50 Clever Fundraising Ideas for Schools and Clubs

fundraising ideas for school and clubs hidden school costs

With fundraising a necessity for most schools, clubs and charities, it can be difficult coming up with fresh ideas year on year. Well we’ve got you covered! From Bake Sales to Sponsored Silences, and everything in between, be inspired with our 50 Clever Fundraising Ideas for Schools and Clubs, and have some fun to as you raise funds for your school or clubs’ coffers.

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#1. Breakfast Event

This is best done in collaboration with a local hotel or restaurant. Get a set price for breakfast items and charge for people to attend the event. This type of event is a great time for giving awards or certificates to pupils or club members.

#2. Bake Sale

The annual bake sale is a tried and a tested fundraising idea for schools and clubs. Parents, staff and pupils can donate home-baking items and these are sold to pupils, friends and family.

Recommended Reading: 50 of the Best Bake Sale Ideas

#3. Bag Pack

Fundraising Ideas Bag Packing

This is a great fundraising idea for older children or parents to undertake. For insurance purposes, many supermarkets will only allow children aged 14 yrs+ to take part. Weekends fill up quickly, so you will need to apply early to be in with a chance of getting a suitable day at your local store.

Be sure to sign up early in the school year for a bag pack as slots fill up very quickly.

#4. Church Gate Collection

Your local church will generally allow 1 group to collect at all services on a particular weekend. Make sure to have people collecting at all exits or entrances with proper collection buckets and clear signage.

If children are helping, ensure there is an adult collecting alongside each group and that the children (and adults) know what they are collecting for when people ask. ie. a new school hall or pitch, computers etc.

Ensure you have the correct permits in place for any bucket collections.

#5. Table Quiz

I have been to several table quizzes over the years and I think the best ones are when you get the kids involved and allow them to take part.

Charge per team and have a good mix of questions. You could have a round about your city or county, one on music, one on your school or club, general knowledge, Dingbats, Sports, Flags, missing words, nature and a photo round.

Have spot prizes for the best answers, best team name and an overall prize for 1st, 2nd and 3rd teams.

#6. Race Day/Night

Fundraising Ideas Race Night

A night at the dogs or a day at the horses or to see a local sports team is a fun way of fundraising for your school or club. Check with your local track, sports ground and see what fundraising ideas they have on offer.

#7. Raffle

A raffle is often held in conjunction with a bake sale/yard sale or other fundraising event. Ask for donations from parents and local businesses and price your tickets according to the range of prizes on offer.

#8. Silent Auction

If you are lucky enough to have received some valuable items for a raffle it may be worth considering running a silent auction for those items. People simply add their details, along with a bid to either an envelope or on a sheet outlining the prize. The highest bidder wins and must pay their bid price to receive their prize.

#9. Treasure Hunt

Fundraising Ideas Treasure Hunt

A small or larger scale treasure hunt is a fun event for families along with being a great fundraising idea. You can hide items to be found at your school or venue or create clues from items in your locality ie. poems or inscriptions on plaques, shop or street names etc. Each clue leads you to the next location and you either take the first letter of each place to solve a riddle or pick up treasure at the final location.

It does take a bit of organisation but you may find out things about your locality that you didn’t know before too.

Recommended Reading: Setting up a Treasure Hunt

#10. Sponsored Event

From a dance-a-thon to a skip-a-thon get everybody active and having fun while fundraising. Each child tries to get sponsorship to take part.

#11. School Yard Sale

Fundraising Ideas Yard Sale

Another popular fundraising idea where families donate their unwanted items and these are sold on the day. Often combined with a bake sale and other fun fundraising ideas such as nail painting, fortune telling, hook a duck etc.

#12. Duck the Teacher/Leader

One of the Dads at our school created a life sized clown board with a hole for your head. Our brave teachers let pupils throw wet sponges at them for a small fee!

#13. Calendars/Wall Planners

We all need calendars and wall planners to track family activities. Schools can team up with companies who create these to fundraise.

#14. Christmas Cards

Fundraising Ideas Christmas Cards

My girls produce individual designs for Christmas Cards, Tags and Wrapping paper each October/November. Parents can order as many as they wish and the school gets a share of the fund raised.

#15. School Hoodies

If you have a school team why not work with a company to produce a school team hoodie that children can purchase.

Our gymnastics and swim club sell t-shirts on event days, that have the name of each child on the back, first names only, and parents will almost always be pestered into purchasing them as a memento of the day!

#16. Fashion Show

I have worked on 3 Fashion Shows for school and the local GAA Club. They take a lot of organisation, but if you have a good team in place, can be a great fundraiser and feel-good event. On the night there is also an opportunity to have a raffle, silent auction or heads and tails game.

#17. Trash to Treasure Event

fundraising ideas clothing sale

Rather than a fashion show, parents donate their unwanted, clothes, bags, shoes and accessories for adults and kids. Items are arranged as they would be in a shop, so grouped by item type, size or price. So everything on a certain rail or table cost x.

Ensure you have a dressing room so that people can try before they buy!

#18. Strictly Come Dancing Event

This has become a popular fundraiser for schools and clubs. Parents are sponsored to take part in a dance routine that is then judged with the best dancers going through to the grand final. During the event you could have a bake sale, raffle, game of heads or tails or a silent auction.

#19. Who Wants to be a Thousandaire Event

Usually arranged thorough a company that charges a fee and anything made above the fee is profit for the school/club. A great evening out for the whole family.

#20. Non Uniform Day

Fundraising Ideas Non Uniform Day

Our school runs a few of these annually as charity fundraisers but they could be used to fundraise for the school or club too. Each child brings a set amount on the non-uniform day, so a great way to fundraise if you have a particular target in mind.

#21. Sponsored Silence

Ah the bliss of silence! The annual sponsored silence is usually held as a charity fundraiser but could be done as a school/club fundraiser too.

#22. Heads or Tails

This is a great fundraising game that can be played at events where you have a large crowd. It runs off very quickly and is a bit of fun for guest too.

  • Everyone puts a set amount into an envelope.
  • Then either puts their hands on their heads or their tails (bum).
  • A coin is tossed and depending on whether it lands on heads or tails the people with their hands on the correct body part remain standing, the rest sit down.
  • Continue until there are only 15 to 20 people left.
  • Get them to move to the stage or the centre of the room.
  • Whittle it down to 2 until you get a winner.

#23. Junior Entrepreneur Event

Many schools run a junior entrepreneur event. The children come up with an idea and apply for a loan from the school to turn it into reality. Once produced, they sell the products to friends, family and classmates.The loan is repaid and profits made can be used to purchase equipment or for a class trip etc.

Great ideas I have seen are: Magic Reindeer Food, Jumbleberry Jam, Knitted items etc.

This fundraising idea really benefits the kids as they must cost up their idea, put together a marketing and sales plan and look after the accounts. All great life lessons.

#24. Recycling

Fundraising Ideas Recycling

Everything from old mobile phones to batteries can be used to fundraise for schools and clubs while also helping charities.

#25. Photos/DVD’s

School photos and DVD’s of special events are great fundraising ideas. The school earns money and the families get to remember special moments in their child’s life.

Remember permission is needed from parents before recordings or photos can be taken.

#26. Book Fair

Our school holds an annual book fair. Depending on how many books are sold, the school will get ‘paid’ in books for the school library.

Or you could have your own book fair, where families donate schoolbooks and regular books that other children can purchase.

#27. Teaming up with Local Charities

Fundraising Ideas Tough Mudder Mini Mudder competition

Charities understand the power of community and more and more are working with schools, clubs and groups to fundraise for themselves and share a % of the money raised with the group.

These include Tough Mudder and Mini Mudder, Lions Club 5K walks.

#28. Yearbook

We always had a yearbook where class photos were added along with articles, poems and artwork from students. They are a fun memento of my time in school and are a great way for schools to fundraise.

#29. School Diary

Most children will use a homework diary. School or clubs can team up with specialist companies to produce a unique school/club diary with special events already noted and sell these onto pupils/members.

#30. Cash for Clobber

Fundraising Ideas Cash for Clobber

There are a myriad of companies who will collect unwanted clothing and pay the school/club a set amount for each bag. In turn the bags are used to support charities. Do your research before choosing a company to work with.

#31. School Cookbook

Students and staff submit their all time family favourite recipes, along with a photo and this is turned into a cookbook.

#32. Hiring out Hall or Pitches

If your insurance covers it, the school or club could hire out their sports hall or pitches to other organisations for a fee when it is not being used by students.

#33. Play/Talent Show

Charge a small fee to families to attend the annual play or talent show. And sell raffle tickets, have a heads and tails game or a silent auction on the night.

#34. Sponsored Run/Swim /Cycle

Fundraising Ideas Sponsored Swim

People are now more aware than ever of the importance of exercise. Have a fun fundraiser by getting the students, teachers/leader, or families to get sponsorship to take part in a run, swim, cycle or other endurance event.

#35. Cinema Outing or Film in School Hall

When I was young (many moons ago), our school used to show a film once a month and we all paid a small amount to attend. It was great fun coming to school on a non-school day and meeting our friends.

You could show some old classics that many children may not have seen already. And a tuck shop is obligatory!

Or you could team up with your local cinema to get a special rate for families to attend a new release.

#36. Bingo Night

Organise a fun bingo night for families. You can purchase special books and have a parent or teacher be the caller for the night.

#37. Car Boot Sale

If your school or club has a large playing field, yard or car park, you could organise a car boot sale. Each car pays a set amount to be allocated a place where they can sell their goods.

#38. Duck Race

Fundraising Ideas Duck Race

There is a bit of organising with this one but it’s always a guaranteed fund do out for all the family. Firstly get your permits in place. Then ask people to ‘buy’ a duck or a number. The numbered rubber ducks are released into a river, lake or canal and they race to a finish line.

You will need to have nets in place to catch them at the end!

#39. Power of Change

We all have loose change in our pockets, wallets and bags. Each child creates a change jar and family members put their loose change into the jar until it is full and then returns it to the school/club.

#40. Pet Show

Not for the feint hearted, you could organise a pet show where pupils bring their pets along. You could charge a small entrance fee and run some fun events during the day.

#41. Sporting challenge

Fundraising Ideas Sponsored Event

Students, staff and parents take part in a sporting challenge such as an erg session on a rowing machine or exercise bike marathon. It could be run over a set time period with everyone doing a particular time slot or a few people could take it on as an endurance event.

#42. Golf Am Am

Talk to your local golf club about the possibility of organising a Golf Am Am fundraising event. Players pay a fee to play and can either enter a team or be paired on the day and local businesses can be asked to sponsor holes or fun happenings from the day. ie. hole in one, most shots to hole, best or worst dressed etc.

#43. Games Day or Evening

Organise a fun games day or evening for students / members. It could be a board games day, lego building day, jigsaw day or you could hire giant games like jenga or connect 4. Everyone pays a small fee to take part.

#44. Lottery

Many clubs use specialist companies to run an ongoing lottery as a fundraiser. People can sign up by direct debit or can pay weekly/monthly to be included. The school or club gets a percentage of the profit.

#45. Read-a-thon

Fundraising Ideas Readathon

Educational and fun. Children get sponsored to read as many books as possible in a set amount of time.

#46. Teddy Bear’s Picnic

Run a fun teddy bear’s picnic and charge a small amount for teddies to attend. You could run this in conjunction with a bake sale or get everyone to bring their own picnic and have some treats available to the teddy bears.

#47. Concert

If your school or club have talented musicians or an amazing choir, run a concert for friends and family to attend and charge a small fee.

#48. Skills Auction

Fundraising Ideas Skills Auction

Parents, staff and students offer a skill that can be auctioned. From gardening to painting, computer knowledge to knitting skills, you give up a couple of hours of your time to another student, parent or staff member that can be auctioned to the highest bidder.

#49. Wristbands

Team up with  a specialist company to create a unique writstband for your school or club that can be sold to raise funds.

#50. Seasonal Events

Take advantage of seasonal events to come up with clever fundraising ideas that will be fun for families and foster a good community spirit too.

Some ideas to get your started include: Easter Egg Hunt, Halloween Dress up or Party, Sports Day get some of the races sponsored, Snowman Building Competition, Valentines Day Cards or treats or a school disco for end of term.

50 Clever Fundraising Ideas for Schools & Clubs

Over to you! Have you any other clever fundraising ideas we have not mentioned? Please share them in the comments box below. 

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