PTA fundraising ideas to boost your takings

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How much does your PTA raise each year? Get new PTA fundraising ideas to move your fundraising up to the next level.

We’ve crowd-sourced real PTA fundraising initiatives from our Ambassador network to bring you the latest in how PTAs are raising money. Discover ways to boost your takings, and ideas to keep things fresh and improve engagement from your school community.


Inventive fundraising event ideas

Four cake sales, three school discos, a summer fair, a quiz night and the Christmas fair; this is how a solid parent teacher organisation calendar looks. With other popular regulars such as bingo, pamper nights, Easter egg hunts and non- school uniform days often getting a look in – all great fundraising favourites.

Mix things up a bit to get some renewed interest in your profitable parent association calendar. Find something new in these recent events we’ve spotted.

  • Silent auctions. Ask parents or businesses to donate prizes. We’ve seen an expensive bottles of champagne auctioned off and stays in holiday cottages offered. Or, auction off parent services for example: building a website, cooking a meal, a night’s babysitting. Let the parents share their time and talents.
  • Sponsored events. Sponsored bounces – hire a bouncy castle and parents sponsor the number of bounces the children can do in a minute. Or, a sponsored cross country run – children train on the field for the event during school hours. Parents sponsor the children on the day of a school-wide cross country run.
  • Parent advice evenings are trending on Classlist. Invite a speaker to the school to talk on internet safety, how to parent your tweenager. Ticket the event and sell wine on the night to boost profits.
  • Invest in a popcorn machine. You’ll pay it off after a couple of events and from then on you will be in profit. Can be used at movie nights and other events. We’ve even spotted a school attending other community fairs to raise money.
  • Organise a family fun run. Charge an entrance ticket, give the children a small prize at the end, have refreshments and a raffle back at base. We are seeing a trend in sport related PTA family events.
  • Hold a big PTA sale. Source items for different stalls – ideas include a deli, a homegrown produce stall and second hand branded clothing. Or, set up a PTA shop on the listings with second hand school uniform.
  • Invite an artist to run an art project in your school. Sell off the children’s art work at a evening gallery event – complete with wine and nibbles. Use the proceeds to cover the costs of the art project and raise funds. You can charge a set amount per family so it doesn’t become too expensive for the parents with multiple children at your school.
  • Cash in on the season of goodwill and ask for donations at the Christmas nativity – one school raised £650 over four nights. You can play each audience/year group off on the other!
  • Father and Mother’s day present stalls. Source some nice but cheap presents (is anyone on the PTA going to IKEA?) that the children can buy for their parents.
  • We are seeing charity cake sales where schools are splitting the proceeds 50/50 and using it as a hook to boost involvement in this PTA fundraising staple. Red Nose DayThe Poppy AppealMacmillan Cancer SupportChildren in Need are all PTA favourites.
  • Sleepover night at the school. The children pay to stay overnight, have hot dogs for supper and watch a movie. Teachers keep a watchful eye. The parents can have a night out!
  • Ice lolly sales on hot Friday’s in summer. Ice pops are great for this as you can buy a bulk lot and store them unfrozen until you need them!

Top Tip: For more effective fundraising, ticket your events on Classlist – and you can track your fundraising total on the dashboard.

Make the most of your fundraising events

Successful PTAs make the most out of every event they plan. Holding a curry night? Add in a quiz and a raffle so you make money on the food AND the quiz and raffle! Running a quiz night? Organise some simple fundraising games in the breaks (download our quiz pack for more ideas).

Framed photos

We all have so many photos on our phones, and yet a framed photo is a lovely thing. Find your photographer Mum or Dad. Ask them to take individual graduation photos or photos of the children in their costumes for the school play, frame them and sell to parents.

School fundraising schemes

We are increasingly seeing PTAs using school fundraising schemes. A good way to boost your profits. Here are some of the ones we’ve seen PTAs using:

  • Sponsored reading to get free books for your school with Usborne books. 
  • Raise money as parents spend (particularly good around Christmas!) with Easyfundraising. When parents buy online with specified retailers a small donation is given to the PTA.
  • Recycle clothes and earn money for your school with Bag2School.
Give crowdfunding a go

Some PTAs are trying out crowdfunding to reach a big target. Just Giving, for example, offer their crowdfunding platform free to PTAs (providing your PTA is set up with the right status).

Match funding

Savvy PTAs are calling for parents with match funding schemes at work.

Parents who work at banks and other similar organisations can often get match funding for your PTA events. They can normally access the funding for events they help with – up to an upper limit. It’s best to use this on your highest earning events to make the most of the offer. Just this one tip can make a massive difference to your summer fair takings!


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