While school fundraising is a topic that elicits many conflicting responses among parents, PTO members and principals, all are in agreement when it comes to the value of fundraising. With the majority of US schools participating in 1-5 fundraisers annually it seems that the results are worth the effort. With the increased need for money to cover expenses for classroom equipment, supplies, field trips and playground equipment, many schools are fundraising year round. With parents inundated with so many fundraising requests, volunteer burnout occurs and participation rates decline. With so much hitting the email inbox, cluttering up social media and demanding our attention the noise can defeat the purpose. With all this fundraising noise, how can you be sure that you gain your parents attention and are heard?
3 Ways to reduce your school’s fundraising noise
- Be choosy. Principals should work with their PTO/PTA parent groups and faculty to choose only the fundraisers that have the potential to make the most money with the least time commitment from volunteers. Ask people what they want, what they’d be willing to pay for (and how much) and let that influence your choice.
- Limit the number of fundraisers. Less is often more when it comes to fundraising. There is a limit to how much your supporters can give. There is a limit to your volunteer’s time. There’s a limit to your seller’s market. By focusing your effort on just a few carefully chosen fundraisers a year, you can put forth the best effort as your volunteers will not experience burnout or fatigue.
- Try something new. Don’t be afraid to try something new. Get informed about the competition. Choose a unique fundraiser that will be valued by your supporters. People buy things they have a personal connection with. Rise above the competition by doing something different.
By choosing an efficient and profitable fundraising program, setting very specific goals, limiting the amount of fundraisers run annually, and trying something new schools will find that they can reduce fundraising noise and achieve success. And that’s worth talking about 🙂