Top 12 Fundraising Ideas

by: FamilyEducation Staff
Looking for new ways to raise money for your child's school? Try one of these winning ideas, suggested – and tested – by our readers. Please share your own ideas in the comments section below so that other parents can learn some tips and tricks for their fundraisers!
Fundraising ideas, roll of blue raffle tickets
This is a reliable old standby because it works, and it's fun! You could do a classic 50/50 raffle where the winner gets half of the money raised, or a "chance ticket" prize raffle, where students and parents collect donated prizes from area business and then sell "chance tickets" that give people a shot at the prizes. Raffles work best in conjunction with another event like a school fair or sports game. With prizes donated by area businesses, you'll make a 100% profit!

One parent says: "The kids liked helping sell the tickets, and they also drew the winning tickets for the prizes. It made them feel more involved with the fundraising."

Fundraising ideas, themed gift basket for school raffle
Basket Raffle
Here's a really creative spin on a classic raffle. Every class picks a theme for the basket they're putting together — something like sports, chocolate, or summer fun. Ideally, students or parents get the items for the basket donated from local businesses that have something to offer related to that theme. Present a list of baskets and their contents to friends, family, and neighbors and sell raffle tickets for a shot at winning one. Your school can make quite a profit!

One parent says: "Be creative! The baskets are beautiful, and people think this is a great idea. Our school made $2,000 this year."

Fundraising ideas, childs drawing
Student Artwork Product Sale
Collaborate with your school's art teacher on this idea. Your proud relatives will line up to buy products personalized with your child's school artwork, such as notecards, t-shirts, and tote bags. is one company that offers creative fundraisers like this. The sale will encourage your young Picasso and benefit his school!

One parent says: "This is very easy to do. Parents love it, and kids love to see their own artwork reproduced. It celebrates each child's creativity!"

Fundraising ideas, candle in a jar for school sale
Candle Sale
Many people buy candles for their home anyway, so candle fundraisers are popular. Team up with a candle company like Yankee Candle Fundraising, Home & Garden Party Candles, Gold Canyon, or Home Interiors Candles. This type of fundraiser tends to work best when managed classroom by classroom, since it usually involves collecting money from buyers before the order is placed.

One parent says: "Incredibly simple! All we had to do was take the orders, turn them in with the payments, and the candle company rep took care of the rest."

Fundraising ideas, four colorful tags spelling out SALE
Garage Sale
One person's junk can be a school's treasure! Organize a garage sale, and you'll clean out your house and give back to the community at the same time. You can make the sale as small or large as you like, depending on the number of donated items and the possible locations for the sale (the school gymnasium might be an option on the weekend, if there are no sports games).

One parent says: "Box up and sell everything you haven't used over the past year. I know it's hard, but it's for your own good and the good of the school. The school gets 100% of the profits. You get a clean house."

Fundraising ideas, bricks for engraving for school fundraiser
Engraved Bricks
Give your fundraiser customers the opportunity to leave their mark! Sell engraved bricks or ceramic tiles that will be used in a school walkway or courtyard, or to decorate a wall. Partner with a brick-engraving company like or one in your area. Be sure to reach out to alumni of the school, either through mailings (if you the school keeps tabs on alums) or — even easier — through a Facebook page for alumni.

One parent says: "People like to leave a lasting impression. Just have someone willing to double check the spelling of names, etc., before the bricks are made and put in place."

Fundraising ideas, daffodils for school flower sale
Flower Sale
This is a great event to hold before Easter or Mother's Day! Contact a local nursery that will sell you potted and hanging plants at a discount. Send order forms home with the students, tally the orders, arrange the transport of the plants to your school, and have people pick up their orders there.

One parent says: "This is a great possibility, if you can find a cooperating nursery and charge a decent amount for the flowers. Plus, many people find it easier to pick up the plant on their way home, rather than actually going to a nursery."

Fundraising ideas, green plastic Tupperware storage bowl
Tupperware Sale
Tupperware is as useful as ever, and the company has a catalog just for fundraisers. You collect the orders and money up front, and your school gets 40% of the sales. Plus, parents will be glad to know that Tupperware items are BPA-free.

One parent says: "Tupperware has an exclusive fundraiser line with items that can't be found in the regular catalog. It's best to have a 'kickoff night' where parents, students, and teachers learn what's going on with the sale."

Fundraising ideas, chocolate bar for school candy sale
Candy Sale
Although this isn't the healthiest option, selling candy can help students raise money quickly and easily. Most candy fundraisers provide 100% profit, since items will cost you about 50 cents apiece (when bought in bulk) and you can sell them for a dollar. Opt for popular candy that friends and neighbors will find hard to resist. Just be sure that your kids don't end up buying/eating much of the candy!

One parent says: "Use the power of the sweet tooth to your advantage. Candy sales are easy to organize, easy to manage, and easy to make a profit."

Fundraising ideas, 2012 Entertainment Book of coupons and discounts
Entertainment Coupon Books
Who doesn't love a good deal? These books provide lots of coupons and discounts on restaurants, stores, and entertainment. You can order local books, or books for other parts of the country where friends and family live. The books aren't cheap (usually around $25), but you have the potential to earn thousands.

One parent says: "Parents have the potential to email their school's account number nationwide, and friends and family from far away can order a book locally to their area and the school still gets the credit."

Fundraising ideas, hand in rubber glove with sponge and bucket
Car Wash
Find a local car wash business to sponsor your event at their site, or have a DIY car wash in a prominent parking lot where you supply the helpers, soap, water, and towels. Kids can design signs to advertise your fundraiser on main street corners. Give credit to any local sponsors on your posters or flyers, and they'll probably be glad to help your school or organization. This is a great fundraiser for teens to get involved in.

One parent said: "With a little sweat up front, your school will come away squeaky clean — 100% profits minus the cost of the simple supplies."

Fundraising ideas, personal size pizza for school fundraiser
Pizza Kit Sale
Everybody scream for... pizza? Yup! Pizza is an occasional treat that every family enjoys, so your school can reap the rewards. Pizza and food fundraiser companies like provide a good profit with no money up front.

One parent said: "The pizza kits truly do sell themselves. The cookie dough that the company offers was also extremely easy and profitable."

Remember to share your fundraiser ideas and feedback in the comments area below!