- Adult Spelling Bee
Kids spelling bees are endearing, but adult spelling bees are funny and profitable. Have congregation members form small teams (doing this with just individuals will work as well) where each team tries to spell the words. Divide the teams up in groups for preliminary rounds and then have the winners advance on to the next round until you’re down the championship round and a winning team emerges, so it’s a tournament-style spelling bee. Make sure you have a prize to give the winning team. Charge a fee for each team to participate and/or have the teams get sponsorships for the amount of words they correctly spell.
- Bake Sale
This is a staple for churches and schools, but it remains so because it always gets people involved and brings in the money. Have church members bake delicious goods, i.e. cakes, cookies, muffins, pies, etc., and then sell them at an event. To make your bake sale a little different, ask the baker to attach their recipe (if they’re willing!) to their baked goods so buyers get the tasty sweet treat and the recipe so they can make it on their own. church fundraisers ideas
- Bingo Night
Bingo is a game people of all ages can play, and it’s a very sociable game. Just have cards, the pieces to cover the numbers, the tiles or balls with the numbers in a sack or machine and the bingo caller. Here’s how the game works: the caller picks out the tiles and announces the numbers, the players cover or cross off the numbers as they’re read and then whoever has a fully covered or crossed off board shouts bingo and they win. Choose to play as little as 2-3 games or play up to 5 or 6 in one night. You make money by charging a flat entrance fee or charging people per game.
- Book Sale
Books sales are great. You can ask church members, as well as those in the community if you want to get more people involved, to bring in new or gently used books. You can do the whole event in one night or give people an allotted amount of time to bring in books and then on a certain date you hold the book sale. Have the books clearly displayed and organized by children’s books, adult books and genre, so everyone can easily scan and find the books they want to buy.
- Car Wash
You won’t be the first church to ever hold a car wash fundraising event, but a car wash is a tried-and-true method. It’s fun for those who participate, as well as a great team building and bonding activity, and it’s a great way to serve your community. Hold it in your church parking lot or ask another community business that’s in a high trafficked area to let you hold your car wash in their parking lot during the summer. Saturdays are a great day to hold a car wash.
Carnivals are fun — and not just for younger children. It’s a great family activity filled with fun games, cool prizes and tasty treats. Make money by doing a raffle, having a dunk contest where people pay to try and dunk whoever is in the tank and getting people to pay a small fee to have their faces painted or have someone draw a caricature of them. You can also save yourself money putting a carnival together by having local grocery stores and restaurants donate food and drinks. Some local event companies may donate time and rental equipment or do so at discounted prices if it is a fundraiser.
- Christmas Cards
Everyone enjoys giving and getting Christmas cards. So what better way to give your congregation what they want than by selling them unique Christmas cards to give their friends and family this year? You can choose to make homemade cards to sell, go online and design cards to be printed and sold or work with a card company that allows you to add your church’s logo or special message on their Christmas cards.
- Collect Loose Change
Check your pockets or your dresser right now. It’s a good possibility that you have loose change in both places. Instead of weighing you down or cluttering your dresser, put your loose change to a good cause. You can have jars labeled and placed around your church where people can drop in their loose change. You could even make it a competition between members of your congregation, dividing your members into groups and the group that collects the largest amount of change at the end of the time period wins a prize.
This will be a big hit with the women in your church — and the men will be pretty happy about it too. Ask each family to offer their best and favorite family recipes to put in a church cookbook. Put a few members in charge to collect recipes, compile the cookbooks together and sell them to church and community members. You could also ask around to local businesses to see if any of them want to advertise in your cookbook and charge them a fee for an advertising spot. Print off plenty because you can continue selling them at other church events, like a bake sale or book sale.
A benefit concert is a great, uplifting fundraiser, and you can do it any time during the year. When you do it and where to hold it depends on the funds you have for this fundraiser. If your church is big, save money and hold it in your church, or you can rent out a local building that has a concert hall. Another option is having an outdoor summer concert. Get a local band (or bands) to play for free and/or have your church’s choir put on a concert. Sell tickets before the concert and the day of the show. Raise more funds (and cut costs) by having a concession stand and having local food shops donate food and drinks.
- Eating Contest
It’s not everyday that you get to see members of your congregation stuff their faces. This would be great for families young and old. Choose a food that doesn’t break the bank and is popular among the people, like hotdogs or pie, and get enough to have some leftovers. Make contestants pay an entry fee to participate, and then give the winner a small percentage of the earnings as their prize. It’s sure to be a fun time, and make for great photos to display in your church’s newsletter, bulletin board and social media.
- Fashion Show
Turn a traditional fashion show on its head by having participants bring old, random clothes to dress in and then strut down the runway. Play music and offer refreshments to add to the festivities.The light-hearted atmosphere will invite all ages to participate. By charging an entry fee and donating the old clothes to charity organizations, you will be able to build relationships within the community.
- A Food Fast
Have members of your congregation volunteer to give up a meal or two on a certain day, or even once or twice during a certain week, and then have them donate the money they would have spent on their meal(s) to the church. After a member has finished their fast, they invite another member to begin one, keeping the cycle going. Those who are unable to fast can sponsor a member that is able to, donating money in place of the fast participant. This is a simple and effective way to include everyone in a fundraiser.
- Giving Up For Good
This fundraiser is similar to the the food fast. Ask members who are willing to give up a hobby or a habit of theirs they regularly do that costs money for a whole month. Those members who volunteer save up the money they would have spent and then donate it to the church. Not only will members save money to donate, they can cut a bad habit that will continue to benefit them after the month is over.
- Golf Tournament
A golf tournament is a perfect summer fundraising event, especially if you have a local course that’s willing to let you use their course. To help attract more participants and money, get any local celebrities, athletes or government leaders to also participate in the golf tournament. Make participants pay or get sponsored to play. This event can bring the community together for a positive cause and help you build good relations with local businesses. Plan an indoor backup plan in case the weather doesn’t cooperate.