Easy Church Fundraiser Ideas

by Sylvia Branch

Churches often need to raise additional funds to keep their ministries running properly, but setting up fundraisers can be a daunting task -- especially for church workers who already have a lot on their plate. Choose easy-to-run projects that are proven moneymakers, to continue meeting the ministry needs of your community.

Food-Related Fundraisers

Pizza fundraisers include selling individual slices after church, or during meetings, for a small profit. Take orders the night before through e-mail, or have people prepay. Selling each slice for a dollar will generate a small profit. Often pizza companies have fundraising opportunities that churches can sign up for. These allow customers to save money on their pizza orders, while earning a percentage of the funds for your church. Pancake breakfasts are a low-cost way to raise funds for your church. In order to make the breakfast a success, you'll need kitchen facilities, volunteers and time to promote the event in the community. Place fliers in local businesses and have all the church members tell their friends, neighbors and families. Bake sales are another easy-to-run fundraiser. Invite individuals from the congregation to donate baked goods. Sell after church in the foyer.

Product Fundraisers

Work with a fundraising company to design calendars bearing your church's name. Start selling calendars before Christmas, so members can give them as gifts. Candy sales are an easy fundraiser. Many organizations use candy sales to raise money for specific needs. Encourage members to sell candy at their workplaces, or in their neighborhoods, to boost sales. A church-wide rummage sale is another alternative. Collect items several weeks ahead of time and advertise in the local paper. Another way to conduct a rummage sale is to sell table space. The church raises money off the table sales, while the individuals can also earn money for themselves. This eliminates storing a lot of items and cuts down on setup time. Offering to pick up large items people would like to donate can also increase the profit.

Service-Oriented Fundraisers

Car washes are a fundraising staple for church groups because they're easy to put on and are proven money-makers. You need a high-traffic location, volunteers, some basic supplies and reliable access to water. Make attention-getting signs and designate a few volunteers to hold the signs along the roadway to draw cars into the church parking lot. Offer a babysitting service on Valentine's Day, or before Christmas, as a fundraiser. Parents can take advantage of the service and use the time to go out, or get shopping done. The church can charge an hourly rate, or simply collect donations. Organize a rent-a-kid fundraiser. Have youth volunteer their time in order to help raise funds for the church. People in the congregation can "rent a youth" for a few hours to help with tasks around their homes, such as cleaning the garage, or painting a fence. Have kids work in teams and request a donation per hour, or set a fixed rate.

Event Fundraisers

Plan a golf tournament to raise funds for your church. Ask management at a golf course or mini-golf course for a group discount. Charge teams a set amount and group according to ability, or handicap, in order to keep the play fair. Request donations for door prizes and tournament prizes. Host a rock-a-thon, dance-a-thon, or walk-a-thon to raise funds. Have participants gather pledges from their friends and family. On the day of the event, sell refreshments for spectators and have fun while raising money for the church.

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