35+ Best School Fundraising Ideas to Raise More in 2020

Explore our top school fundraising ideas to raise more this year.

As an educational professional, you know that well-educated children create a promising future. Giving each student equal opportunity to thrive as they grow is essential, and that starts with a great education!

However, you probably are also aware that providing this education, and supplementary opportunities, is expensive. And, schools are unfortunately underfunded!

That means it’s often up-to-you to raise the needed funds for your school. At 99Pledges, we’ve seen the pressure this can put on educational professionals and have pulled together a list of fundraising ideas that may just make that job easier.

With the following 35+ school fundraising ideas, your school will be able to raise more in the new year. These ideas will be broken out into the following five groups:

As we’re well into the new year, there’s no time to waste! The following ideas are sure to improve your school’s fundraising potential going forward.

Feel free to navigate to a specific section using the above bullet points, or continue reading to explore them all. Let’s get started!

Check out our favorite school fundraising idea.

Our Favorite School Fundraising Idea

99 Pledges school fundraisers are our favorite idea to raise more this year.

1. 99Pledges School Fundraisers

Consider using this school fundraising idea to raise more this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Here at 99Pledges, we specialize in pledge fundraisers. Whether a walk-a-thon or a dance-a-thon, a read-a-thon or a color run– we’re big fans!

These fundraisers are incredibly effective for school fundraising, and you’ll see a few unique ideas sprinkled throughout this list. The reason we’re such big fans of these fundraisers is simple: they’re easy to set up and they have huge fundraising potential.

Check it out:

1. Your school’s leadership creates an overall pledge fundraising campaign to raise funds for your activities.

2. You create pages for participating students (or teams, in some scenarios) in conjunction with your overall page.

3. Participants share their pages with friends and family leading up to the event, collecting pledged donations.

4. These pledged donations correspond to some challenge participants will complete during your fundraiser (ex: “$1 for every book read” or “$5 for every hour danced).

At the end of the fundraiser, these pledged donations become actual gifts to your organization! With fun activities, healthy competition, and easily collected and managed gifts– pledge fundraising methods are great for educational efforts.

Check out our favorite elementary school fundraising ideas that work!

Elementary School Fundraising Ideas (That Work!)

A spell-a-thon is an elementary school fundraising idea that works.

2. Spell-a-Thon

Consider using this elementary school fundraising idea this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A spell-a-thon gives elementary students— who are working each day to develop their reading and writing— a chance to raise funds while displaying what they’re learning at your school. Incorporate pledge fundraising methods in a spelling competition.

You can set this up in one of two ways: a traditional spelling bee model or a more personal spelling challenge. For the second option, choose a set number of difficulty-appropriate words and test students en masse on the words. For both options, pledged donations correspond to the number of words the student spells correctly!

Whichever option you choose, make sure you’re encouraging developing minds rather than creating unnecessary competition! The key point is to celebrate students for what they have learned, rather than discourage them for what they haven’t yet.

A school sleepover is an elementary school fundraising idea that works.

3. School Sleepover

This school fundraising idea is fun for everyone involved!

Cost: $$

Effort: ✔✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Around elementary age is often when sleepovers and slumber parties are incorporated into students’ social lives for the first time. Draw on this in your school fundraising for a fun experience for students (and parents!) alike while raising gifts to fuel your educational programs!

Recruit staffers to help in the charge and invite students to return in the evening for a school-wide sleepover. Charge a small fee for overnight childcare and set up fun activities such as movie viewings, board games, and pre-bed stories. 

With an overnight event, it’s crucial that all of the necessary waivers and permissions are signed. Consider taking your waivers online for added convenience, increasing the likelihood they’re signed on time. 

A read-a-thon is an elementary school fundraising idea that works!

4. Read-a-Thon

Lean how to use this school fundraising idea to raise more this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Use your next elementary school fundraiser to encourage literacy in your young students and their families.

Host a month-long read-a-thon, challenging students to read as many books as possible for the duration. Incorporate pledge fundraising methods by having students collect pledged gifts corresponding to each book they read over the month, and encourage their family members to join in on the fun!

At the end of the fundraiser, announce how both how many books were read and how much was raised in donations because of it. Further, consider incorporating a used book sale in celebration, a fundraising idea you’ll read about shortly.

A bake sale is a great school fundraising idea.

5. Bake Sale

Learn how to incorporate this elementary school fundraising idea that works!

Cost: $$

Effort: ✔✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

At the end of a long day (or even the start— we’re not here to judge!), it’s hard to pass up a yummy, homemade baked good. Recruit your PTO/PTA to whip up their most-loved baked confections to sell during a bake sale fundraiser.

Then, simply set up a table during drop-off and pick-up to sell the goods for a small price. Ask your PTO/PTA parents if they’re open to donate time in addition to baked goods, and organize a volunteer schedule to manage the table. Make sure to thank these parents and guardians for all of their help in the charge!

Remember that food allergies are particularly sensitive around baked goods, so make sure to include gluten and peanut-free options if possible.

Learn about talent shows, one of our top elementary school fundraising ideas that work.

6. Talent Show

Learn how to incorporate this school fundraising idea in your efforts.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

There are few things more adorable than students showing their new talents. While they may not be Beethoven or Van Gogh just yet, it’s a privilege to witness greatness in the making!

Whether singing and dancing or showing off some new magic tricks, your students have talents and it’s time to showcase them. Charge a small entry fee for participation and sell tickets for family and friends to experience the fun.

You can make this a competition by bringing on judges and awarding prizes at the end, or you can simply make it a showcase of your talented students! Either way, participants and attendees will have fun and you’ll raise funds!

A multicultural fair is one of our top elementary school fundraising ideas that work.

7. Multicultural Fair

Learn how to host your own multicultural fair, one of our top school fundraising ideas.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Part of educating students involves making sure they’re aware of the world around them and the diversity it contains. The world is a beautiful bed of diversity, and exposing your students to different cultures will make them more rounded and understanding as they head into it.

Host a multicultural fair for students and their families to attend and learn from. Charge a fee for admission and do your research to ensure interest and accuracy.

Consider the following categories to help you highlight the cultures of the world:

  • Food
  • Clothing
  • Music
  • History

At the event, make sure you’re presenting a wide variety of cultures and doing so respectfully. You’ll be celebrating diversity and teaching your students to do the same as they navigate life!

A scavenger hunt is an elementary school fundraising idea that works!

8. Scavenger Hunt

Learn how to incorporate this school fundraising idea in your efforts today.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A scavenger hunt can require a bit more planning on behalf of your school, but they’re a great fundraiser to get students excited and involved in the process!

You simply choose a theme, choose a location and time frame, and outline your hunt. Incentivize students to participate with prizes for those that successfully complete the scavenger hunt.

Allow students to participate for a small donation, and tie your hunt to educational themes to make sure they’re learning through the process. Get creative, and have fun!

Learn how to incorporate penny drives, an elementary fundraising idea that really works, in your efforts this year.

9. Penny Drive

A penny drive is a great school fundraising idea.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Penny drives are an extremely simple way for elementary students to fundraise and feel involved in the process.

Simply give each class, or grade, a large jar and challenge them to bring in change from home to fill the jars. The first group to fill their jar wins!

Reward the winning group with prizes such as:

  • In-School Movie Screening
  • Lunchtime Pizza Party
  • Extended Recess/Field Day

The lowkey yet competitive nature of this fundraiser makes it perfect for young students. They can get involved without much effort and your school raises funds in the process.

A school picnic is a great elementary fundraising idea (that works!) to use in your efforts this year.

10. School Picnic

Learn how to make the most of this school fundraising idea today.

Cost: $$

Effort: ✔✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Encourage community within your school by creating an event for students, their families, and school employees to interact. Choose a sunny day one weekend within the school year and host a school picnic.

Charge an admission fee for families and friends to attend and organize the lunch in a nice, grassy area. Set up fun outdoor activities such as kickball, a pinata, and arts and crafts and encourage families to interact with each other and your staffers.

Remain cognizant of events occurring in your school and the greater community and make sure you’re not scheduling your picnic for a particularly busy weekend. 

Explore our top unique fundraising ideas for all ages.

Unique School Fundraisers for All Ages

A superhero walk-a-thon is a unique fundraising idea perfect for all ages.

11. Superhero Walk-a-Thon

Learn how to incorporate this school fundraising idea in your efforts this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

By now, you’re probably very familiar with classic walk-a-thon fundraiser. While certainly a worthwhile event, it can be nice to switch things up for some added experience!

Walk-a-thons use pledge fundraising methods, with participants gathering pledged donations corresponding to how many laps, units of distance, etc they walk during the event. For this event, all you need is:

  • An online walk-a-thon campaign and corresponding pages for participants.
  • A space for participants to walk in.
  • An excited group of participants.

Then, advertise it as a superhero-themed event and ask participants to dress up as their favorite hero!

The walk-a-thon is a great event for participants of all ages because anyone, old or young, can participate. Plus, superheroes are universally liked, so the theme is sure to resonate with everyone in your audience.

Learn how to host a teachers in jail school fundraiser.

12. Teachers in Jail

Learn how to incorporate this unique school fundraiser in your efforts.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Teachers in Jail fundraisers are fun for students of all ages, elementary and high school alike. Challenge your students to raise a certain amount of money in a certain amount of time, and allow them to “jail” their teacher when they do!

Generally, this means they get a free period without being taught for a day. Or, you can take this a step further and create a fun experience (such as a field day, game period, etc.) and invite all classes that hit their goal!

A family fun day is a unique school fundraiser for all ages.

13. Family Fun Day

A family fun day is a great school fundraising idea to try.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A family fun day is similar to a field day, except you invite your students’ families to join in on the fun. Consider taking things a step further and adding a competitive element, charging a small fee for registration and allowing families to sign up as teams and compete in the various events.

There are a ton of fun competitive events to include:

  • Tug-of-war
  • Kickball
  • Egg race
  • Sack race

You get the idea! This event brings families together for a common cause and one that’s fun for everyone involved, at that.

Learn how to host a pajama day, a unique school fundraiser, this year.

14. Pajama Day

A pajama day is a great school fundraising idea to raise more.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Who doesn’t want to wear their comfiest pajamas out in the world sometimes?

This one is pretty straightforward. Simply invite students to wear dress code-appropriate pajamas to school in exchange for a small donation to your fundraiser.

Consider stepping the day up by screening a movie and providing popcorn, or adding a competitive element by awarding the funniest, most creative, and comfiest-looking pajama-wearers!

A shoe drive fundraiser is a unique school fundraiser to raise more this year.

15. Shoe Drive Fundraiser

Learn how to use this school fundraising idea in your efforts this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A shoe drive fundraiser is great for students of any age because during school is when students are going through their biggest period of growth. A shoe drive fundraiser allows parents of growing children to donate out-grown athletic shoes and your school to profit from it.

The steps are simple:

1. Ask parents to donate new and gently worn running shoes they and their children are no longer using.

2. Package those shoes and send them to a shoe drive fundraiser representative.

3. Once the shoes are processed, a check is mailed back to your school!

Learn more about this unique fundraising idea on Funds2Orgs.

A movie night is a unique school fundraiser to raise more this year.

16. Movie Night

Learn how to incorporate a movie night, a great school fundraising idea, in your efforts this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Movies are universally enjoyed across the ages. Whether a fresh-out-of-Pre K student or a too-cool-for-school high school student, it’s hard to pass up enjoying a good movie with friends.

Host an afterschool movie night featuring a popular, recently-released (or maybe old classic!) film. Sell tickets for admission and supplement the fundraiser by selling concessions such as popcorn, movie-theatre candy, carbonated drinks.

Make sure the movie you’re featuring adheres to any requirements outlined in your education system about what’s appropriate to show different ages of students. Further, consider incorporating an educational element by tying the movie you’re showing to your current curriculum.

A used book sale is a unique school fundraiser to raise more.

17. Used Book Sale

Learn how to use this school fundraising idea to raise more this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Remember the read-a-thon mentioned earlier? This is the perfect fundraising event to supplement that!

Ask students and their families to donate books they’ve finished reading and are no longer using. Then, open a used book store at your school to fundraise.

By accepting books from everyone, whether one of your youngest students or their parents, you’re sure to collect a wide variety of books. You’ll have something for readers of all levels and interests, and promote literacy in your students and their families alike.

Learn how to incorporate a balloon pop fundraiser, a unique school fundraiser, in your calendar this year.

18. Balloon Pop Fundraiser

A balloon pop fundraiser is a fun school fundraising idea to use this year.

Cost: $$

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A balloon pop fundraiser is an exciting experience for all involved! The steps are simple:

1. Choose an assortment of prizes and write them down on small pieces of paper.

2. Fold up the pieces of paper and place each inside of an inflated balloon.

3. Sell the balloons to students (and maybe their family members) for a fixed price.

4. Host a balloon pop event where everyone that purchased one pops it and claims their prize.

Make sure you’re choosing a wide variety of prizes to keep things interesting. For example, a $5 coffee gift card, a “free period” coupon, and a $25 Amazon gift card would all be good items to include. Choose items that your organization would make money selling without charging too high of a price per balloon.

Learn how to use a chili cook off, a unique school fundraiser, in your efforts this year.

19. Chili Cook-Off

A chili cook off is a popular school fundraising idea to raise more.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A chili cook-off is a fun event for both competitors and attendees alike. There are a few different ways to structure this:

  • Challenge families to brew up their best chili recipe and enter it into the competition.
  • Challenge local restaurants to put their chili recipe to the test.

Charge a small price for registering as a competitor. Host an event pitting all of the chili recipes against one another and sell tickets for members of your community to taste and vote on their favorites.

Consider tasking highly-recognizable members of your school community (think: the principal, the president of the PTO/PTA, local government leaders) with being official judges of the chili. At the end of the night, award judge-chosen winners and community favorites!

Explore our top fundraising ideas for school trips.

Simple Fundraising Ideas for School Trips

A volunteer-a-thon is a great fundraising idea for school trips.

20. Volunteer-a-Thon

Learn how to hold a volunteer-a-thon, a simple fundraising idea for school trips.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

There are few things that will motivate people to fund your school trip more than seeing the generosity of your students in action! It’s easy to contribute to education that is working toward creating positive members of the community when you see that work in action.

Organize a volunteer-a-thon where you challenge students to enter your greater community and complete goods deeds. Whether working at a food bank or planting trees in a local park, there will definitely be areas for these students to lend a hand.

Incorporate pledge fundraising methods, with students collecting pledged gifts corresponding to the number of volunteer hours they complete. 

A raffle is a great school fundraising idea-- learn why here.

21. Raffle

Learn how to hold a raffle, a great fundraising idea for school trips.

Cost: $$$

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Create raffle baskets and sell tickets to parents and other family members at a fixed price.

Make sure you’re raffling items that are of interest to members of your school community, such as:

  • Movie night baskets.
  • Ultimate game night baskets.
  • Sports tickets.
  • Spa experience gift cards.
  • Museum or other landmark tickets.

This works best when tied to another event (think: a main fundraising event or even something unrelated, such as a sports game). At the end of the raffle, the person with the ticket pulled wins the item!

Discover why a viral video challenge is a great fundraising idea for school trips.

22. Viral Video Challenge

Learn how to use this school fundraising idea, a viral video challenge, to raise more this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

School trips can be expensive— hence why you’re fundraising to make them possible! A viral video challenge allows your organization to raise massive amounts of gifts with very little startup costs and efforts.

To hold a viral video challenge, you simply brainstorm a creative challenge for your community to complete (such as the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge). Then, film prominent members of your school community completing it, post it to social media, and challenge students and their families to do the same.

Each time someone completes the challenge, they task someone in their network with doing the same. Each person that finishes the challenge and shares it donates to your school fundraiser. Set up a crowdfunding page for your trip to easily collect gifts once the challenge takes off and watch the reach of your fundraiser grow.

A color run is a great fundraising idea for school trips.

23. Color Run

Learn how to incorporate this school fundraising idea, a color run, in your efforts this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A color run is similar to a 5K but amplified with the use of colorful chalk. With this small and simple change, the event is completely changed and significantly more interesting.

As runners navigate the 5K, onlookers throw brightly colored chalk at them. By the time they finish, they’re covered in a rainbow of chalk!

You can charge a small registration fee for runners and walkers to participate. Further, use pledge fundraising methods by having participants gather pledged gifts corresponding to their completion of the race. It’s a simple, inexpensive way to amplify a classic event.

A restaurant spirit night is a great fundraising idea for school trips.

24. Restaurant Spirit Night

Learn how to incorporate a restaurant spirit night, a great school fundraising idea, in your efforts this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

This fundraiser is incredibly simple and inexpensive to host, but if marketed well, it could be quite the success for your organization.

A restaurant spirit night involves pairing with a local restaurant in your fundraising. You agree on a specific night and a percentage of proceeds from that night are directed to your organization. Then, you simply advertise the event and ask students and families to eat there that night and mention you!

Aim to choose a restaurant that’s popular and accessible for most of your community to make the most of this event.

A pancake breakfast is a great fundraising idea for school trips.

25. Pancake Breakfast

Learn how to use a pancake breakfast, a great school fundraising idea, to raise more this year.

Cost: $ $

Effort: ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Invite families and friends in your school community to join together for breakfast, and raise funds in the process! Task visible figures of your school’s leadership (think: the principal, the vice principal, sports coaches, teachers) with cooking a breakfast for the ages for your community.

Sell tickets charging a small fee for admission, making sure it’s high enough to cover the cost of supplies. Further, consider incorporating a raffle element– such as an “ultimate brunch basket”– to raise more donations through the event.

Hold the event on a weekend morning for higher turnout. Pay attention to your community’s greater calendar, however, to ensure you’re not overlapping with another important event.

A trivia night is a great fundraising idea for school trips-- keep reading to learn why.

26. Trivia Night

Discover how to use a trivia night as your top fundraising idea for your next school trip.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Trivia nights are a low-cost, fun-for-everyone fundraising event that’s friendly for all ages. Plus, they have clear ties to educational material– what better way to raise money for a school trip?

Simply invite students and their families back to school after-hours for a trivia competition. Charge a small fee for registration, allowing families to compete as teams or perhaps, entire classrooms. If you plan far enough ahead, you could even incorporate pledge fundraising methods with pledges corresponding to questions successfully answered by teams.

Vary your trivia questions to ensure everyone is engaged. For example, film and history questions will appeal to parents, and students will love curriculum-based questions where they can show their family members all that they’ve learned!

Learn why a car wash is a great fundraising idea for school trips.

27. Car Wash

Learn how to use this school fundraising idea, a car wash, to fund your next school trip.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A car wash is a classic fundraising event sure to bring in gifts for your next school trip. Donors will appreciate your students working hard to fund their trip, and students will have fun in the process!

All you need is:

  • A space to wash cars in.
  • Soap and water to wash the vehicles.
  • Excited students ready to participate.

Market the car wash in advance, inviting members of your community to purchase a car wash from your students. Plan the event for a weekend morning, and watch the donations roll in! Make sure the event is highly supervised, and have parents/guardians of participating students sign a waiver giving them permission to join in the fun.

Learn how to use a charity gala, a great fundraising idea for school trips, this year.

28. Charity Gala

A charity gala is a great school fundraising idea to raise more.

Cost: $ $

Effort: ✔ ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆


While a charity gala requires more resources to plan and execute, the event can be well worth your efforts when gifts come in.

A charity gala is usually an elevated dinner event, often with speakers and entertainers soliciting gifts throughout the duration. Plan an event that’s both interesting and enjoyable for attendees, while also affordable for your organization. (Bringing on sponsors to fund the event itself is a helpful tip.)

Set tickets at a slightly higher price and offer the option for local businesses to purchase seats by the table. These organizations will be able to show their philanthropic prowess as well as network with one another.

Discover our top after-school program fundraising ideas.

Awesome After-School Program Fundraising Ideas

A dance-a-thon is a great after-school program fundraising idea.

29. Dance-a-Thon

Learn how to use a dance-a-thon, a great school fundraising idea, to raise more.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A dance-a-thon is a simple and fun event that’s perfect for after-school fundraising. You can host the event directly after school and hold it until the end of your after school program offerings, or hold it on a Friday afternoon and extend it into the weekend!

You simply:

  • Create pledge fundraising pages for your after-school program participants.
  • Encourage them to share those pages with their friends and family members, collecting pledged gifts.
  • These pledged donations correspond to either their participation in the event overall or the number of hours they dance in the event.

At the event, keep an age-appropriate playlist rolling and encourage students to dance the evening away. The longer they dance (or if they successfully complete the event at all), the more gifts will come in!

Coupon books are a great after-school program fundraising idea.

30. Coupon Books

Learn how to use coupon books, a great school fundraising idea, this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Parents enrolling their students in after school programs are doing so to manage their busy schedules. Coupon books play on that need for convenience by mapping out ways for busy parents to save money without extra effort on their end.

These books require some advance planning from your school. Reach out into your community and see if any local businesses are open to pairing with your school to offer discounts to your community.

In return, local businesses are advertised to every person that purchases a coupon book and hopefully get increased business in return!

A family festival is a great after-school program fundraising idea.

31. Family Festival

Learn how to use this school fundraising idea to raise more.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔ ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Normally, planning a family festival would be somewhat intensive. From deciding on a venue to hanging decorations, there are quite a few pieces to juggle for just your after-school leadership alone!

Draw on your after-school program students to help in the charge. These students can help create decorations and set up the event. They’ll feel proud showing off their hard work to their families, and parents will appreciate the exhibition of their children’s efforts.

Charge a small entry fee for the festival. Include fun events, such as games and crafts tables, and create a space for busy families to bond after the school day!

Learn how to host a play, a great after-school program fundraising idea.

32. Host a Play

Hosting a play is a great school fundraising idea.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Give after-school students a task to work toward once the school day ends and build toward a successful fundraiser in the process.

Put on a play for the families of your students to enjoy. Assign each student with a role to work on, giving them a moment to shine in front of their family members.

Charge a small admission fee for parents to attend the show, and hold it right after the after-school program commences for the day– ensuring as many parents as possible can attend. Consider bolstering the event’s fundraising potential with snacks and refreshments and highlight your student’s success!

Best seat in the house is a great after-school program fundraising idea.

33. Best Seat in the House

Learn how to use Best Seat in the House, a great school fundraising idea, to raise more.

Cost: $ $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

“Best Seat in the House” is essentially a raffle. Your school sells raffle tickets to parents, with the prize being high-value tickets to a popular event in your area (think: sports event, play, concert).

Because the raffle item will be highly coveted, you can slightly increase ticket prices while also likely selling more tickets overall.

As far as raffles are concerned, this fundraising idea can be pricey if your organization has to purchase the tickets yourself. Consider coordinating with these local events to see if they’d be willing to donate the tickets to your fundraiser, effectively sponsoring it with the in-kind donation.

Learn how to use a t-shirt fundraiser to raise more. It's a great after-school program school fundraising idea.

34. T-Shirt Fundraiser

A t-shirt fundraiser is a great school fundraising idea.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A t-shirt fundraiser draws on your after-school program students’ school spirit and desire to fit in with one another.

As an activity, ask students in the program to each design their ideal program t-shirt. Then, hold a vote for the students to choose their favorites!

Produce these t-shirts and sell them to students and their family members. This may seem expensive, but it doesn’t have to be! Pair with a company that specializes in t-shirt fundraising, to make the process as simple and low-cost as possible. Visit Bonfire to learn more.

Discover how a food truck fundraiser, a great after-school program fundraising idea, can hep you raise more.

35. Food Truck Fundraiser

A food truck fundraiser is a great school fundraising idea.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Do you have any foodies in your after school bunch? Or, maybe an active food truck presence in your community?

Pair with a locally loved food truck, inviting them to park in your school’s parking lot around pickup. Then, as parents pick up their children for the night, they can grab dinner as well! The added convenience (and tasty treats) will be a fun change to their normal routines.

The food truck benefits from increased visibility and sales, while your program gets a percentage of the proceeds.

Learn how to use a parent's night out fundraiser, a great after-school program fundraising idea, to raise more.

36. Parent’s Night Out

A parent's night out fundraiser is a great school fundraising idea.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔ ✔ ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

Extend your hours for one night, providing childcare beyond when you normally would. At the same time, plan a fun “date night” for parents to enjoy knowing their kids are cared for in the duration.

Whether a game night or a local restaurant-catered dinner, parents will enjoy the time to reconnect. Plus, their kids will enjoy the evening with peers– especially if you plan a special activity, such as a pajama-themed movie night!

Charge a fee that encompasses childcare for the night as well as tickets to the event itself. The sheer convenience of this event will make it a hit!

A bowl-a-thon is a great school fundraising idea.

37. Bowl-a-Thon

Learn how to use a bowl-a-thon, a great after-school program fundraising idea, to raise more this year.

Cost: $

Effort: ✔

Fun: ☆☆☆☆☆

A bowl-a-thon incorporates pledge fundraising methods to a classic social event– bowling.

Allow students to compete on their own, form teams with their peers, or even form teams with their family members. Charge a small fee to play (generally covering the cost of renting shoes) and create pledge fundraising pages for each player.

The players collect pledged gifts corresponding to the pins they knock over during the course of the tournament. Your students enjoy a fun night with one another and your organization gets donations in the process!


As an educational professional, you not only have to raise a lot of funds– you have to be efficient when doing so! With the above fundraising ideas, and some excited staffers and students, you can raise in your fundraising efforts this year.

If the above ideas didn’t fit your school’s needs, check out these additional resources for more guidance:

Learn how to use our pledge fundraising software to execute your top school fundraising idea today!