Top 37 Unique Back to School Fundraising Ideas

For most academics, having a well-thought-out and well-implemented fundraising strategy could be extremely beneficial. Well, amongst all other types of fundraising campaigns, back-to-school fundraising ideas are not something that schools should underestimate. These can help schools maintain academic standards, offer new programs and scholarships, complete major projects, or help other non-profits to fulfill their cause.

If you are finding it difficult to think about which back-to-school fundraising ideas to plan and implement, you are at the right place. In this blog, we have listed 37 awesome and unique back-to-school fundraising ideas that are very easy to plan and arrange.

Stay tuned and keep reading.

What Is A Back To School Fundraiser?

Before understanding the Back To School Fundraising, let’s dive deep into understanding a fundraiser first.

A fundraiser, also known as a Fundraising Event, is an event intended to increase awareness and support for a nonprofit objective. Any occasion may be used to collect money by turning it into a fundraising event. This can encompass events like Bake Sale, Talent Show, Lollipop Stand, Popcorn and Peanuts Fundraiser, Virtual Concert, school picnic, etc.

Now, a Back To School Fundraiser is an event where the campaigns are launched when students return to school during the fall season. These fundraising programs are planned and hosted by school staff and student volunteers together using easily available supplies to raise money.

What Are The Advantages Of A Back To School Fundraiser?

A Back To School Fundraiser is essentially important as it ensures that the teens and kids get benefits from the added financial resources and enriching programs. In addition, fundraising campaigns like these help other non-profit organizations to make money for their specific developmental causes.

Here is a list of advantages that a Back To School Fundraising can provide:

1. Raises Money Easily

Back To School Fundraising ideas are simple enough to host. There is no need to invest huge resources or time. If planned correctly, these programs can help you reach your fund target easily.

2. Helps Students Learn Life Skills

Asking for contributions or selling goods teaches children and teenagers how to think critically and communicate with people in a kind manner. This also emphasizes the value of meeting deadlines and achieving objectives.

3. Strengthens Cognitive Abilities

Since in school fundraisers, students are involved in every activity, it fosters a good psychological development of cognitive skills.

4. Creates A Sense Of Community

Volunteering and fundraising inculcate a sense of belonging both inside the organization or group and within the larger civic community.

Is Determining The Best Back To School Fundraising Idea Difficult?

It’s true that with so many options, you may face confusion while determining which fundraising idea would be the best for your school. However, determining the most promising one for your cause won’t be difficult if you follow these three steps:

1. Analyze The Cause And The Goal

At first assess the cause behind your fundraising as well as the goal to determine which campaign will be the best fit.

2. Segment Your Audiences

Once you have evaluated your cause, identify which audience group/groups you want to target for raising funds. You can do it by reviewing the themes of different fundraising plans.

3. Fix The Timeline

Set an achievable timeline for your fundraiser and see which idea can help you accomplish the target within that timeframe.

Top 37 Back To School Fundraising Ideas

While the fall season is approaching, it’s advantageous for the schools and non-profits as students will be returning to school. Your organization will have the opportunity to engage supporters in new ways as a result of this. With these 37 Back To School fundraising ideas, you can broaden your audience and increase donations throughout the fall season.

1. Bake Sale

It doesn’t take much to make baked goods – just some flour, sugar, egg, butter, vanilla essence, baking soda, and milk. Schools can easily afford these items and host a Bake Sale back to school fundraising. While the fall season is just around the corner, people will love to try baked items. Usually, the schools don’t have to pay for the supplies as most of the parents will happily donate the ingredients to the school for preparing the items. A bake sale will be more fun if students together take the responsibility of making and selling them. Make sure to set a reasonable price for the items to draw the attention of customers.

2. Parent’s Night Out

Just like students, parents also need a break from their everyday hustles. However, while raising the kids and handling their own professional life together, it becomes impossible for parents to take out enough time for themselves. Hiring a babysitter is also costly, which most parents can’t afford. A parent’s night out will be a brilliant escapade idea for them. Schools can help parents in this regard with a babysitting offer where they can drop off their pre-primary and primary kids at the school for some hours for a small fee. Teachers and other staff will keep the children entertained by letting them watch cartoons, play games, or do art projects.

3. Candle Fundraising

Since the holidays are coming up, scented candles are something that people will purchase more. Lighting hand-picked, scented candles at home or church create a peaceful aura. So why don’t you host a candle fundraising program? Involve the student volunteers to pack the candles and give them the responsibility to sell those outside the community hall, park, or church for a minimum amount. The biggest advantage of fundraising events like this is the required fund can be raised pretty quickly.

4. Talent Show

Every kid is uniquely talented – some love to dance, while some are interested in painting. On the other hand, some children love to write poems or sing. Organizing a fundraiser where they will get an opportunity to show their talents is a brilliant option to raise money for the cause. Also, when it’s a kids’ show, people will love to see it. To raise the money the school can charge for tickets to watch the show. It’s a fantastic idea to reach your back to school fundraising target.

5. Penny Drive

A penny drive is a super easy way to collect some quick cash for a non-profit cause or an organization. Almost everybody has a few pennies that are never planned to use. If the school hosts a penny drive, it will come to good use. The students and parents will donate pennies as a part of the fundraising program to the school. The more people are involved, the higher amount will be collected. The school can add some fun to this fundraiser by arranging free refreshments for the parents and the students.

6. Magazine Subscriptions

Buying magazines at the newsstand or the store every day is tiring, and the best alternative here is a magazine subscription plan. What about using this idea for fundraising? Well, schools can sell magazine subscriptions to the most popular periodicals for a nominal fee. On the one hand, it will help the customers save a lot of money, while on the other, it will enable the school to raise the necessary amount as a magazine subscription fundraiser will draw huge attention. So, it’s a win-win situation for both!

7. Sell custom Pajamas

Pajamas or PJs have always been in trend, and they are loved by people of all age groups who can ignore their comfort. Plus, if students themselves organize this fundraiser, it will be more innovative. Order some basic tees and PJs and give them to the students who will draw, paint or color-spray on them according to specific themes – VOILA, custom Pajamas are ready! Students will sell their creations on the fundraising day and take the donations to raise funds.

8. Sleepover Night

With a group of student volunteers, plan for a school sleepover fundraiser in the school dorm area. Generate a list of what every student needs to bring as well as the entertainment activities that will be conducted to engage the students. It’s a must to provide dinner, breakfast, and snacks to them and keep emergency medications handy. To raise the fund, charge a particular amount as the entry fee for each student to take part in the sleepover night.

9. Fast Food Stand

Who doesn’t love some lip-smacking fast foods? They are liked by everybody, especially kids and young adults, for both taste and cost-effectiveness. Therefore, a fast-food stand could be an awesome idea to host a successful back to school fundraising campaign. Look for a local business that can discount or donate foods such as chips, hot dogs, Tacos, Pizza, burgers, Onion Rings, Fried Chicken, Loaded sandwiches, Pasta, Noodles, Smoothies, coke, etc. Do you think people will be able to ignore a meal for $5? Guess what, it will be a blasting success.

10. Popcorn And Peanuts Fundraising

The holiday season is about to arrive and nothing can beat the taste of fresh popcorn and spicy peanuts during this time. Gather some student volunteers, and they will take the lead in selling flavored popcorn and peanuts in the most commonly visited public places to raise funds. This popcorn and peanuts fundraising idea will receive huge engagement from the customers, particularly from children.

11. Logo Design Contest Fundraiser

Challenge school students’ parents and community to design a new logo of the school to print on the tees and sell them. Create a competitive vibe to add a thrill among the participants by announcing prizes for the first 3 best designers. The winning design will be printed on the tees, which later on will be sold by the students only to raise the fund amount. When it comes to fundraising ideas for small schools or big fundraising ideas for schools, a logo design contest supported by a t-shirt fundraiser can fulfill the objectives.

12. Art Exhibition

It’s one of the best high school fundraising that can raise money and showcase the talent of the students at the same time. Organize a display of student artwork in the form of a “pop-up art gallery.” The school’s supporters or attendees may “bid” on the artwork, and the school may donate a portion of the sales revenue to a nearby non-profit or civic organization.

13. Cookie Dough Fundraising

The fall season is incomplete without the scent of freshly baked cookies. A cookie dough fundraising is one of the most amazing back to school fundraiser ideas since it will bring a huge flow of customers/donors. Additionally, if students collect the ingredients, make them, and sell them, it will add a very endearing personal touch to the entire fundraiser. All you need to do is charge a small amount for each cookie or cookie pack to reach the fund target.

14. Community Clean-Up

Who wouldn’t be interested in doing something that helps the environment while still making money? The best fundraising programs for schools, such as a Big Community Cleanup, can serve both purposes. Parents, former pupils, and residents promise to help the youngsters with the clean-up. The school will be able to raise more money with the aid of these school fundraisers, which have strong community support.

15. Cosplay

This creative school fundraising strategy is adaptable apart from being enjoyable. Encourage children to dress up as their favorite characters from literature, movies, or TV shows, and of course, pay for their participation in the cosplay contest. This fundraising concept is not only a fantastic way to involve kids, but it is also an innovative way to strengthen their creative thinking abilities.

16. Read-a-Thon

Given that it motivates kids to read for enjoyment, this school fundraising concept may be a favorite of your instructors and parents. Students document the hours they spend reading after getting targets from parents, family members, or teachers for how many pages or volumes they can finish. What the school has to do is charge a small fee from the parents to make their children eligible to take part in this Read-a-Thon. It’s a relatively simple method to earn money for your school, hence one of the top fundraisers for schools.

17. Lollipop Fundraising

Give your fundraising a sweet twist by hosting a Lollipop fundraiser. It’s one of the result-driven back to school fundraising ideas that is also student and kid-friendly. With a lollipop stand, it’s possible to make the targeted money easily since lollipops are high-demanded fundraising products and can involve kids easily. Furthermore, if school students take the responsibility of selling the lollipops, it would be a huge success.

18. Trivia Competition

Tired of brainstorming the same old back to school fundraising ideas? Here is the best solution for you. Create some entertaining yet difficult trivia questions, either regarding your school and its past or about general knowledge. Set a date for the tournament and send out invitations to those with connections to the institution. You may either charge a small admission fee, offer food and drinks, or do both to make money. Make sure you choose a superb quizmaster, quality questions, and an acceptable time limit.

19. Balloon Pop Party

A balloon pop party sounds quite interesting while talking about the best back to school fundraising ideas. Start with buying 100 helium-filled balloons, put money inside, and sell them for $10 per piece. Though it won’t raise hundreds of dollars for you, this concept is excellent for a small fundraising campaign. To make more money and bring the best results, you can add other good school fundraisers such as Cookie Dough Selling, Easter Egg Hunt, Lollipop Fundraiser, etc.

20. Candy Bar Fundraising

Candy Bar Fundraising is one of the most high-profit fundraisers for schools. So why not sell them for a good cause? Spend less; sell more through this easy moneymaking campaign. Buy flavored candies and let the students sell them. A student standing with a candy bar stand will gain more attention leading to bringing in huge money.

21. Rock, Paper, Scissors Tournament

The competition should include a nominal entry price for students. Start the Rock, Paper, Scissor tournament by matching them up! The winner is determined by taking the best 2 out of the 3 games; following that, the winners play again against each other. Continue until there are just a few players remaining. Have a $5 buy-in to rejoin the game after that. The champion will be awarded a reward. Which classroom fundraising ideas will be easier than this?

22. Easter Egg Hunt Fundraiser

This potential moneymaking concept is simple to put together and is a field day crowd-pleaser apart from being one of the successful fundraisers for schools. Have the students search the school for hidden candies and other treats put inside colorful Easter eggs. Either alone or in teams, children can compete. The pupil/team who unearths the most secret delights wins! An Easter Egg Hunt Fundraiser is so flexible that you can easily combine other events with it to increase the community grants, such as – a car wash, obstacle course, shoe drive fundraiser, etc.

23. Family Fun Day In School

You can plan a family fun day once a month or several times a school year, depending on your capability. It should be on a Saturday so that parents and students may both attend. Make the event entertaining as well as instructive. Volunteer the time of some parents, graduates, and staff members. Face painting, gardening, or clay sculpting are just a few of the various activities you might plan. Incorporate a participation fee.

24. Walk-a-thon

Organizing a walk-a-thon for students is a fantastic method to generate money. It’s a top priority in the list of the best school fundraisers. Set aside a week when children would walk, not drive, to school. Get the pupils to give all the money they saved by not driving to school. Additionally, you may let each high school student take part in the walkathon to launch their fundraising campaign.

25. Recycling Drive

Cheap fundraisers for schools such as Recycling Drive are a splendid idea where minimum effort is involved. Encourage your pupils to bring used cell phones, clothing, or cartridges to class. Tie up with a business that will purchase these from you, and then use the newly acquired funds for a good cause.

26. No Uniform Day

This fundraiser concept is ideal for you if your school allows pupils to wear uniforms. No-uniform days are scheduled many times a year. In return for a dressing down, request a little donation from the pupils. Students will get the opportunity to display their flair, and you’ll raise money.

27. Supreme Snacks

Supreme Snacks Fundraising is one of the great fundraisers for schools that require minimum effort and time to organize and raise funds. Young students can pack snacks and spread themselves, such as Beef Sticks, Jalapeno Beef Sausage, All Beef Summer Sausage, Sharp Cheddar, Smokey Bacon, Port Wine, Aged Asiago, etc., with love and sell them to make money. Ensure to keep the prices of the items lower to make your customers happy and raise the amount easily.

28. Students Cook-Off

Assign a theme to the cook-off challenge, such as pizza, muffins, or roasts, and charge a price for participation. The entries can be judged by other students and parents who donate themselves, which will boost the number of donations. Peer-to-peer fundraising allows your community members to assist you in increasing your revenue. An easy and rapid setup is required to host these types of fundraisers for schools.

29. Pancake Breakfast

Pancakes belong to the list of favorite school tiffin and breakfast items. Twist the school menu by offering hot pancakes accompanied by extra honey on the fundraiser morning before the school starts in the school gym or the canteen. Along with the tasty pancakes, offer drinks, cookies, and other refreshments to the students and charge per serving.

30. Stress Relief Event

With the increasing competition, there is already a lot on school students’ plates nowadays. To aid students in relaxing and unwinding before tests, plan a stress-relieving event. Volunteers can provide foot massages, foot soaks, and aromatherapy. There should be plenty of aromatic candles and scented oils all around, along with relaxing music to set the mood. Take small donations from the students as a registration fee to this stress relief event and collect funds.

31. Scrabble Tournament

When it comes to the quickest charity fundraising ideas for schools, Scrabble Tournament stands in the first row. It’s a full package that’s fun, cheap, and effective altogether. Ensure that every participant pays before participating. For extra cash, players can peep into a dictionary. By selling refreshments, selling raffle tickets, silent auctions, other fundraising activities, sporting events, and viral video challenges, you may raise more money.

32. Alumni Luncheon

Showing some love to the ex-students by hosting the best school fundraisers like Alumni Luncheon can be a big motivation to the existing students. Plus, it helps the schools to raise significant funds for a noble cause. How to host one? Join together with a neighborhood eatery to hold a luncheon for your alumni. The luncheon might be held separately or as a component of an alumni weekend. Either solicit donations from attendance or sell tickets to earn money.

33. Movie Night In School

Being one of the easy fundraising ideas for elementary schools, this concept applies to elementary, middle, and postsecondary institutions. Plan a movie screening for kids at your school’s community center or work with the nearby theatre to secure discounted tickets for families to see a recent film. This is a really enjoyable method to involve children and their families in fundraising for your school.

34. Bands’ Face-Off

What about some creative fundraiser ideas for schools? Sounds super fun as well as profitable, right? For many pupils, music is a pastime. Set up a friendly music band battle in your school. Charge concertgoers like friends and family who attend as well as the band members, to raise the money. A Band’s Face-Off can also be arranged virtually as a wonderful online fundraiser for school if your fund target is high as a virtual medium can bring more donations from all over the world.

35. Jellybean Count Fundraiser

This method of school fundraising is well-known for a reason -it’s highly amusing and super simple to put up within a short time. Place a jar of jelly beans in the corridor of your school. Take $1 or $2 from the students to predict the number of jellybeans in the jar. After a week of guessing, declare the winner as the individual who came the closest to correctly estimating the number of jellybeans in the jar. The winner either keeps the jar or receives a different reward.

36. Lemonade Stand

A simple lemonade stand is a great way to boost fundraising. Younger students can actively take part in this, and the biggest advantage is that it can promote local businesses. This means you can use the lemonade stand of a local lemonade seller for a day and share 50% of your earnings with him/her at the end of the day.

37. Spelling Bee Fundraiser

Do you want an idea of the best moneymaking fundraisers schools? In a spelling bee contest fundraiser, kids will compete individually. Every child is given a new word to spell, and they can either scream out their responses or write them on the board. Participation fees, registration for the parents who come to watch, or “second chances” can all be used to raise the needed money.

Some Effective Tips And Tricks To Make Your Back To School Fundraiser

No matter how much you plan or whatever fundraising ideas you choose, there are 5 key points you need to adhere to to make your Back To School Fundraising Idea 100% successful:

1. The Perfect Match Between Your Message And Your List

Carefully segment your audiences based on your fundraising idea to create the appeal in as personalized a way as possible.

2. A Robust Online Donation Page

Having an online donation page is mandatory apart from physical or face-to-face donations. This will help your outstation donors to contribute according to their convenience.

3. Unique Appeals

Be it any fundraising idea, make sure that you have added something attractive to make it more appealing. This may include quirky stuff, discount cards, scratch card offers, treat to a local restaurant, coupon books, etc.

4. Social Media Promotion

It’s important to promote the key highlights of your fundraiser on social media platforms to drive maximum attention.

5. Track Everything

Last but not the least, keep track of everything to measure how your fundraising campaign is performing, and how much gap is yet to be covered. Whether it’s a physical fundraising event or a virtual event, monitoring the results is crucial.

It’s Time To Raise Fund

Your school can fulfill its objectives and provide for its pupils in the best way possible by organizing and putting into practice a wide range of back to school fundraising ideas throughout the year. Back To School Fundraising is one of the most successful types of fundraising a school can ever come across.

Parents, teachers, and students everyone can participate in this, which strengthens the sense of community bonding even more apart from being able to raise the fund quickly. Each idea we presented above can be utilized to its fullest potential if planned in a strategic manner.