25+ Ways to Raise Funds | UMC YoungPeople
Connecting young people and their adult leaders to God, the church, and the world
July 2020

25+ Ways to Raise Funds

  1. Love/Friendship notes hand-delivered at retreats, etc. @ $0.20 each.
  2. Sell "Sweets for Someone Sweet" (candy) with notes attached. Hand deliver or have a pick-up table "post office."
  3. Sales: Box lunches after church; chili cook-off; refreshments at church socials; submarine (hoagie sandwiches); bake sales in church on Sunday morning/ in town on Saturday - w/ coffee!
  4. Festival of Gifts and Talents: Vote with money for best performance...or get every act off the stage ONLY by raising enough money!
  5. Egg Begs (go to one member's house to beg an egg--to next member's house to sell it!)
  6. Sell personal wake-up calls during retreats...different choices for different prices.
  7. Penny Wars - put silver and paper money in jars of other youth groups & pennies in your own group's jar. Silver & paper money count positively. Pennies are negative. The Youth group with the LEAST score wins.
  8. Romantic Dinner - for couples, with babysitting, a candlelight dinner and mood music.
  9. Sell back-rubs at back-rub stations at conferences, retreats, etc.
  10. "-THON's" (with prepaid pledges): Walk-a-thon, bike-a-thon, starve-a-thon (mesh with study on hunger), rock-a-thon, talk-a-thon, move-along-a-thon, rake-a-thon (great in the Autumn!).
  11. Donations for: Babysitting, lawn mowing, parents' night out, Rent-a-Youth Day.
  12. Dances: Valentine's Day, Barn/Square Dance, Eighties Dance, Fifties Dance, Twenties Dance…
  13. Weekly bagel/donut sale at church.
  14. Singing telegrams (e.g., for Valentine's).
  15. Zany Dinner Theatre/Variety Show/Family Night G Movie/Saturday Matinee for kids with popcorn and "the works".
  16. Giant district-wide pillow fight ($2/participant; rules, referees, nurse; YSF skit; newspaper coverage; food; everyone brings own pillow).
  17. Community lock-in, with Christian music group.
  18. Challenge another youth group or district to see who raises the most. The one raising the least does something special...or crazy...that's agreed upon in advance.
  19. Auction off stuff: Memorabilia like photographs, belongings of a favorite counselor, handmade things, or treasures from a neat event--or have a Mystery Auction. Everyone donates "unknown" wrapped items (valid &/or crazy) and auction them off.
  20. Cutest baby picture contest (vote with money).
  21. YSF fishbowl for loose change (for whole congregation).
  22. Athletic/social nights (e.g., volleyball - dance - board game night) and charge to participate.
  23. Find a space in your church building and adopt a Recycling project.
  24. Designate a special offering for YSF at your annual Youth Sunday worship service.
  25. TITHE all your group's fundraisers to Youth Service Fund. This is serious giving!

Online and Crowd-Sourced Fundraising

Below are some crowd-sourced ways that you and your ministry might consider raising funds. Use these online tools to create buzz, benefit from the various social networks of which your young people are a part, and tap into the overall resurgence of philanthropic giving happening all over the world!

  • http://www.crowdrise.com/ - Supported by numerous celebrities, CROWDRISE is one tool for non-profits to create fundraising campaigns to reach the masses.
  • http://www.kickstarter.com/ - Is your youth ministry engaged in some artistic or adventurous projects? Then KICKSTARTER might be the right tool for you to build up a team of Backers. Those who donate receive "rewards" defined by the project leaders - letters during a trip, copies of the new praise band cd, etc.
  • http://www.indiegogo.com/ , and http://www.rockethub.com/ round out a set of web sites interested in helping creative people help the world by gathering support for their project.

Use these tools for the betterment of your ministries! And let us know if you find others to list!