PTA Fundraisers

Shannon - posted on 08/11/2013 ( 82 moms have responded )

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I'm the PTA president at our school and I need fundraiser ideas!

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We used the "Boosterthon" program for the first time last year and it was a huge hit--we raised over $40,000! Which I thought was pretty amazing given the very small amount of effort that went into it.

We also sell muffins on Friday mornings. We buy them in bulk from a local bakery for $0.22 each and sell them for $1. We designate an area in the courtyard for parents to enjoy them with their kids too, and that gives us two sales instead of one.

We sell banners that hang around our sports fields to local businesses. A local printer prints them for us at cost in exchange for giving him a free one, and we sell them for $250 per year.

We also do "Spirit Nights" where we team up with local restaurants. They will give 20% of their profits to the school on certain nights, in exchange, we get everyone to go eat there that night so they get a boost in sales--win win!

We do "Spirit Days" where kids can buy school logo tattoos for $1. The tattoos cost less than 1 cent each if we buy in bulk.

We host a black tie gala and silent auction for parents near Valentines Day. We solicit local businesses to donate items for the auction--usually free spa days, a night at a b&b, etc. It is a great way for the businesses to get new customers, so they are usually very eager to donate something. We charge $75/couple and serve a nice dinner with live music.

We also have an "art auction"--I got this idea from my work with our children's at risk program. Each class creates a piece of art together, then we auction the art off. They can bring in a lot if parents are competitive. One piece made over $4000 one year, but most only make a couple hundred.

We also recycle. We get paid for batteries, plastic bags, juice boxes, and paper. We donate aluminum cans to the Fire department (but you could keep them and get paid for them too), and pop tops to Ronald McDonald House (but again, you could keep them).

We collect Box Tops--they come on certain grocery store products. You send them in glued to a printable paper you can download for free, and they send you 10 cent per box top.

We do the standard carnival, choral concerts, plays, and school store as well.

We also do scholastic book sale, but we donate those proceeds to the Literacy Association. (Our school has a big focus on giving back to the community....probably because I'm in charge and I have a big focus on that...)

FreedomSmellsNice - posted on 08/14/2013

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Our school cut off fundraising. It was too much stress. Instead they ask for $30 from each family, or whatever you can afford. That way all the money goes directly to the school.

Robin - posted on 08/14/2013

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I am sure there are many moms within the school who sell various items such as Premier Designs, Thirty -One, Scentsy, Mary Kay, Avon, books, maybe handmade door hangers, baked goods or hair bows, etc...... A bazaar where they set up and sell and a portion goes back to the school. It would be great networking. Or a Zumba marathon in the gym for the parents one Saturday morning a month. Charge $5.00 per person. Most moms would pay that for a good workout. We have a teacher that is a certified instructor and most gyms do. Just ask around.

Diana - posted on 08/19/2013

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Our elementary school does one that I think is the absolute best idea ever. They have a "Fall Fitness Day" that is dedicated to exercise and fitness that friends and family "Sponsor". They play games such as sack races, hula hoop, soccer, etc.

Each child is sent home with big envelope containing 8-10 form letters for the kids to address & sign, and 8-10 envelopes for the parents to fill out with the names and addresses their friends and family. They also receive a form for you to list who you addressed the envelopes to and what your child calls them (ex. Mr & Mrs. Bob & Marge Smith = Grammy & Pop-Pop). You then return everything to the school. The school stuffs all of the envelopes with the letters, a self addressed stamped envelope, and a little, plain, paper sneaker.

The idea is that your friends and family send a donation along and decorate the sneaker for your child to see. Our school then displays the sneakers near the cafeteria/gym so all the students can see them. The best part is that all of the money raised goes DIRECTLY to the school not to mention that no one has to buy or sell anything. In turn the kids have a day of fun at school where they get up and get moving. Last year our elementary school raised over $20,000!!!! All of the money over the last few years have gone to buying laptops, smart boards, and all sorts of technology that otherwise the school wouldn't have been able to afford.

We've found that people will actually donate more if they know that the school is getting all the proceeds directly (not to mention that you don't have to buy anything or feel like you are selling out your friends & family by giving out their addresses.).

Good luck!

Kiara - posted on 08/15/2013

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My daughter's school is doing a 5k Fun Run. The kids get pledges to raise money and to participate its $10 per child and $20 per adult.

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Jennifer - posted on 10/09/2014

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My daughter did a really cool fundraiser last year that is along the lines of healthy and green. They sold VegieFresh, which is a carton you just pop in the crisper bin and it extends the life of your fruits and vegetables. The product really works I wish I would have purchased more.

The cool thing about it is after it's cycle (they last for 90 days) it can be used as fertilizer. This worked great for Earth Day because the kids brought in their old VegieFresh to use as compose for the school vegetable garden.

It is my understanding the PTA surpassed their goals. I'm sure it's because this is something really new and I'm not sure if you can buy it in stores. At least I have never seen this product before. We are doing it again this year in January.

Anyway, just thought I share this neat idea. Good Luck! www.vegiefresh.com/fundraising

Tim - posted on 04/07/2014

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Generate4Schools is exactly what you're looking for I think. Go to Generate4Schools.com and check it out. It's a program designed to bridge the gap between local schools and local businesses and redirects recurring revenue back into schools that join the program.

Jan - posted on 01/05/2014

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Why not try this fun Fundraising idea!
GIGGLE DONATION CARDS
Riddles Galore with this Fun and Easy Donation Card. Scratch a Spot to Reveal your Donation Amount and a Riddle. Donation between 50c to $2. Cards cost $5 and return when completed $55. That's 1000% Return.
Visit us at giggledonationcards.com  for more details

My product is available in Canada,USA,New Zealand and Australia, There are five sets of riddles for variety and there will be a mix in each order. Thank You, Jan

Renee - posted on 08/28/2013

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my company Partylite dose a grate fundraiser that gives a high % back to the fundraiser. I will supply the forms to go out to the students parents. When the forms come back to the school, the school keeps the % then I or consultant collect the forms and the rest of the money to key everything to the company. Then the products gets shipped to the students house. If you are interested just send me a message and I can give you my web site and email. Depends on your location in Canada or the USA I can get you a consultant to meet up with you.

Diana - posted on 08/19/2013

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The other fundraiser that our school does is a Fall Festival. They usually hold it around Halloween. Parents volunteer to do face painting, run simple games like throwing a roll of toilet paper into a bucket or toilet lid, crafts like painting pumpkins donated by a local farmer, and making your own caramel apples or sundaes. Everything is free. During this they sell soft pretzels and drinks. They also hold a basket raffle. They sell tickets when you come in. Each classroom in the school makes a themed basket out of items donated by the students (Movie night, crafts, Coffee & tea, Baby basket, Gardening, etc.). It is a great family night out and everyone loves it.

Amanda - posted on 08/18/2013

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when I went to school we did the good old fashion chocolate bar sales. But I have to admit the ones I liked most were ones that gave back. My son goes to the same school I did and they just did a jean collection. The school who collected the most jeans got sweat shirts with the school logo on it. they also did the safeway bag collection. They collected as many as they could and a company made a bench out of what they collected(Not my sons school but one in the district) If you do green fundraisers I am sure you can find company's willing to donate to your cause.

Melissa - posted on 08/17/2013

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Collecting boxtops is a great way to raise money. Have all the kids bring in boxtops and then you turn them in to the company and they send you a check. Sometimes our school has raised over 3000 dollars at one time. It is an easy way to get money and no one is forced to buy anything. If you are interested, just go to boxtops for educations website and they will walk you through it.

Loretta - posted on 08/17/2013

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If you have one in your area, Papa Murphy's Take and Bake Pizza does a great fundraiser. You buy cards from them with discount deals. You pay them $1 per card and sell them for $5. The discounts total around $30 for the people buying them. Makes everyone happy! :)

Carla - posted on 08/16/2013

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My daughter's school has one fundraiser a year. They host a "spirit walk" and ask for donations (usually a minimum of $50 per student). They get local sponsors to pitch in and put their names on t-shirts they have made and each grade gets a different color shirt. Then all the kids walk about a mile around the school, going thru the local neighborhood. That night, they have a carnival. You could prepay ahead of time for a hotdog or pizza dinner. The PTA also hosted a cake decorating contest and all the entries were given away at the "cake walk" booth. Last year they raised almost $40,000!! People are more apt to donate more if its a straight donation with all proceeds going to the school and also its once a year. Most parents dislike having to sell useless stuff or food.

Marie - posted on 08/16/2013

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Krispy Kreme donuts are wonderful and easily sold. Also a fall or back to school good ole fashion carnival with games and cake walk and all is really fun for the children.

Jodi - posted on 08/16/2013

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It is like a trash and treasure, an outdoor sale at which people sell things from the trunk/boot of their car. The school sells the carparking space to you for $10 (or $20 or whatever is deemed a fair price by your community) so you can sell your stuff. It is usually done on a weekend. Holding a BBQ on site at the same time can raise extra funds!

Jodi - posted on 08/16/2013

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Sophia - posted on 08/15/2013

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I'm president this year too! Our elementary is about 500 students. We did a jog a thon on PE day and it was fabulous. 7k net. We also do a "booster" where we ask for straight donations in return they get to pick a school t-shirt, yearbook, enter in a raffle for principal for a day lots of options with incentives. That nets about 10k. However other schools in my district do the same thing and they net close to 30k, depends on your demographic and incentives you can gather before hand. We were not a 501C3 at the time so that was part of the problem. We have done food fundraisers and we partner with a local company that offers great incentives and helps with distribution. It is a little old school but we still made about 11k. We did do a pre new years eve party where parents came to eat dinner and watch student preformances, we also had some raffles, alot of work for only 3k net. We have done a Rodeo Round-Up for two years nets about 7k, but it is alot of work games, raffles, food but it is so worth it because it builds a sense of community. We start planning in January for this May event. Good Luck this year!!!

Rebecca - posted on 08/15/2013

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One of the best things our school has done is a fashion swap evening. Everyone brings in clothes and accessories they are tired of wearing and we all find 'new to us' bargains. It is brilliant fun.

Jodi - posted on 08/15/2013

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Danielle - posted on 08/15/2013

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It's not exactly a fundraiser, but we have found that SmartCal (www.smartcal.it) earns a pretty significant amount of donations for our school and it gets more parents to meetings and events. It's a calendar that you can add your events to and parents can subscribe for under a dollar every month then your school gets a 50 cent donation.

I know our school also does the painless dinners to get local restaurants to donate some of the proceeds from dinners of students and parents of our school. Most local businesses are willing to help out if it means bringing in more business for them. We've also sold the typical chocolate bars and wrapping paper, but find that our events are more successful.

Meghan - posted on 08/15/2013

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Our school has bottle drives for empties (here there's a 15¢ deposit ya get for returning them). They also have a gift card fundraiser www.fundscrip.com. papered. Chef does fund raisers too www.pampered chef.com

[deleted account]

We did away with selling things too--too stressful, and the amount of competition between students started to go a little beyond the "healthy" range and into "nasty" range. AMAZING what some people will do for a blue ribbon!

Most of our money comes from partnerships with local businesses now. Our working moms with corporate connections set up the partnerships--they target businesses who target parents, pizza places, pediatrics, dentists, indoor parks, dance studios, rec departments, gymnastics, martial arts, music instructors, etc. Then our SAHM's handle the designing, printing, basket building, bookkeeping, scheduling, advertising, and other details to pull it all together.

Michelle - posted on 08/14/2013

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My kids go to a pretty small school but we usually have a great response with fundraising. Some of the things we do are:
A Mother's day stall: Each child donates an item to be sold for a gold coin. Here in Australia that is $1 and $2. This has no costs so all the money is profit.
A Father's day stall: Same as the Mother's day stall.
An art exhibition: The art teacher displays items that the children have done and again charges a gold coin to have a look. We (the P&C) would set up stalls like a sausage sizzle, mystery jar and cake stall (with donated cakes from parents) and make money from the stalls. The art teacher would also have funds to buy supplies.
A walkathon or even readathon: Children raise money for how many laps of the oval or how many books they read in a set time frame.
Raffles: Ask local businesses for donations to have a couple of raffles a year. The businesses like to get their name out there and the school makes money.

FreedomSmellsNice - posted on 08/14/2013

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We have about 500 students, a lot of siblings too. Yes, not a lot of money comes from the state. We have a lot of parents that are more financially secure than others and I am sure they donate a lot more money. We did have a book and a silent auction, but both didn't have a huge turnout. Movies and dances brought in some money. But mostly it's straight from the parents' wallets. I am so glad that I don't have to sell anything. We have a lot of schools and everyone is always asking for money. Parents at other schools are jealous of us!

Stefani - posted on 08/14/2013

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We sold poinsettias, 2 colors and 3 different sizes. A lot of the kids sold them to local churches, friends and family.
You can also sell pumpkins (from a wholesaler) and combine it with a pumpkin carving contest for the kids with an entry fee.
We also have done a no bake bake sale. People get tired of buying things so we created a form explaining what we were attempting to specifically raise money for and then asked people to donate a no bake item. For instance it cost $5 to donate a cake to a bake sale. Instead of buying something please donate $5. You'd be amazed at how many parents/ grandparents would rather right a check then buy something that they don't really want that the school only gets a portion of the proceeds.
Trivia nights take a lot of effort but do make money. Have each grade or class create of gift basket for a silent auction.
Hope this helps

Virginia - posted on 08/14/2013

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Usborne Books & More offers a great fundraiser -- a 43% return on all sales! In a nutshell the students sell boxes of greeting cards (available in 2 options - a children's box or a more 'contemporary' box) that contain 30 cards each; they sell for $30 (making the cards only $1 a box) so offer parents and others not only a great value but a quality product. Let me know if you'd like more information! Or you can go to http://www.cardsforacausefundraisers.com... for more information as well! Virginia

[deleted account]

Freedom, that is an interesting concept. Do you raise enough money that way? We have about 1000 students, and many of them are siblings so we would only raise about $20,000 if we only got $30 from each family, $30,000 if we got $30 for each student.
Our state doesn't fund our schools well, we depend on raising at least $300,000 a year ($300 per student) to pay for all of our programs, equipment, and non state sponsored supplies.
I would love to hear more about how you allocate the funds in order to make an impact with so little.

Jodi - posted on 08/14/2013

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Mitzanne - posted on 08/13/2013

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Try to find a Premier Designs Jeweler, Their fundraiser earns money for the cause. Another great feature is whom ever the coordinator is also receives 30% of retail sales in FREE jewelry and up to $100 in other bonuses. The coordinator can either keep the free jewelry for themselves or donate it back for a future Chinese auction.

Sara - posted on 08/13/2013

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I've thought about it some more and have a couple of things to add. At our school carnival we have a silent auction. Many items are donated from local businesses. Last year one of our teachers kept an eye out on groupon and found us a really good deal on a night out and we tripled our money on that one thing. Each grade does a theme basket and end up with 2 baskets per grade (hot wheels & hairbows, family movie night, summer fun-usually use a kiddie pool instead of a basket, etc.) Each classroom does a class art project also. I think several of the teachers have found good ideas on pinterest for that.

In my experience with PTO and as a parent, the mist enjoyable and profitable of the selling type fundraisers are when you sell things you can eat. For example, with the Little Caesars fundraiser I mentioned before, you can get a pizza kit with 3 large pizzas for $18 ($6 per large pizza) and your organization can get between $5 & $7 per item sold depending on how many you sell. They also have a good bonus program and we even got a free pizza kit for selling a certain amount which we used for a class pizza party. It could easily be used for the top selling class. We only had 35 kids selling (small Head Start program) and made over $500. Multiply that by an entire elementary school and it adds up quick.

We did the Pink Zebra fundraiser and had mixed reviews. Several parents just donated money to not have to sell it. Several parents told me that people didn't want to buy candles and to come back if we decided to sell food. The plus side is the profit margin is good and there are several people in our area that buy from Pink Zebra anyways so just bought something through us instead of their regular rep.

Sharon-Kathleen - posted on 08/13/2013

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organic tulip bulbs...there is this place in VA, eco-tulips, the bulbs are all organic, good for the earth, great for fundraising! all from holland, they have more than tulips.

Hellonheels - posted on 08/13/2013

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Fall festival in the school parking lot before the school football game. Our FFA bought a piece of land and grew veggies, sold them at a roadside stand, silent auctions are always great around alma mauters-homecoming time (I.e. next season's tickets, t shirts, home decore, vendors family pack of four at one home game night).

Marlo - posted on 08/13/2013

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Fundraisers are tricky. You don't want to beg but you also need the cash for good programs. Our school has had a " Fun -Run" at the end of the school year. All the students and faculty "train" during the year to run at least a 1/2 mile. They get sponsors and raise cash by how many laps they can do around the school.
The local fire department brings out the trucks and sprays the kids (low pressure) at the finish line. They also have local vendors sponsor the tee shirts and food trucks provide refreshments. This is in place of a regular field day.

Jodi - posted on 08/13/2013

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Oh, our school does discos for the kids too! The kids have a great time, and the school raises quite a bit of money. The only real cost is the DJ.

Stacia - posted on 08/13/2013

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I would like more info on the energy bills savings. Can you tell me how to find out?

Shenna - posted on 08/13/2013

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I am a PTO member as well & we are currently trying to re-vamp our fundraising. We did a survey to see what our parents would want to do. We have them about 5 options and then the option of suggesting an idea(s). This really helped us see what our community wanted. For us- it was more "no sale" fundraising. We are going to do 2 dances ($2 entry + food sales) and we have events like "mother/daughter tea" & "father/son chow down" where we pretty much just charge for the food & entry.

Deborah - posted on 08/13/2013

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Don't know where you're located but schools in my area get parents to save on their energy bills FOR FREE and the school earns a commission every month when the parents pay their bills. This way the school earns money all year long and it does not cost the parents anything to help. Kind of like when you go to the grocery store and register your child's school for savings.

Sandra - posted on 08/13/2013

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I always liked the See's candy fundraiser before Easter...and collecting pennies ...

Kimberly - posted on 08/13/2013

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We do Otis Spunkmeyer cookies, we do local restaurants that will give a portion back to our school. We also give parents the option to give a tax deductible donation of $25-$75 or whatever they can afford per child they have for the school year. Then we tell them not to worry about doing any othe fundraisers for the school year. That seems to make some parents happy. Barnes and Noble also gives a portion back to schools if you have a book fair at their store.

Amy - posted on 08/13/2013

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Artworks is the name of the company someone mentioned above. We use then at our school. Another great one is scholastic book fair.

Cathy - posted on 08/13/2013

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There is an Art Company you can google. You have the kids draw a picture on paper provided by the company. You turn the artwork into any no. of things like mugs, garden flags, magnets, aprons. Makes a great gift and the average kids sells about 50 bucks you get 40 % or used to-- Google it. Fun and makes good money! Another is a rummage sale and auction. We made 8,000. We had tickets donated from a Bruce Springsteen concert. Loads of people bid on those. A night stay at a hotel, lamps from a furniture store. Antique furniture. The list was endless. Third --class gift baskets. We did this to give teachers money to buy supplies. Every class picks a theme. Parents send in a couple of items, gift cards solicited from area business. We raised a couple of thousand. The baskets are bid through out an event like a reading night or Back to School PTA night. Spaghetti Dinner raised 1,500 for a school of 300 students. Olive Garden donated the sauce and bread sticks and Kroger the noodles. Always write a big thank you to the local paper and name who helped out. Put your fundraisers on the school sign. Send in Public Service announcement to your weekly paper. Do a Facebook page and ask all of your friends to like it. TWEET for a week! By all means get the principal's ok first.

Corinna - posted on 08/13/2013

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Partylite is a great idea for fundraiser. It's simple to do and you get 50% of all the money earned.

Lisa - posted on 08/13/2013

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Our school does a Fall Harvest Festival (just prior to Halloween) where the teachers all have carnival-type of games or activities that folks use tickets as well as food booths that also accept tickets. The 8th grade puts on a haunted house in an emptied classroom (requires simple decoration prior and quick clean-up that night) ... yes, tickets.... Afterwards their is a free event called Trunk or Treating whereby all the candy is donated prior by willing and able families and the cars are parked in the staff parking lot and are owned and decorated by family members. PTA staff continually ensure that each vehicle is equipped generously with candy as the families file through to get some candy from each car. Children are encouraged to attend the evening in school-approved costumes with their families and a reminder to bring something to collect the goodies at the Trunk or Treating. Oh, and there is a costume parade/contest put on during the carnival time just prior to the Trunk or Treating.

Brandy - posted on 08/13/2013

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Get ahold of the marketers for Under Armor. it's a fashionable & popular sports line. they have clothing, bags, & accessories both Kids & adults like. they are doing a fundraiser for my sons football league. the kids sell candles, cookies, pizzas, magazines, & other things & earn Under Armor gear in return. the kids like it, you should check it out!

Jenny - posted on 08/13/2013

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The following is a link to JDRF. They offer a kids walk for schools. This is an educational fundraiser since they teach kids about Type 1 and Type 2 diabites and how to eat healthy. The school gets 10% of the funds raised.
http://www.jdrf.org/

Sabrina - posted on 08/13/2013

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Our school has tried to steer away from selling all the stuff to raise money. We do a boosterthon where the kids get money donated per lap they run. The group of guys that run it are absolutely wonderful. Search boosterthon fun run on internet. Cant remember the percentage they take but it is very low in comparison to other fundraisers. The parents like it because we know most of the money goes to our school and some to charity organizations as well. They have a DJ come and the guys who run it bring lots of fun stuff with them and the kids get tshirts that teachers mark off each lap they do at the end all the teachers and friends sign the shirts. I believe we raised 30000 dollars. Parents love it, kids do, and the teachers love it to. People can sponsor from all over the united sstates through the internet by credit card.

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