Easy school fundraising ideas?

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Schools often need extra money and sell various items, but car washes, bake sales, student auctions, spirit cards, and computer repair fairs are easy and profitable fundraising ideas that involve parents and the community. Specifying how the money will be spent increases funds and integrity.

Schools, public or private, seem to be in constant need of extra money. Children are often sent home with brochures selling bells and books and candles and popcorn and candy and stuffed animals and calendars. It seems to be an endless parade of things to sell. If parents don’t want their kids running around the neighborhood and feel weird putting the pinch on coworkers, how can kids and parents help with school fundraising?

One of the simplest school fundraising ideas is a car wash. Held in warm weather, these are usually popular and easy and have a high profit margin. Parents and children can bring buckets, rags, soap and hoses from home. Many businesses, such as banks, allow schools and youth groups to have car washes and use their own water supply, either for free or for a nominal fee.

The investment for supplies is usually small, and kids of all ages can do something at a car wash. They can clean windshields, scrub tires, or hose down vehicles. Cleaning is also easy, since the parking lot only needs to be sprayed and all cleaning products taken away.

Another good school fundraiser idea is a bake sale. This is an easy idea, since parents can bake or purchase items for sale and can set their own prices based on how much they’ve invested in it. A variation on this school fundraising idea is a “no-bake bake sale.” Participants are asked to calculate how much money they would typically spend on baking ingredients or store-bought items, or how much they would be willing to pay for a baked product, and donate that amount in cash to the school. The upside is that busy parents don’t have to cook anything, and everything the school gets is pure profit. Participants can receive small paper cupcakes marked “Thank you from XXXX School” as acknowledgment of their donation.

Easy school fundraising can also be done through a “student auction”. This is usually best for small schools or a single class where the parents know all the other parents. It’s a good fundraiser for middle and high school students. The students get up and the parents bid on the student’s services for a particular job, such as mowing the lawn, painting shutters, doing laundry, or other odd jobs. However, this particular event should be approved with the parents of all participating students.

Spirit cards are another idea for school fundraisers. Some businesses contact companies to advertise on credit card-sized cards, with discounts for food or services. Cards are sold for a fixed fee and are more popular than merchandise, as they are discounts that people actually use.
A computer repair fair is another easy way to raise money for the school, especially for high school students. Many people don’t know how to fix their own computers, but many students are skilled enough to do basic repairs. Customers can bring their computers to school for repair or make an appointment for a student/parent or student/teacher team to come to their home. Clients may be charged a flat fee and most of the profit goes to the school.

School fundraising can be done with a little imagination and cooperation from parents and the community. They like to see their money at work, so the school should always specify how the money will be spent. This raises more funds and helps ensure the integrity of the process.

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