Small nonprofits that aim to spread their programs usually find themselves stuck in a no-money loop. After all, these organizations do not invest their efforts in turning a profit. However, they can’t run on thin air either. Donations are usually the fuel that keeps the charity engine running. Without a doubt, finding creative and unique fundraising ideas for nonprofits is no easy task in a world that’s seen it all.
That’s why it’s crucial not to take donors as a given only based on your status as a nonprofit. Other needy hands are waiting in line. It’s no understatement to say that coming up with a great fundraising idea can be a bit of a balancing act. It needs to rally up a following and engage donors while streamlining the fun elements.
In the end, everyone wants to contribute to bettering the world. Most of the times, only convenience and absentmindedness hinder people’s motivations. You need to instill enough muscle and brain power in your campaign to pull down the wall.
Below are some fundraising ideas for nonprofits that promise to gear some capital for worthy causes. We’ve limited our selection to an elite few.
5 Ambitious Fundraising Ideas for Nonprofits Who Are Striving to Increase their Donations
1. Make it a Race Towards a Good Cause
We’ve already promised a low-cost idea with a high return on investment. An annual fundraising competition, such as a marathon in running, walking, eating, dancing, fits the profile. Granted, everyone does it. But where you up the game is in creativity.
First of all, muscle up your fundraising event with the power of crowdfunding. Flyers and posters certainly work, even if they score more points on nostalgia, not practicality. However, social media is the pillar on which you want to glue your event.
Let’s say you announce a dance-a-thon online. Promote it heavily via Facebook or Twitter. The message will spread like wildfire. Send daily updates on the event location, hours, or the playlist on program. For that, you can enlist the services of those high school kids jamming 24/7 in the garage next door.
On the night of the big dance, the rule is one! Whoever lasts to the last song is the winner. You need the prize incentive in order to attract more donors. After all, it’s just as natural for people to act from the kindness of their hearts as it is to chase a victory.
Participants will pay premium rates to enter the dance. Of course, competitions come in different sizes and shapes. You’re free to experiment with a race in eating, cooking, dressing, fashion, and more.
Another piece of advice: if possible, tie your org’s mission to a strong theme. It will help build awareness more easily while leaving a more lasting echo in people’s minds.
2. ‘Kidnap’ a Celebrity
First glance, it seems like one of the most outlandish fundraising ideas for nonprofits. Don’t be too quick to discard it, though. ‘Kidnapping’ the local TV news anchor or the priest will definitely catapult your campaign to the next level. If your nonprofit is struggling in anonymity, this will certainly put you in the spotlight.
Just make sure everyone – especially your ‘victims’ and the law forces – understands this is all part of your ingenious plan to raise awareness about a good cause.
Once you enlist the approval and support of these celebrities, ask for a ‘ransom’. People will donate money to see their favorite stars safely released. If the idea alone was enough to get a few giggles out of you, then you definitely have to put it into practice.
3. Go Casual Day
Simplicity is the reason we’ve inserted this idea on our list. It demands no initial investments on your side other than a few visits to the local school, bank, or other institutions where employees could do well with a ‘dress down’ code.
Shake some managerial hands if the bosses agree to inspire their employees to donate to your cause in exchange for allowing an informal day at work. Make sure you don’t forget to clearly state your org’s mission.
4. Center an Event Around Children
Make kids part of your target. They can garner both support and attention. All great businesses are aware of the level of influence these little trendsetters carry. It’s the reason babies take up so much space on the publicity panels and in TV commercials.
The idea may carry devious undertones, at first. However, if done right, your campaign may prove one of those rare fundraising ideas for nonprofits with results that extend beyond the immediate. First of all, you will be delivering a valuable moral lesson to children that they might choose to apply later on themselves. Secondly, kids bring natural goodwill and fun wherever they pop up.
So organize your event around them. Make it a potato sack race, a penny war, or an egg hunt if Easter is around the corner. The options are unlimited. And parents will turn out in heaps to stand by their children and support your cause.
5. Chores and Skills On Offer for Donations
Another method to give your mission a lift out of anonymity and into some much-needed funds involves tapping into the individual talents of your supporters. If your families, community members, friends, or business associates can find the time to put their skills to the benefit of your fundraiser, you can export these services to people willing to pay for them.
For example, your neighbor might be unexpectedly gifted at mowing lawns. Ask him if he’s willing to do some landscaping and trim other front yards for your cause. After all, people are ultimately willing to contribute their skill in order to make a difference in the world.
If you don’t know where to start, follow the trail of ProBueno, a website that enables people to offer their personal gifts and talents in exchange for donations. Their model may prove a useful material to your own idea.
In the end, all these simple, yet effective fundraising ideas for nonprofits come down to the passion you’re willing to invest in them. We tend not to give people enough credit, but usually, they are highly receptive to a truthful display of commitment and effort – small or large-scale.