baseball cap
  • Beach towel
  • Golf towel
  • Holiday ornaments
  • Laptop case
  • Polo shirt
  • T-shirts
  • Tote bag
  • Sweatshirt
  • Visor

Product Resale Fundraisers

Many companies that produce consumer goods have special fundraising programs for nonprofit organizations. The key to success with a product sale fundraiser is to select an item, or group of items, that appeal to consumers, are reasonably priced, and are of high quality.

A few ideas for product resale fundraisers include:

  • Candles
  • Cookies
  • Doughnuts
  • Greeting cards
  • Magazine subscriptions
  • Soft drinks
  • Popcorn
  • Wrapping paper

Do-it-Yourself Fundraisers

Nonprofit organizations often find do-it-yourself fundraisers to be very lucrative, as well as enjoyable. It can be very rewarding to create products to market or to offer services to supporters as a means of raising money.

Ideas for do-it-yourself fundraisers include:

  • Bake sale
  • Cookbooks
  • Car wash
  • Lunch take-out or delivery
  • Yard work

Creating a Fundraising Plan

If your organization's ability to offer services is dependent on ongoing fundraising efforts, it's important to create a fundraising plan that includes several types of projects designed to help you raise money. It's advisable to put your plan in place a year in advance, so you have time to organize committees, get chair people in place, and properly plan to make each event a great success.

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List of Fundraising Ideas