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LS Blog 10 Smart Fundraising Ideas to Make Money Fast

As a school principal, you are the leader who sets the tone for most fundraising events. People look to you for guidance for school fundraising campaigns. Use smart school fundraising ideas to help you raise money fast.

10 smart school fundraising ideas to help you raise money fast

  1. Rally for support. After the fundraising schedule is set for the year, the next task is for the school principal to rally the troops. Make the students, teachers, and parents excited about the fundraiser. Most schools do this through PTA/PTO groups. Many principals stage a kick-off rally at the start of a fundraiser to build enthusiasm throughout the school community. Some principals take the matter to another level by offering to do some crazy things to thrill their students, like kissing a pig or trimming off their hair after reaching their fundraising goal.
  1. School Picnic as a fundraiserSchool picnics. School picnics are a good idea for school fundraising, especially on warmer days. Use picnic fundraisers to raise money while encouraging involvement in outdoor activities. To plan a picnic fundraiser, you need to select a park or other safe outdoor area, design announcements, set a participation fee, and have foods and drinks donated. Besides food and beverages, you can arrange a raffle or other supplemental fundraising activities to raise even more funds.
  1. Christmas carol singing. We all love the holidays and Christmas carols really get us in the spirit. Why not take this time honored tradition and make it a way to support your school? Christmas carolers are hard to resist, especially kids. Use Christmas carol singing to raise money from people in neighborhoods surrounding your school. To perform well, practice for the Christmas carols and plan the event for a week or two before Christmas. And if all that practice doesn’t help and you still can’t carry a tune, don’t let that discourage you. Then people can donate to get you to STOP singing instead!
  1. The spelling bee idea. This idea works well for fundraising from parents and guardians with children in elementary school. Most spelling bees will require children to compete as individuals. Here, every child is asked to spell a different word, and their answers are called out or recorded on a board. Fundraise for your school by selling tickets to the spelling bees or let them donate for a “second chance” at a missed word. This type of activity would also work for a geography bee, science Olympiad or math contest.
  1. The family fun day idea. Organize a family fun day once every month or several times per year based on your school’s resources. Organize the family fun day on Saturday so that many parents and middle school children can attend. Ensure that the family fun day is educational and fun to the attendees. Have parents, guardians, staff members, alumni, and some children volunteer in some activities like face painting, clay sculpting, sports activities, and entertainment. Ensure that every person who attends the family fun day donates to your fundraising campaigns.
  1. Walking to school (Walk-a-Thon). Use this fundraising idea for schools with high school students. Based on where your school is situated and how your students get to school each morning, this can be a great source of money for fundraising. Here, you need to organize a week where high school students can arrive at school on foot, not by car. Ask these students to donate all the money they saved by not using any other transportation means to reach school.
    Car wash as a school fundraiser
  1. Fundraising car wash idea. A fundraising car wash is easy and fun to organize. It is a great way to raise funds. First, decide where the car wash will take place. Your choice of venue should depend on whether you plan to target passers-by or wash the cars of individuals prepared to come to the site. Easy access to a water supply is essential when choosing a venue for your car wash. To attract more people to the car wash, you need to advertise for this car wash with the help of posters, flyers, local media, word of mouth, pre-selling vouchers for the car wash in advance of the car wash day, among others. Make sure everyone knows what the car wash will benefit. Have your staff and high school students volunteer to wash the cars of parents and well-wishers in exchange for a donation.
  1. The sponsorship letter idea. Suppose your school wants to request sponsorship from businesses. In that case, a sponsorship letter is an excellent way to explain your fundraising program or event while also explaining how this partnership will benefit both parties. With a sponsorship letter, your school gains financial support while the sponsors get the chance to earn some kind of recognition or incentive. When requesting individual sponsorships, reach out to them emotionally and inform them how their contribution will impact your school.
  1. Host multi-cultural events. Host a multi-cultural school event for students to share the richness of their cultures with others. At such events, students can share their meals, sweets, dances, and other traditions. Even though it takes some effort to organize such an event, it is a good fundraising idea. You can invite members from a broad community and school alumni and charge a fee for entering the multi-cultural event.
  1. Sometimes the best Fundraiser is no Fundraiser at all. Many schools have had great success organizing a fundraiser around not having to fundraise! How does it work? Give families the option to give a set amount and they can opt out of all fundraising activities for the year. You will be surprised how many families will participate. You can raise a whole bunch of money fast and with very little effort.


Use the fundraising ideas above as an inspiration to set up your fundraising program and raise money fast. The LeanStream platform can accommodate all kinds of ideas and gives folks a way to give online. Find out more here.