Fundraising For A Reason - Unique and Successful Fundraising Ideas | Health, Love & Fire

Fundraising For A Reason - Unique and Successful Fundraising Ideas

Friday, January 29, 2016

I've been a part of different fundraising events in some capacity for the last eight years from working for nonprofits to volunteering. We all have certain causes that are near and dear to our hearts. Volunteering and fundraising for local organizations has not only been such an amazing and touching experience, but I have also made some of my closest friends through those experiences. Win-Win! I've been lucky enough to have been on teams with friends where we've raised up to $18,000 for just one event. But we are always trying to come up with new and creative fundraising ideas to keep things interesting and get more people involved. Year after year it can get boring and difficult to come up with new ideas to raise money, so I decided to share some of my favorites.

Here are 25 ideas for awesome fundraisers that have been successful in events I've been a part of
1. Bake Sales
2. Team Garage Sale - Host this either at someone's home, ask a local business to use their parking lot, or attend a larger area wide garage sale with your team. One of our teams has attended a large garage sale hosted at the Portland Convention Center which saw TONS of traffic! Check in to these large scale sales in your area.
3. Coin Jars - Place these at people's workplaces, houses and local businesses with permission - that way any spare change people might have can be donated to your team.
4. Raffles - (Check your local raffle rules) We raffled off a Treager (smoker) BBQ that our team pitched in to purchase. We ended up making over $1,000 and sold tickets for $10 each.
5. Car Wash
6. Candy Sales - Places like See's Candy offer different fundraising programs where a percentage of your sales would go back to your team.
7. Pop Can Drive
8. Flock Someone's Lawn - get a flock of fake flamingos and have people pay to have them placed in friends and families' lawns
9. Egg Their Lawn - Have people pay to have Easter eggs put in their yards for their kids to find on Easter morning -  This was a huge hit and a great fundraiser for our team!
10. Bingo Party, Poker Party, or Bunko Party - Make sure to check your local lottery laws first, but a fun way to get your friends and family together and involved in your fundraising!
11. Car Show
12. Host a running event such as a 5k and charge an entry fee
13. Percentage Nights - Ask local restaurants to give back a percentage of their sales for a day or evening
14. Silent Auction
15. Dinner Dance - charge for tickets and provide food, music and dancing
16. Sell Something You Made - We sold homemade necklaces and made over $1,000
17. Face Painting at events
18. Car Crunch - Charge people to take a swing at an old car
19. Pie In The Face
20. Wine Pull - Ask everyone to bring a bottle of wine to your party and then charge people $5 to pick one of the wine's at random.
21. Christmas Tree sales - Partner with a local tree grower or lot and agree to help them publicize their sales if they will give a portion back to your team.
22. Parking Sales at local festivals - Offer to help sell and park cars for a local event or festival in exchange for a percentage going back to your event
23. Sell T-Shirts - Design and print your own shirts and sell them
24. Make Something and sell it - One year we made our own heart pendants for necklaces and sold them. Each one was personalized with beads of the buyers choosing and we made close to $1000
25. On site fundraisers - If your event happens all on one site, charge people to take photos at a photo booth, host a dunk tank, sell lap beads if it's a walking event, or sell different crafts. You have a captive audience at your event that is there for a reason, so try to get them involved in your fundraising!
I really have met some amazing people while fundraising and volunteering. Even now that I don't work for the same organizations, I still look forward to volunteering and fundraising each year for those same events. Every little bit helps when it comes to non-profits so don't think you can't contribute. Even if you're able to raise $100 it all helps the cause. What are some great fundraisers you've heard of or been a part of?


  1. This is a great list of fundraising events for non-profits! In the child-raising years I was the PTA president of both an elementary school and a middle school. Some of my favorite fundraisers were also some of the most successful in terms of raising money. Here were some of the best: Cookie Dough, May Festival, Halloween Carnival, Silent Auction, Crab Feed, Pancake Breakfast. When I was co-chairing big events I would have LOVED to have a seasoned volunteer like you!

  2. Such great ideas! I fundraise every year for the March of Dimes and The TTTS Foundation, so I'm always looking for new ideas. I'm going to have to try a few of these. Thank you!

  3. Great ideas, I am doing some fundraising in March and then in June for 2 charities close to my heart thanks for the ideas!

  4. These are great. I was just thinking about fundraising for my child's preschool since they need a new furnace. Thanks for posting this.

  5. Great ideas. When I ran a high school leadership club in St. Louis, Applebees used to let us come in and have a Pancake Breakfast. They would provide all the food supplies and cook for free. We could charge any amount we wanted per meal and then the kids were in charge of taking orders and waitressing. It was an awesome and easy to coordinate fundraiser. - Katy

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