Clubs and organizations help to build social skills and lasting friendships among group members. Participants have opportunities through club memberships that might otherwise be inaccessible to them. Any club function, whether it be a rewarding trip, arts and crafts or helping others, requires funding. Clubs often rely on community support for fund-raising activities. "Providing children fund-raising opportunities for philanthropic causes contributes to the development of moral judgment and a better understanding of civic responsibility," according to Tracey Fritz, a graduate student at Ferris State University. There many types of fund-raising to keep your club active.
The website fundraiserinsight.org, cautions that school and community clubs should avoid donation-based fundraisers in which donors get nothing in return for their money. These fundraisers corner family members into donating when they can't afford it, and make them resentful for being obligated. Children also need to learn that needs and wants must be earned with hard work. Families and community members will be much more supportive knowing that they're helping their loved one reach a goal and getting something in exchange for their money.
Clubs can try the traditional bake sale in which members bring a designated baked good and sell individual servings for a quarter (or other amount of money). Spaghetti dinners have long been a part of fund-raising history. If your community and organization are burnt out on the same old food fund-raisers, come up with something unique. Fundraiserinsight.org provides several great food fund-raising ideas to choose from, such as an all-you-can-eat baked potato bar, pancake breakfast or a soup kitchen fund-raiser. Barbecue and chili cook-offs are a hit with communities; proud cooks are willing to pay an entry fee to hold their titles in these contests. Another creative idea has guests bidding for mystery dinners. Volunteers prepare a variety of dinners in single servings ahead of time and conceal their identities from bidders. A food warmer and talented emcee who can keep the crowd guessing are needed to make this a smash.
A great way to raise money and provide a community service at the same time is to organize a community service workforce. Community members who need a service such as having their grass mowed, leaves raked, or house cleaned can contact a group leader or volunteer who can then dispatch a group member or team to do the work. Rather than charge an hourly rate, make your services available by donation only. You'll probably find some very generous community members who really appreciate the assistance.
There are a variety of brochure fundraisers available, such as cookie dough, pizza, candy, candles and home decor items. Once you decide what to sell, contact the company to have the catalogs sent to your club. Each club member takes a brochure and tries to sell as many items as possible. Members can get multiple brochures and have parents take them in for co-workers to check out. After a few weeks, the club combines their orders and places one large order with the company. When the order is received, the group divides the items among the members who then deliver to their buyers. These fundraisers work well, but fundraiserinsight.org warns that they can take responsibility from a child fundraiser and place it on the parents.
A former cake decorator and competitive horticulturist, Amelia Allonsy is most at home in the kitchen or with her hands in the dirt. She received her Bachelor's degree from West Virginia University. Her work has been published in the San Francisco Chronicle and on other websites.