What Are the Best Tips for Holding a Church Fundraiser?

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  • Written By: Kenneth W. Michael Wills
  • Edited By: Kaci Lane Hindman
  • Last Modified Date: 05 November 2018
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Putting together and running a church fundraiser that is successful will usually involve several steps. Each step requires attention to detail from figuring out how to get started to where churches can turn to for help with their fundraising activities. Conducting a fundraiser has one specific purpose for a church: to make a profit for a worthy cause. With that in mind, the fundraising event needs to have a goal as well as a plan to meet this goal. There are several steps to accomplish this: planning, organizing, developing, marketing, operating, measuring finances, and assessing the event's impact on the community and the church.

Planning the church fundraiser is the first step, which can feel overwhelming with the many options available for events a church can hold. For success, however, the key is to hold several events simultaneously that will attract different members of the community. Once settled on the type of events, the church will need to set goals it intends to reach, settle on dates to hold the event, and organize a church meeting to lay out the plan to church members. Conducting this meeting will require a prepared meeting agenda beforehand. During that meeting, the focus should be on recruiting team members to assist in the fundraiser, putting together planning calendars and charts, and establishing regular meetings to gauge progress.


Organizing the event after the meeting is the next required step. Proper organization will usually involve establishing the event’s organizational structure, preparing job descriptions for each participant, establishing communication methods, and putting together a committee that will be responsible for overseeing the event and making decisions. Preparing a budget is crucial to this process as well as determining how to staff and where to recruit volunteers for the event. Other focuses will need to account for any required permits and licenses, mitigating and managing any potential risks, and planning for safety and security at the event.

Development of the event and marketing that event are the next two crucial stages of holding a successful church fundraiser. This will involve planning the exact events to be held during the fundraiser and developing those individual events to include making sure the church can gain access to all resources needed for each individual activity and coordinating their delivery. Without a crowd, however, all meticulous planning will not mean very much, and planning a solid marketing strategy directed at the intended target audience is just as crucial. Depending on the budget for marketing, churches can use radio, television, public fliers, banners or volunteers to sell tickets for the event. Getting the word out early, and effectively, will often determine the success-level of the fundraiser.

Running the event itself will take some pre-planning to include set-up and safety checks before opening to the public. Once the event starts, churches will need to have contingencies for situations that may arise, such as bad weather or unruly customers. At conclusion of the event, the church will need to add up all funds raised and expenditures associated to arrive at a profit. Evaluating the results are just as important, and this includes conducting surveys with people in attendance to measure satisfaction as well as making sure the amount raised met the financial goals set during the planning phase. Holding one final meeting to discuss the results is important as well, so that everyone is aware of the results and steps needed to improve the next church fundraiser.



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