Back to School Fundraising Ideas: Embracing the Virtual

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Back to School Fundraising Ideas: Embracing the Virtual

One of the most popular and effective ways for nonprofits to raise money is through online fundraising. But when it comes to fundraising for schools, it is often tricky. This is because, your donor pool is made up of a combination of parents or guardians, teachers, community leaders, and even alumnus! That’s a lot of different voices to listen to.

Thankfully, GiveCentral has a list of virtual Back to School Fundraising ideas for you to add to your calendar this year. Let’s explore them one by one!


Raffles, like a sweepstake, implies selling tickets as a means to raise money. These tickets are numbered and the winners are drawn at random. The best part about this idea is the fun that it involves for all participants – students and parents. Additionally, raffle tickets are affordable and can be sold online. Whatever the plan may be, there is always room for modification.

  • You can add auctions to the plan. However, this is more focused on the adult audience due to the possibility of pricier items being sold. Have a deadline for bids, the highest bidder takes it away. 
  • Results for raffles can be announced in an online Live session.
  • Promote giving methods such as mobile giving for easier transactions.

Cookies and Cookie Dough

Cookies are loved by many! Back to school fundraising ideas must include the best interest of students. So why not consider activities that would be exciting for the students as well? Sell cookies at an online storefront. The students can then pass the news on to their friends and families. In case you don’t like the idea of selling cookies, you can substitute the item with:

  • coffee 
  • chocolate
  • candies and cake and other similar, less expensive products

Online Competitions

Decide on a theme and host an online competition. This can be painting, essay or even pictures of handmade goods. Now fix an entry fees your viewers need to pay to view submissions by all participants. After that, encourage your students and supporters to spread the word about the online contest.

Home Challenges

Raise funds by asking participants to get sponsorship for their activities. Set up a challenge that students complete in the comfort of their own homes. For example, walking around the house and taking steps that would be equal to climbing the school stairs per week. Similarly, a challenge of running 10 kms per week is a great idea too! This also relays that the school cares about the physical well being of its students. 

Peer-to-peer Fundraising

No list of back to school fundraising ideas is complete without peer-to-peer fundraising. In other words, schools reach out to communities and supporters to set up fundraising pages on their behalf. After that, online donations then are solicited for your school. There are multiple benefits that come with the campaign. 

  • Your school can reach a wider audience when the campaign is shared on social media among friends and family. 
  • It is a simple process, easy to monitor as well.
  • The ability to individualize the cause is a major component of the campaign.


As you raise funds for your school, do not forget to talk about it in your communication materials. Be it newsletters, social media and your website, create stories and posts around it. Be open to accepting feedback on your fundraising campaign and grow from the same. 


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