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How to Avoid Elementary School Fundraising Burnout

By Clay Boggess on May 16, 2013
How to Avoid Elementary School Fundraising Burnout

How to keep elementary school fundraising simple

Elementary school fundraising is hard work to begin with, and to make matters worse, nobody really wants to do them. It seems like every year the same few reluctant, yet sacrificial people end up volunteering because no one else will help. After all, someone has to do it, right?

If the same people take the reins every year, don’t they ever get tired? Of course, but they do it anyway because their central focus is on the students and their best interest.

With that said there are specific things that you can do to make the fundraiser process a whole lot simpler, which can even make running the sale somewhat fun and rewarding. Here are some things that you can do to help prevent burnout.

Plan for Fewer Elementary School Fundraisers

We recommend doing one, or at most two larger sales as opposed to having several smaller ones. Saturating your community with lots of campaigns not only frustrates your supporters, but your parents will grow weary of the persistent selling as well. Therefore, put as much effort into making one sale as productive as possible by:

  • Making a commitment to your community to do 1 or 2 big fundraisers over the course of the school year.
  • Sticking to it, no matter what.
  • Putting the burden on your sellers to produce because if they don’t, they’ll just do without.
  • Heavily promoting your sale
  • Fundraising is like a race. You plan, which is the training. Then once the race begins, you go all out. Once it’s over, you rest and look back with no regrets.

Have an Elementary School Fundraising Plan

Planning your campaign takes work, but it’s important that it runs efficiently. This is why we provide our elementary schools with a school fundraising guidebook. The guidebook helps with planning and implementation. Make sure you also:

  • Develop a successful marketing strategy.
  • What role each of your team members will play.
  • Determine the best possible additional incentives ideas above and beyond the basic prize program
  • Use the following letters:
    • Reminder to sell notice
    • Reminder to turn in order forms and money envelopes
    • Delivery notice

Stay Consistent as a Sponsor

Once you’ve developed your plan, believe in it and stay with it, no matter what. Try not to make exceptions for some people. Then you’ll have to remember what you did for them but didn’t do for others. If you’re consistent with everyone you won’t have to keep remembering what you said or did.

New Elementary School Fundraisers Are Refreshing

If everyone is tired of the same type of sale every year perhaps it’s time to change things up a little. If you’ve been selling out of a large variety brochure, perhaps you'll want to instead focus on selling just one type of product, like a candy bar fundraiser or a popcorn fundraiser for example. Or, you can do something completely different, like a carnival or auction.

Avoiding burnout can be as simple as committing to make one campaign really count. And the best part? Successful sponsors who always seem to find elementary school fundraising ideas that work are usually done after one sale.

For planning ideas for your next campaign, download our free fundraising tips eBook from our school fundraising tips page.

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