A big part of being a hands-on mom involves being a part of your little one’s school life, from kindergarten to high-school graduation. This can include everything from making sure homework is done to liaising with teachers to participating in school fundraising.
Helping to raise funds for your child’s school is a generous and worthwhile endeavor, but it can also seem daunting to those new to fundraising. To help, we’ve put together a list of four simple steps to a successful school fundraiser.
- Set Clear Goals
As you can see from these tips on school fundraisers from ABC Fundraising, planning is key. By setting concrete goals before you start the fundraising process, you’ll be better able to communicate your ideas to parents and school officials.
A good goal should be S.M.A.R.T – specific, measurable, actionable, relevant and timed. Consider the vague goal of “we want to raise money for the school.” It doesn’t explain how you’re going to achieve this or why. Instead, try something more explicit, like “we want to raise $5,000 for school library repairs by selling candy bars throughout February.” The clearer it is in your mind, the easier it’ll be to explain to participants.
- Choose an Appropriate Fundraiser
When you’re choosing a fundraising event, make sure it lines up with the values of your child’s school. For example, if one of the school’s key values is humanitarianism, you may want to consider selling only fair-trade goods and giving a percentage of the funds raised to a charity.
Also, make sure the fundraiser is realistic. A school disco featuring a smoke machine and a DJ might sound great, but the cost of setting up could eat heavily into your profits. Simple and economical doesn’t have to be boring — get together with other parents and kids to brainstorm ideas.
- Get the Kids Involved
The best fundraisers aren’t the ones that involve you baking 10 trays of cookies all by yourself the night before the bake sale. Successful fundraisers motivate the students and teach them new skills. The more enthusiastic the students are, the more motivated their parents will be to participate. Children of all ages can play a part in your fundraiser, from creating signs to organizing stalls. For older kids, supervised activities like selling chocolate or running a lemonade stand can be a great way to teach vital skills, like money-handling and concise communication.
- Promote the Event
A huge part of running a successful fundraising event is the promotion. These days, it’s never been easier to spread your message throughout the school district and community. Start traditionally by sending notes home with students and posting fliers on local notice boards. Then increase your promotional reach by making a Facebook event and encouraging others to share your updates on social media.
Being in charge of a school fundraiser seems like a huge undertaking, especially if you’ve never done it before. But by planning ahead, involving your children and setting clear and concise goals, you’ll be able to throw a memorable fundraiser that the whole school will love.