Fundraising Ideas: Humane Alternatives to Bake Sales

 
kids pick up trash in park

So many organizations out there are in need of funds to continue their important work. That’s why a popular activity at schools has always been to host a bake sale to raise money for a cause.

You know the drill. Parents and kids bake something sweet, bring it into school and then sell it to their classmates. But during a time when childhood obesity, type 2 diabetes, and food allergy scares are hitting all time highs, bake sales seem more like a part of the problem than a part of the solution.

Of course we don’t want that to stop us from raising funds to help create a more humane world. Instead, here are a few great alternatives to bake sales that will help you raise some cash, and even do some good in the process.

Sell Seeds
During the spring semester when students are excited to get outside, it’s the perfect time to sell seeds. If you’re doing a lesson on local foods, perhaps choose vegetable seeds so students can combine the fundraising initiative with an educational campaign on the importance of buying local. Of course, flower seeds are always a big hit as well. Students can sell them to parents, friends and neighbors.

Tip: If you live in an urban environment, be sure to choose seeds like basil that can grow easily on a windowsill.

Tip: Ask your local nursery if it would be willing to donate seeds for the fundraising drive so all funds can go to the cause.

Flower Balls
Making flower balls is an exciting activity that tends to be a big hit with kids from elementary school through high school. All students have to do is mix seeds with clay and a little bit of soil, mold them into a ball and let them dry over night. Once they are ready, they can sell them for a buck or two each. The students who buy them can decide where they want to place them so that flowers can grow. It’s great for the environment since it means more seeds will be planted.

Tip: Here are some resources on how to make flower balls.

Host a Walk
Most fundraising walks require a lot of time, money and paperwork. But because schools already own property, they can bypass all of that and organize the walk at their convenience. Whether it’s around the soccer field, on the playground, or right on the track, you’ll be able to gather large numbers of students without the hassle. The walk would work like any other. Students ask friends, family and neighbors to sponsor them as they walk for a cause. It’s a great way to raise funds and promote exercise at the same time.

Organize a Community Clean Up Day
Whether it’s at the local park, the waterfront, or right on school grounds, organizing a cleanup day helps the environment while you raise funds for a cause. This works in a similar way to the charity walk. Students ask their friends, family and neighbors to sponsor them in their efforts. They work with other students and adults to pick up trash in the community, all the while, earning cash for good. This activity is great, because the students are raising funds while taking part in an environmental activity. It also promotes community awareness on the importance of keeping their community clean for the good of people, animals and the planet.

Tip: Make sure to separate the trash from the recyclable items for an extra lesson on how to properly recycle.

Tip: Adults should supervise the cleanup closely and students should be told not to touch anything sharp.

Tip: Buy reusable gloves and give a pair to each student. With reusable gloves, you can wash them and use them again during future cleanups.

Photo Credit: Flickr / Kulturlabor Trial&Error