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50 FUNdraising Ideas!

We brainstormed so you don't have to!

Use these ideas for different ways to fundraise for Sleep Out.

Best Practices

1. Make a self-donation to your own page first. Then, ask others to match your donation. 

2. Download our mobile app to get your custom QR code. Take a screenshot or print a copy so you can share it easily. 

3. Copy and paste your URL into your text group chats with friends and family.

4. Utilize your own company (and your donors' companies') matching gift programs.

5. Become a pen pal! Send personal letters sharing why you are fundraising for Covenant House. 

Things You Can Do on Your Own

6. Host a "mission moment." Volunteer at your local shelter or host an in-kind donation drive for food or clothing, and include the link to your fundraising page. Ask a local business or contact to sponsor it (e.g. for every can of food donated, the business will donate $5). 

7. Recycle bottles and cans and donate the money back to your fundraiser.

8. Have a habit you're trying to break? Keep a spare change jar on your desk and drop coins in each time you slip up. Donate your change back to your fundraiser. 

9. Set up a donation jar (or a flyer with your QR code!) at a local business.

10. Partner with a local restaurant for a night where a percentage of each check goes to your fundraiser.

11. Ask a local business to sponsor you by matching all the donations you receive. 

12. Host a 50/50 raffle: the winner keeps half the funds raised, and the other half goes to your fundraiser. 

13. Host a garage sale in-person or online and donate the profits back to your fundraiser.

14. Babysit, pet sit, or house sit for donations.

15. Ask for donations in lieu of presents for a special occasion, like a birthday or anniversary. 

16. Utilize photos of your pets, children, or anything cute that will help get people to donate! Putting "Pet Parade" or "Childs first day of school" in the subject line of your email helps. 

17. Make a small change to one of your daily or weekly spending habits for one month (e.g. make your own coffee instead of buying it, skipping the pack of gum at the grocery store counter, pausing a subscription service) and donate the savings to your page. 

18. Sell candy grams. Buy or make candy bags (leave space for a personal note!) and offer to deliver them from one person to another with a special message. Your suggested donation amount should cover the cost of the candy, so you can refund your expenses and donate the "profit." 

19. Host a bake sale. Bake sweet treats, sell them around the neighborhood, and donate back your profits.

20. Offer to do chores or small jobs in exchange for donations.

21. Have a car wash with all proceeds benefiting your fundraiser. 

22. Dig through your shelves to find books you don't need and create a "free library" for your neighbors. Post the link or QR code to your fundraiser on the front. 

Group Activities

23. Instead of a book club, host a charity night with friends. Each person can bring an organization they support to discuss or select one issue that you want to learn more about. 

24. Host a paint night. People will make a donation to participate and then paint something that makes you think of "home" or "love." This can be a traditional paint night, that is led by an instructor where everyone paints the same thing or it can be open to interpretation and everyone paints something using the same prompt.

25. Teach a class on something you enjoy in exchange for donations.

26. Host a comedy show.

27. Ask a gym to host a workout class for your fundraiser.

28. Host a "thon" event (spin-a-thon, dance-a-thon, walk-a-thon) and ask for pledges based on the hours you dance, steps you walk, etc. 

29. Host a happy hour where guests donate a "cover charge" to your fundraiser. 

30. Host a pickleball tournament. Charge a donation to your fundraiser for entry into a single-elimination tournament. 

31. Host a flower arrangement class. People will donate to participate, and they can either keep their arrangement, or donate to local shelters to brighten those spaces and add joy for those who use them!

32. Host a 5K. Have people donate an entrance fee and set up your QR code at water stations and race signage to get extra donations from people passing by.

33. Host a bowling night. Everyone will pitch in a set donation amount to play. You can couple this one with auctions or raffles for some extra funds raised!

34. Host a talent show. People can pay a small donation to enter and then everyone can donate to their favorite talent, the one with the most donations wins!

35. Host a music benefit. Have local performers donate their talents and arrange a concert, then "sell" tickets and donate the proceeds.

36. Host a videogame competition. You can charge an entrance fee to play and do a "March Madness" style tournament. Bonus points if you play on Twitch or another streaming service and collect donations from people streaming.

37. Host a wine or beer tasting. Ask guests to make a donation in order to attend, and get extra donations by voting on your favorite ones.

38. Host a fantasy sports league where part of the entry fee is donated to your fundraiser. 

39. Put together football squares for an upcoming game and donate part of the buy-in to your fundraiser. 

40. Host a live, online, or silent auction.

41. Host a cooking competition with an entry fee to participate or taste-test. 

42. Host a dress down day at work or school (e.g. anyone who makes a donation can dress down). 

43. Host a BBQ or dinner party and ask for guests to contribute to your fundraiser. 

44. Host a costume competition. Your friends and family can dress up either in person or take pictures of their outfits, and then people can use donations as votes. Every dollar counts as a vote, the costume(s) with the most donations, wins!

45. Host a game night! The entrance fee is a donation to your fundraiser. 

46. Host a trivia competition. Include a few questions about youth homelessness and donate the entry fees to your fundraiser.

47. Host a Karaoke contest! Select songs that mention "home", "love", or "respect". Charge a small donation for each song or collect tips for the best singers. 

48. Host a photo contest. Consider the prompt "what does home mean to you?". Showcase the winner on social media and donate entrance fees to your fundraiser. 

49. Host an ax throwing competition. Charge a small donation to play, and then host a single elimination tournament.

50. Host a pool (billiards) competition. Charge a small donation and then play a single elimination tournament. 

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