Hopefully everyone is enjoying spending time with family and reflecting on what we are “thankful” for this week. With that in mind…wouldn’t Thanksgiving be a wonderful time for people to give back to a worthy cause? You’ve probably seen the pre-packaged grocery bags that can be purchased for families who may not be able to afford a Thanksgiving meal. But, perhaps people are willing to do more? Since Thanksgiving is a time for giving thanks for all our good fortunes, perhaps it’s also a good time to ask people to “give” to those less fortunate through hosting a fundraiser. Below are some fundraising ideas that might be a perfect fit for your school, charity or nonprofit organization!
How about hosting a walk-a-thon to raise money for your cause? Plan your walk-a-thon for the Friday after Thanksgiving. Most people do not work, and many friends and families have all gathered together for the holiday. Not only is this a great way for people to “walk-off” the extra calories they consumed at Thanksgiving dinner, but it’s a great way to bond with family and other members of the community in support of a great cause. Encourage members of your organization to sign up to participate in the walk-a-thon. Each participant then creates a personal fundraising website where they tell their story and accept online donations. You may want to create “teams” and provide incentives for the teams and/or individuals that raise the most funds. Consider reaching out to local businesses (perhaps a local grocery store) to come on board as a sponsor of the event. Perhaps they’d be willing to offer coupons to donors to help pay for their Thanksgiving feast. Or maybe a local gym would like to come on board to offer free gym memberships to help people get back-in-shape following the holiday season of indulgence.
Holiday Sale & Silent Auction
Thanksgiving is often thought of as the “kick-off” to the holiday shopping season. The Friday following “turkey-day” is the busiest shopping day of the year. Thanksgiving weekend is also when many families decide to put up their lights and Christmas trees. Perhaps you can organize a Community Fundraiser Sale where you offer: Christmas trees, Christmas lights, wreaths, candles, wrapping paper, and more. Work with a local tree farm to purchase Christmas trees at a discount in support of your charity. Purchase other holiday décor in bulk at discounted prices, or perhaps request donated items from companies for you to sell in support of your cause.
You may also want to reach out to local businesses to see if they’d be willing to donate prizes for a fundraising raffle or silent auction. What a great way to kick off the holiday shopping season! People can bid on “one-of-a-kind” auction items (such as autographed sports memorabelia or an exclusive spa escape) to give as a present for that special someone. Alternately, you may be interested in adding a raffle as part of your fundraiser. People can purchase raffle tickets in hope to win gift certificates from restaurants, retail shops as well as other great prizes.
Thanksgiving Bake Sale
A great idea or a church congregation or school fundraiser could be a Thanksgiving bake sale. Everyone wants pie following their turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes. Why not offer various pies for sale prior to the big feast? Promote the fundraiser at least a month in advance. People can pre-order pies and plan to pick up the day before Thanksgiving. A percentage of each pie can be donated to your cause. Perhaps you’d like to set up a fundraising website where you list the different pie varieties. Charge a minimum fee for pie purchase (i.e. $10) – but leave the donation amount open. Someone might be willing to pay a little extra or a yummy pie…if their donation is going towards a great cause.
Visit our fundraising resources for more creative fundraising ideas! Happy Thanksgiving to All.